Do you sometimes feel there’s a certain fear overwhelming your kids for not meeting expectations, be it academically or socially? Perhaps both?
In today’s world, it’s easy to feel that we’re the only ones experiencing this kind of thing, however, the truth is: it’s rather common for kids and teenagers to struggle with shyness and social insecurity, fear of failure. It’s not rocket science, can be difficult to participate in social settings, even in the classroom. It’s easy to feel constantly watched, observed, and judged.
Let’s be totally honest, adults are not exempt from this experience either.
At Tutor Partners, we want kids and teenagers to realize, that this is more widespread than they think. Throughout our lives, we address similar feelings and situations; this is purely life.
With every movement they make, every word they say, kids and teenagers tend to become exceedingly aware and conscious of their differences. “Just be yourself”, or “Just relax” doesn’t seem achievable when you’re not at ease around other people in the first place.
For years we’ve heard the words ‘embrace individualism’ and ‘be comfortable in your own skin’. However, when we look at society’s standardized boxes we’re expected to fit generally, there’s frequently an attitude of “get over it.”
And you know what?
Absolutely. We do need to move forward.
This is not about victimhood.
It’s about accountability. As adults let’s be conscious of our actions, too.
No matter the age, twisting into a human pretzel in order for acceptance or ‘status’ is not necessarily a pleasant experience – it’s draining…
In contrast, when we’re able to be our authentic selves, doing something we love and believe in, there’s engagement and happiness.
We tend to forget that.
What The “A”?
The old adage of ‘avoiding reality becomes so, primarily because of expectations. If we’re busy worrying about what others think or how “A+” your kid is, then that pressure is transferred. Anxiety in this case, is likely to rear its ugly head.
(An “A” has to be something that’s wanted and earned).
Our view at Tutor Partners is that anxiety shouldn’t impede our kids and teens from doing what they need to do. Action is key.
The words ‘You are not alone in this feeling’, is a phrase we find isn’t enough when the experience feels personally intense.
So together, how we can truly support our kids in managing that everyday anxiety? Tutor Partners offers programs to combat this, and help you and your kids/teens/family face anxiety head-on. Here are some tips for:
Acknowledge your child’s fear – numerous Mental Health Professionals suggest, not dismissing or ignoring it.
It is particularly vital you express that you believe in their ability to overcome fears. Your child/teen needs to know explicitly that you’ll be there to support them, no matter what.
- Embrace the small steps. Set smaller goals for attempting things, despite/alongside anxiousness. Set up those safe spaces for them to practice (a presentation). Resist the temptation to take control.
- Failure is not the end of the world. Everybody can find a way to grow from mistakes.
- Patience is key. We all know arguments, cause pushback, especially if your child or teen is strong-willed. Remind your child that emotions are important. There will always be times where they experience an intense range of emotions and that sometimes these can be strong, overwhelming.
- As wishy-washy as it might seem, discussing emotions is critical for grounding the intensity. – This sends the message that all emotions are valued, both positive and negative, come and go.
- Actively listen. This can help your child identify their thoughts and feelings, which is the first step to dealing with them.
“Learn the art of patience. Apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure. Patience creates confidence, decisiveness, and a rational outlook, which eventually leads to success.”
~ Brian Adams
Love and support, in life and routine
- Your love expresses everything. A hug shows you’re there when they’re feeling anxious, down, or on a rollercoaster of emotion.
- Avoid labeling your child as ‘shy’ or ‘anxious’. Who needs labels?
- Make time for simple, relaxing things. Such as playing or listening to music, reading books, or nature walks.
- Encourage a healthy lifestyle with plenty of physical activity, sleep, and healthy eating. Also, address the hard stuff such as illicit drug use as a coping mechanism.
- Be conscious of how you manage your own stress and anxiety. Oh, how we impact sometimes without realizing it, huh?
Reach out to us at Tutor Partners today. We’re here to help. Your kids and teens care about making you proud. We need to acknowledge so long as they actively commit to doing their best, that’s all we really should be asking for.
Just be, live freely.