Children have the most worry-free lives. It’s true, because they (hopefully) haven’t gone through life-changing experiences that can scar you for life and leave you with anxiety.
Also, what adult doesn’t live with anxiety in one way or another? And if you’re a good parent, you wouldn’t want to pass those on to your children. But believe it or not, it could take some effort to shield them from it.
No matter how hard you consciously try to hide your anxiety from your kids—in order not to worry them or teach them to worry about the same things you do—you will subconsciously clue them in on your troubles. They will turn up in your actions and even in the most regular activities that you do for and with your children.
To help you become more aware, here are the 3 most common ways that you might be passing your anxiety on to your children:
1. Being a perfectionist
Many moms grow up having some level of OCD, more so once they have children. When you have children, you adhere to a strict schedule, you do more cleaning than you ever did in your life, and you have a specific standards when it comes to raising your kids. In those things, it’s easy to want to be a total perfectionist and not realize it.
The problem here is that your kids will later become anxious about the time as they get used to how you function around the house and forget to live in the moment. It’s better for the parent (you) to be the time keeper and keep your kids from hurrying like robots and always asking you about whether or not they’re already late.
2. Focusing on the bad
When you have anxiety, you normally focus on what could go wrong. And when you do, you get used to worrying about everything. It might not necessarily affect your performance negatively, you get tired while you overprepare and feel paranoid. This one’s easier for your kids to see, so it will eventually teach them how to focus on the bad—just to be “safe”—and later refuse to try something first, based on questionable odds of it not working out. Before it’s too late, it’d be better to tell your kids that trying is more important than succeeding.
3. Setting (and keeping) boundaries
However you were brought up, it’s important that you’re reminded of the fact that even your kids have rights and boundaries that should be respected. Getting used to people disrespecting your privacy or personal space doesn’t mean you should let yourself forget about others’—especially your kids’. As early as possible, teach them the value of personal space and how to respect the words “no” and “stop.” This way, they’ll also know how to fight for their own privacy and stand firm when they refuse.
If you worry, you can always have your children checked for anxiety. It may not be obvious to you, so there may be a need for observation and at least an online test.
Compliments of Best Mom TV