We’re all on edge because of the current situation that is happening around us. Our daily lives have been disrupted, and for many of us the nonstop news and social media coverage isn’t helping.
If you or your children are feeling worried, learning how to deal with that anxiety in a healthy way can help the whole family be more resilient, both now and when it is finally over.
Here are some ways on how we can cope up through crisis:
As parents, we need to be modeling for our kids how to react to stressful times by coping with anxiety in healthy ways. We have to be mindful of the present and stay focused on what is actually happening and not let ourselves go to worst case scenarios. If we’re showing our kids catastrophic thinking and head-in-your-hands worry, and crying and fear, then they’re going to learn that’s the way to handle the times now.
Helping anxious kids
Structure their day. Make sure that you are structuring their days when they are cooped up at home. Alternate chores or schoolwork with more fun activities and periods of free time.
Calm yourself. Don’t share your worries with your children, and if you are feeling anxious, find a way to ground yourself. After this crisis is over, your kids are going to walk away from this having learned things. “What will they have learned from you in the way you handled this? Will they look back and say ‘Wow, I’m really impressed with how mom and dad held it together?’ Or are they going to walk away and think the world is a scary place?”
Look for the positive. Have you noticed it, our kids are all together and they’re playing games together and they’re laughing together and we’re spending time together. So there are silver linings after all, you just have to look for them.
Lean In To God
Paul instructed us on how to overcome anxiety in his letter to the Philippians: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Philippians 4:6-8).
Spend time daily in the Bible. If you are feeling anxious or fearful, read through the many verses that speak about anxiety and fear. Reading and studying His Word is a great way to focus your thoughts and will provide peace.
Spend time talking to God also. When we want to talk to someone about our worries and feelings, who better to share them with than the One who knows us best? There is nothing more freeing than getting on your knees before Him and surrendering all of your thoughts and worries to Him. He is truly in control of this and every other situation that we could ever face.
In troubled times, such as what we are facing with this crisis, it is all too easy to worry. Uncertainties about the future can quickly spiral into anxiety and fear. The Bible tells us to “cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).
How wonderful is it to know that God cares for us and the circumstances that we face? Even when we feel like things are spiraling out of control, God is absolutely in control. He knew before we were ever born that we would face worries. That’s why the Bible tells us, perhaps more than any other phrase, “Do not be afraid.”It is important that during times of crisis such as we are currently experiencing that we learn to overcome that anxiety and put our trust in God.
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