Written by Feba Maryann
With the constant changes that have been made in your child’s life in recent times, getting back into in-person schooling and the routine that comes with it can be tricky. Going back to school after staying cooped up at home, without meeting their friends for almost two years, require more work with children than before. In order to combat social anxiety, fear of falling ill, or separation anxiety, one method that is simple to implement and magnificent in its impact is positive self-affirmation.
What Are Positive Affirmations?
Positive affirmations are statements or phrases that motivate, encourage, or boost one’s self-esteem. These statements often start with ‘I can’, ‘I am’, or ‘I choose’ and its repetition turns a negative viewpoint or mindset into a positive. Affirmations can be described as a way to train your child’s brain into picking negative or self-defeating thoughts and turning them into positive opportunities.
Being one of the simplest ways to help your child learn to control their emotions in an unpredictable or stressful situation, positive affirmations nurture wellbeing at an early age. The exercise promotes self-regulation in children and they do not have to depend on anyone else for managing their emotions.
How Do Positive Affirmations Work?
When your child adds positive affirmation to their daily routine, their belief system changes for the better and stays strong despite challenges. Numerous studies and theories such as the Self-affirmation theory suggest that with positive thoughts and affirmation, one can improve self-esteem and maintain integrity. Developing a habit of positive self-affirmation can improve your child’s mood and give them a chance to experience more positive feelings on average.
If your child is afraid that their friends or teachers are not going to be the same when they go back to school, teach the child to affirm themselves by saying ‘I am going to meet my old friends as well as make new ones today’ to ease their anxiety. Another way in which positive affirmations can help children is by enabling them to deal with negative comments that come their way. If a child affirms that they are smart and loved, peers name-calling them is not going to have a disastrous impact because the child’s belief system is strong.
Creating Positive Affirmations with Your Child
Positive affirmations are powerful tools and by utilizing them properly, you can help your child develop into a confident and secure individual. While nurturing the habit of affirmations in your child, make sure that age-appropriate statements are used. If the affirmation is out of the child’s scope of understanding, the entire exercise becomes a futile effort.
One way to ease into developing the habit of positive affirmations is by assuring your child on your own. Before leaving for school, for instance, be sure to tell your child that they are capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. Starting or ending the morning routine with a long and tight hug can bring a flush of oxytocin and other happy hormones which can make your child feel better about attending school.
A simple method to help your child choose an affirmation is by having an affirmation board or a jar with an affirmation for the day. You can come up with a set of affirmations with your child and make a craft project out of putting it all together. This way, you can have some bonding time with your child before school starts and also help your child in choosing positive affirmations.
Another creative way of including positive affirmations in your child’s routine is singing the affirmation statements to each other. Putting all the affirmations along with a simple tune can make remembering them easier and repeating them does not seem boring to the child after a while. You can also leave small notes with affirmations for your child to find during their school day. This can brighten up their day and keep them less distracted during classes.
Going to school has always invoked feelings of reluctance and even dread in children. This aversion to attending school may be brought on by many factors. Some children feel inadequate in a learning environment while others feel socially isolated and some may even get anxious because of the coursework.
In order to help your child overcome whatever is holding them back from enjoying school, positive affirmations can be of great help. From pre-schoolers to teens, affirming that they can deal effectively with the demands of school life can bring many positive changes to your child’s life. Starting the day with a simple positive statement can be very powerful in boosting your child’s spirits.