The COVID -19 situation has caught the whole humanity by surprise. The world has been brought to a standstill and we are all forced to be in physical isolation. This physical isolation is very important for our physical health, but it is taking a toll on our mental well-being, be it children or the adults.
In these difficult times, it is important that we give emphasis to the mental health of the children. The children are in a continuous state of high anxiety, as they are away from their friends, are not able to perform their activities like going to school, go out for play and for other leisure activities. Also lack of any certainty about the future adds on to this anxiety.
In this article I will be sharing some pointers to help with forming a foundation for their overall well being and to build resilience and strength in children during these difficult times.
Foundation for Good Physical Health
Increase your physical health by following good practices for physical well being. These include having a healthy diet, forming an exercise routine, and having adequate sleep.
Healthy diet: Research has shown that there is a strong connection between the gut health and the mental health. There is an old saying too “Healthy mind lives in a Healthy body”. So it is important to take care of what you are putting in your system. Include more of fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet and reduce the processed foods.
Physical exercise: Exercise is important as it not only produces a healthy body but a healthy mind too. When a person exercises a lot of hormones are released by the body. Endorphins are one such group of hormones. These cause an increased sense of well being and lift up the mood and reduce anxiety. Include any kind of activity for at least 30 minutes daily.
Good sleep: A good sleep restores the body to its optimum working condition, and also restores the brain to its optimum working conditions. All the repair and maintenance of the body takes place at that time. To get good sleep it is important to have a certain discipline about your sleep routine. The timing of going to bed should be fixed and should not vary much.
Foundation for Good Mental Health
Mental health is one thing which depends on a lot of different parameters for different people. Here I am listing a few points which will cover many things.
Be connected socially: We humans are social beings, and thrive on social bonds. These problems are cropping up as we are forced to be away in isolation. Ensure that your child is connected to their friends through the technology. We are blessed to have such advanced technology where we can be in touch with anyone across the world. Make sure they are connected to grandparents or relatives who really matter to them.
Develop a hobby: By hobby I mean an activity where the child can have fun, is free, and the creative ideas are flowing. It should be something where the child gets completely lost. It is during such activity that the brain releases certain feel good hormones which help in reducing anxiety to a great extent.
Foundation for a Good Emotional Health
These are certain habits which I strongly feel should be a part of the life from the childhood. These habits give the children a lot of grounding, resilience, and mental strength. If children are given these values from a young age they will assist them in every aspect of life from effective decision making, to learning and importantly to their overall well being. Some of these practices are listed below.
- Practising deep breathing
- Concentrating in the present (taking one day at a time)
- Forming a routine
- Checking-in with your emotions
Dr. Mona Gujral is a Gurgaon based Mindful Parenting Coach, Speaker and Author. She helps parents who want to create enriching relationships with their children and raise incredibly confident, happy, fully expressed kids who are thriving emotionally.
Her mission is to transform parenting with a more aware and mindfulness based approach, so that both the parents and children have a joyful bond.
She believes in inspiring and supporting parents back to their intuition and healing whatever holds parents and children back from living their best selves.
Mona has been effectively trying to introduce mindfulness into the parent child relationship. She helps guide parents back to creating deeply loving communication and memorable experiences with their kids, so they want to listen and be guided by them. And in the process highlighting the subtle unmindful interactions that create distance, frustration, resistance and power-struggles between parents and children.
For the last few years, Mona has helped parents in tackling the most challenging of parenting issues and offers private coaching and courses for parents who wish to grow and transform alongside their children. She has offered talks to schools and companies who wish to guide and support staff, educators and parents in offering their best selves to this world.
In the COVID time she has helped numerous individuals to hone and develop their awareness about emotional well being and helped them make mindfulness a part of their life.