Happy Children with Beautiful Minds
In an ideal world, we would picture childhood as a time of joy and fun, for games and adventures; however, the reality is that many children today undergo feelings of pressure and stress from a very early age.
Interestingly, our children today are growing up in an environment that is not only fast paced, but also overloaded with information and technology! The essence of life tends to attain instant gratification with all the gaming and virtual experiences. This may not be a bad thing in its entirety, however, it can have a strong influence on their precious developmental years from a mind- body perspective.
Additionally, there is a tremendous pressure on children to cope with the growing demands of education and competition, which can make them grow up far before their time. The typical day for a 21st century kid is hurried and burdened with long school hours, followed by multiple classes, activities, and then projects, homework and assignments, which leaves a trivial amount time for kids to just be “lazy and daydream”. Hence, this tends to result in them constantly feeling rushed, impatient, stressed, and many times, anxious too.
In such a scenario, it is required that schools and educational institutes go beyond their existing role and offer opportunities and possibilities, which take into account the significance of the mental wellbeing of its students.
Typically, the primary contributors shaping the personality of a child are the people living at home, such as parents, grandparents, nannies, and then the teachers and friends at school. Since children spend a majority of their waking hours at school, the classroom is the perfect setting to create awareness, shift perceptions, and bring attention to mental health and wellbeing for children and the parents involved.
Children can often be silent sufferers of bullying, peer pressure, low self-esteem, dysfunctional families, child abuse, learning delays, attention disorders and much more, which often creates setbacks in their overall growth and development.
Thus, it is important that schools step up and play an active role to detect these signs at an early stage, and encourage children to open up and communicate their problems, as this allows effective solutions, such as counseling, coaching and therapies, to be provided as needed by the child.
A healthy body is not complete without a healthy mind and its time more efforts are made by teachers and parents to end the stigma around emotional and mental sufferings.
Studies tell us that more and more children are being diagnosed with anxiety and depression all over the world. It is time that these children feel comfortable and not judged when they muster the courage to discuss their emotional and mental issues. Practical tools and techniques such as breathing, meditation, mindfulness, emotion intelligence … must be taught to children to better manage their lives; so they can feel safe and receive support without feeling alone.
We need teachers and parents encouraging children to come to them, to be able to open up to each other and talk freely!
Its time that more people realize that mental wellbeing is just as important as physical health. The new generation of children must learn that treating their emotional and mental issues is akin to treating a fever or a stomach bug.
A happy mind is the foundation for a happy childhood and the years that follow!