5 Tips To Keep your Sanity during the holidays

This is a stressful time of year for everyone.

 

We wanted to share 5 tips that may make the holidays more joyful!

 

Lead By Example

Your behavior directly impacts your child’s behavior. If  you’re stressed, anxious or overwhelmed, they will feel that. Try and stay calm. Model coping strategies like breathing, taking breaks, water breaks, and other self care techniques.

 

Structured Routines including Sensory Diets

For our sensory kids, a sensory diet may be a familiar term. A sensory diet is truly just a customized routine that incorporates sensory motor based activities to help keep kids at the optimal level of funtioning. I know what you are thinking….THIS WORKS FOR EVERYONE! By taking a little extra time to make a plan for the next day or week, this can greatly decrease any behaviors, like tantrums significantly. Sensory activities do not have to take a long time, 3, 5 or 10 minutes should do the trick. Think about these activities as “meals and snacks.” Providing them like breakfast, lunch and dinner with some snacks can help kids and you stay regulated.

 

Watch Their Diet

This time of year is full of cakes, cookies, candies and SUGAR! Its hard to say no to these items. However, there is so much research that shows the impacts of sugar and poor food choices has on little bodies. Were not saying take it away, just allow it in moderation.

 

Visual Schedule

This is a great way to keep everyone organized. Many preschools and kindergarten classrooms use this to help early readers learn routine and organization through pictures. You can print a few key routine activities and cut them out. Place them on a string with clothespins, use magnets on the fridge or any surface kids can see them. You can also draw pictures on a dry erase board. It’s really important to emphasize the BIG changes that may be coming. Activities like going on an airplane, a long car ride, meeting family members or friends you do not see often. Preparing kids for these transitions is critical and in the end helps you survive too!

 

Be Mindful

Mindfulness may be a buzz word, but in our busy lives, dialing it back, taking a break and acknowledging when your life is too much is an amazing skill. Tune in to when this may be too much for your child like asking you to leave, their behavior is getting aggressive, they are crying/screaming or they are sitting alone. With the overall stress of the holiday season, be mindful of group activities. It is ok to say no to a few holiday parties and not go to the museum with a group of 10 kids.