New beginnings can be exciting for some. For my eleven-year-old, it’s overwhelming! – Ken
Fresh start excites some but, just like me, it scares my eleven-year-old daughter who’s getting ready to enter middle school in less than two weeks. To help ease her nervousness, I’m doing or have already done the following:
- I’ve included her in the selection process – I believe it was important to have her voice heard. I also kept her informed along the way, which put her mind at ease to a certain degree. We attended several open houses together during the fall and we fully explained our reasons for the choices we were making. As expected, she had a mouthful to say. Particularly, why we were not sending her to the same school as her friends.
- I investigated and discovered a friend of hers will be attending the same school and scheduled a play-date before the start of school – she’s actually looking forward to this.
- Familiarizing myself with the school policies and the administration, so that I’m knowledgeable and have an answer for every question she throws at me. Coming across knowledgeable to your child can reduce their anxiety and stress. And, this mamma is ready!!!
- When the above fails, because there’s a possibility all of it will. Remind your kid(s) of other “first” moments they’ve experienced. For example, I’m constantly saying do you remember the first day of elementary school, your first audition, first time on set, the first time you saw yourself on an ad in a store, etc., This allows her (at least for a second) to think of other first moments, when she initially felt nervous and how quickly she overcame those feelings.
- Last, but definitely not least, keep the conversation going beyond the first day or week. But, most importantly, be honest and patient! Remind your kids it will be an amazing year and that this new beginning will soon be a positive memory. At least that’s what I’m telling my baby girl.
What are some things you’ve done (or currently doing) to help your child with eliminating or reducing the stress of new beginnings? Sound off in the comments….we want to hear from you.