As we near the end of summer and the start of the new school year, you may feel a sense of stress and anxiety about the year to come. This is natural! You may be gearing up for your children to head back to school, or be anticipating a busy season at work. You may even be excited about no longer having to fill their days with activities! Instead of dreading these changes, try to embrace them. Change lays the foundation to build new habits and routines for a healthier life.
In a recent post in the New York Times “Well section,” writer Tara Parker-Pope created a guide for “How to Be Better at Stress.” Many of the concepts presented are in keeping with a Cognitive Behavioral approach to stress management. A few suggestions we found to be particularly interesting are:
Overall, encourage yourselves and your family to enjoy the start of the new school season and embrace the changes to come! Actively teaching your children stress management skills and shifting the way you manage and cope with stress can help build healthier habits for your entire family and prepare for future stressful transitions.
For more discussion and help on managing stress, watch Kelly McGonigal’s TED talk, “How to Make Stress Your Friend.”
There is no arguing that happiness is something we all strive to achieve. Benefits of being happy include healthier living, living longer, and a better sense of well-being. At Therapy West, we aim to improve the lives of your child and your family. We want to provide the tools for your child to be their best self.
Scientists have set out to find what drives happiness and how to improve happiness in children. Although happiness levels vary by individual and is partially genetically driven, studies have found that we do have some control over our happiness.
Therapy West staff members strive to give your child the means to build happiness within themselves. This aim extends not only to your child, but to your entire family as well. We believe that your family's happiness is an integral part of your child's well-being.
Check out some tips below for developing a happier and sunnier outlook on life.
Being a parent in New York City is challenging, fast, chaotic, and downright exhausting. After organizing your child's schedule, cooking meals for your family, and trying to get work done without combusting, it can be hard to remember to breathe. Of course, without breathing it would be impossible to survive; yet sometimes it feels as though we are going about our days breathless.
With the rising enthusiasm of wellness in the media and the abundance of trends regarding health, it can be difficult to weed out what methods are vital to incorporate into daily living. A heavily researched method known as deep breathing, or controlled breathing, is a form of breathing that essentially helps the mind remain in a state of calm or tranquility. Breathing has also been linked to improving mood, increasing energy, and boosting your immune system. Recently, the New York Times ran an article about breathing-related research being conducted on mice. By isolating a particular breathing neuron in the mice’s brain, the researchers discovered a correlation between the mice’s breathing and stress. When the breathing neuron was isolated, the mice’s breathing remained neutral and controlled during normally anxiety-prone situations. This study, in addition to other recent research, supports a simple and easy routine to embed into your crazy, child-rearing, and hectic days. Breathing is not only free (unlike most things in NYC!) but also easy. Taking just four deep breaths and counting to five while you exhale calms your entire nervous system.
Breathe in. One, two, three. Breathe out. One, two, three, four, five. Breathe in. One, two, three. Breathe out. One, two, three, four, five. Feel better?
Modelling this for your children will teach them the importance of managing stress in a healthy way.