Who knows how big mental health will be in 10 years time if we do not focus more on today’s youth. Areas that help children become mentally healthy adults include:
- High self esteem and confidence
- A balance perspective on life
- Being active – especially outdoors
- Learn to understand managing money early in life
- Healthy nutrition
- Lots of family time and plenty of communication
- Schools having strong policies on bullying. This includes a care towards bullies too as a child that bullies could be hiding problems.
- Minimised screen time
- Controlled social media
- A good balance between school work, family life and play
- Be able to focus on their passions
Issues such as anxiety, OCD, depression and self harm are common amongst teenagers and for many starts at younger ages. It is sad to see children suffering as it should be a time of no worries and lots of play and joy.
The above list doesn’t appear too difficult on the face of it but the issues can start to creep in at a young age, sometimes starting with a problematic child at school or another incident. Children take our lead so we need to show them the way by creating balance in our own lives too. This can be challenging, especially for single parents or when both parents are working full time.
Probably the greatest lesson my parents taught me, albeit without realising at the time, was to be sensible with money. My siblings are the same. If you have young children now is a great time to pass on your wisdom.
We form most of our beliefs by the time we are just 6 years old. Those early years are invaluable. By this time we may have already formed beliefs such as:
- ‘I’m not good enough’
- ‘I’m not clever’
- ‘I’m insignificant’
By showing interest in what your children are doing, praising them for their efforts, telling them they look lovely, letting them know it’s ok to make mistakes, they will have a much more positive belief system and take that into adulthood. This is so invaluable.
Some children will not be academic geniuses but the world needs other skills and talents too. We need musicians, inventors, creatives, plasterers, electricians and so on. Encourage them to pursue their passions.
Get outdoors and be active. Children are used to outdoor activity at a young age will be more likely to be healthier adults.
Encourage communication – by seeing you talking with your partner, family or friends – face to face of course, they are more likely to recognise the value of talking and find it easier to talk to you. Put aside some time each week to have a very relaxed chat about how school is going and anything else that is relevant – if you start this when they are very young, it becomes normal and part of family life. Use meal times as a time for talk.
Childhood mental health is huge topic but I hope this has given you some ideas for simple things you can do to guide your child.
ANN BOWDITCH is a member and trainer registered on the General Hypnotherapy Register and General Hypnotherapy Standards Council and has run her own private practice in Guernsey for 7 years. She is also a practitioner of a number of therapies including EFT, Energy in Motion, META Health, NES Health, Matrix Reimprinting, Colour Mirrors. Ann is also a RMTi Consultant – the only one in the Channel islands helping children with issues such as ADHD, dyslexia, behavioural issues, postural issues, anxiety and many other issues. If you wish to find out how Ann can help you please contact her here.
If you wish to find out how Ann can help you please contact her here.
Ann Bowditch GQHP, GHR Reg., META-P
Dip (Hyp) Hypnotherapy
EFT (AAMET Certified) & Matrix Reimprinting Practitioner
Meta-Health & Colour Mirrors Practitioner
RMTi Consultant, NES Health Practitioner
PSTEC Level 1-A (Advanced PSTEC)
Tel: 07781 111186
Ann Bowditch is a Member & Trainer registered on the General Hypnotherapy Register