Recently, I was giving a work/life balance training. In it, I shared how I got into the stress management business. I tell the story of my entire life falling apart and not knowing what to do and how to cope because my parents never sat me down and gave me the “stress talk.” I dropped down to 97 pounds, and stress about killed me. It was then I decided I better figure out how to handle stress in a healthy way because life IS stress. Anyone telling you that you can live stress-free is lying and trying to sell you something!
Were you introduced to stress management early on?
In almost 30 years of giving this program, I have had only ONE person say that their parents gave them “the stress talk.” The rest of us went blindly into the world with ZERO stress management tools. We were told not to do drugs or drink, but no one told us what we SHOULD do to de-stress. A parent in the audience said, “Wow. I just realized that I should be helping my kids with stress!”
We need to teach kids how to manage life & stress
As a society, we are so concerned with the sex talk that we forget to equip kids with real-life skills on how to cope the tough stuff. We run them ragged with activities, exhaust them to the breaking point, and expect them to handle anything thrown at them. Yet, we do not teach them HOW to face challenges. And unfortunately, life seems to be getting more complicated and more challenging for kids every day. What we are seeing—in my opinion—are kids freaking out and not knowing what the heck to do about it because they were given drugs to settle them down rather than actual skills, techniques, and tools for coping. They are up shit creek without a paddle!
If we want a safer world for our kids, then WE need to teach them how to manage their stress. Adults (parents, teachers, coaches, neighbors, friends, aunts, and uncles) need to be sharing with kids what to do when things don’t go as planned or totally flop.
The time to address this problem isn’t when kids fall off the rails. No, the time is NOW. Spend time discussing what upset feelings they may have and what they are going to do about it. Social media has made us lazy and self-absorbed, but some things can’t be gleamed on the internet. Kids need roll models and healthy examples.
Kids learn how to manage stress from the adults in their lives
When 70 percent of moms are taking anti-depressants to boost their energy, we have a problem at home. How can kids learn to act and behave better when they aren’t seeing healthy behaviors in their parents? That is where we must begin. We must show that a better way exists and is possible.
If you don’t feel like you have the tools yourself, hire a life coach or see a family therapist. Make stress management a priority in your family because it impacts us all. What your kids do or don’t do will have consequences for a lifetime. A safer world starts at home
If you are looking for ideas on how to lessen your stress, get a copy of my AFFORDABLE and resourceful book, A Healthier, Happier You with 101 tips for reducing your stress and managing it in a healthy manner.