Advice Column, Health, Lifestyle, Parenting

How to beat the lockdown blues for kids during Covid 19

  • Nasreen Cariem
  • Category Advice Column, Health, Lifestyle, Parenting

The gift of time…something we all wish for and never seem to have enough of. Now that we have it, despite the circumstances we are experiencing, why does it seem that we can’t wait for it to end?

All those days where we wish to work from home and skip traffic, or those stressful days of work deadlines and wishing to have time at home in which to complete them.

I guess it’s human nature to want what we can’t have. A child does not know how badly they want the chocolate until they are warned not to have it. Similarly, with adults too.

Adults are now placed in a position where the daily race of responsibilities and pressure has slowed down. With this, they are now forced to face many factors in their lives which perhaps the daily race of life has allowed them to avoid facing. They may be in a position where they are now forced to confront both the positives and negative aspects in their lives. 

Children start missing school only now that they have been told that they can’t go to school for a long time still. All of a sudden they are bored and parents are finding that they are battling to juggle meeting work from home deadlines along with home schooling their kids and keeping them entertained too.

We are witnessing a new history that will be the talk of many conversations in future years to come. The world has been facing its first lockdown.

A deep sense of anxiety around the COVID 19 virus has engulfed all of our minds. We look forward to going out to get groceries, simply because it enables us an opportunity to get out of the house, have a change of scenery even if for a quick few minutes. Yet even that becomes an anxiety provoking experience due to the fear and thoughts running through one’s mind, “Have I taken adequate precaution? Are these shopping bags safe to bring into my home? I wonder if anyone with the virus has touched any of these items?’ The list goes on and at the end of the day, we are never able to have full certainty as to whether we are one hundred percent safe or not. The fear of the unknown is extremely strong and it now lives within all of our minds. 

Here are 12 tips on how to deal with the lockdown blues:

  1. Ensure that your family is educated on the necessary precautions such as washing hands frequently, to avoid touching their faces and disinfecting the exterior of products bought from the supermarkets where possible. Also to remember to wear masks and gloves when going to the supermarkets to obtain essential supplies.
  2. Schedule a routine  – A routine provides structure both for children and parents alike and sets the tone for the day. 
  3. Set boundaries. Remember that your children are dependent on those boundaries as this is what they are used to having at school. They need boundaries and structure to keep them disciplined. This will also enable a quicker reintegration back to school. 
  4. Set a deadline for your children in terms of finishing schoolwork and for yourselves as well in terms of finishing deadlines. It also allows for working towards a target. Humans perform naturally better under pressure
  5. Allow for frequent rest periods – Create a lunch hour or two at a time which suits you. During this time, the family gets an opportunity to bond and parents have an opportunity to unwind and relax.
  6. Have empathy – Remember that kids are also going through their own sense of confusion and uncertainty and all they truly need is lots of love and reassurance, as well as the feeling of safety.
  7. Use this as an opportunity to bond with your kids and to get to know them even better. Provide them with a safe platform to express themselves, their fears and anxieties.
  8. Arrange opportunities for your kids to socialise with their friends via online mediums so that they are able to remain in touch. 
  9. Ensure that they have a well balanced diet during this time as it would be natural that all this time at home might make them feel peckish throughout the day. 
  10. Remain in touch with your child’s teachers and class parents in order to keep abreast of prescribed tasks for home schooling due to the lockdown.
  11. Set personal goals for yourselves for example, that weight loss challenge that you have been wanting to implement for yourself but haven’t had that time or wanting to create a fitness plan to stay fit and healthy. Now is the perfect time to implement that goal as we have nowhere else to be. 
  12. Make the most of this time that you may never have again! Remember to teach your kids to focus on their blessings during crises ie. A roof over their heads and good food to eat. They will gain inspiration from400 you and maybe even tell their kids someday about their super hero parents who made lockdown awesome ☺

We are facing a time of many changes, both positive and negative. The challenges and uncertainties will definitely teach us to love ourselves more, and to value the times with all our loved ones, especially our elderly family members. However surely with this very rare and historic opportunity to reboot ourselves, reset our mind-sets, clean out our closets both physically and mentally, we will certainly evolve towards immense personal growth and development. We can find a way to live a meaningful life despite COVID 19.

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