How to Instill Self-Care in Kids From an Early Age By Anya Willis


 Anya Willis is a mother of three and has been a yoga instructor for the past 12 years. For most of her childhood, Anya struggled with her weight. In school, she was bullied because of it, and it wasn’t until she took a yoga class in college that things started to change. She fell in love with how yoga used her whole body and mind. For Anya this was the catalyst she needed, she found a new interest in her physical health and started striving for a healthier life. Reflecting on her younger years, Anya became passionate about kids being active and healthy.

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How to Instill Self-Care in Kids From an Early Age

Teaching kids good self-care habits plays an important role in their overall development. Engaging in self-care activities makes children aware of their emotional and physical needs, in addition to developing independence in handling them. Today, WellKind School for Early Learners explores precisely how parents can take the lead role in teaching kids about self-care.

Start With the Basics

Simple activities such as brushing, bathing, and wearing clothes create the foundation for learning about self-care. While for adults these are basic activities for kids they can be viewed as a big achievement.

Parents can start teaching their kids to manage these activities from the age of 2. As a start, allow your child to undertake simple steps such as squeezing toothpaste onto the brush, filling the bathtub, etc. As they grow older, they’ll naturally show the initiative to manage these tasks independently.

Simultaneously, allow your child to help you with chores around the home. This can involve wiping dishes, unloading clothes from the dryer, cleaning their room, etc. These activities will help develop a sense of responsibility and teach them the basics of managing a home, a challenge that they are bound to face further down in life.

Shopping for healthy and well-made products for your family doesn’t have to be difficult. Whether you’re purchasing kitchen or bedroom items, always consult reviews and ratings to find high-quality products that are safe for your family.

Focus on Mental Health

While giving your child a mobile phone or tablet will keep them occupied for hours, it can have various negative effects on their mental health and behavior. As reported by the AACAP, screen time for kids between the age of 2-5 years should be limited to 3 hours a day.

Dependence on technology can lead to them becoming addicted to social media in the near future, which as research shows can lead to higher levels of stress and anxiety. Hence, from a young age, expose them to activities that help their mental and cognitive development in a healthy way. This can include solving puzzles, playing board games, exploring the world of arts and crafts, engaging in imaginative play, and more.

Additionally, as the Indian Express points out, a positive home environment plays a key role in helping children develop good mental health. Parents can create a positive environment by decluttering the home, allowing kids to play in a clean and safe space, ensuring the home has ample natural light, adding houseplants, and providing unconditional love and support at all times.

As part of modeling good self-care for both mental and physical health, make sure regular doctor’s visits are a part of your routine. What’s covered will depend on your insurance, so be sure to shop the health insurance exchange if you don’t have insurance offered by your employer. You want to ensure that both you and your child are kept in good health.


Teach Them to Express

Feelings can be an abstract concept for children to grasp. However, teaching your child to become mindful of their emotions will help them take a big step toward maturity. An effective way to help your child learn about feelings is to use mediums such as storybooks. When the character faces a difficult situation in the story, take a pause and ask your child what they think the character would be feeling at that point.

Another key takeaway from this activity will be your child developing empathy. Once they understand the impact their actions can have on others, they’re less likely to act out. Additionally, it will motivate them to be kind and caring towards others, helping them develop strong social connections in the present and the future.

Dancing classes are a great way for kids to express themselves creatively. Learning how to move, groove, and dance can allow children to gain an outlet for self-expression in a way that is positive and creative. These classes can foster team-building skills such as cooperation and communication, as well as promote problem-solving capabilities and self-expression through movement.

Another avenue for creative expression is through STEM fields. Learning about robotics and programming, for example, can foster creativity while also teaching problem-solving.


Teach Them About Business

 Another great way to help prepare your children for the business world is to let them in on your business-related decisions. For instance, if you’re starting your own business and trying to choose a business structure, talk to them about the different options you considered. If you chose to form a limited liability company through ZenBusiness, give them the basics on why an LLC was the way to go (probably because of the tax benefits and legal protections) and show them how you conducted your research. That way, you’ll be laying an excellent foundation for them to one day start a business of their own!

Involve Your Children in Other Decisions

 There are other important decisions that impact the entire family as well, so why not include them in the decision-making process? For instance, if you’re thinking about moving to a different house and you’re checking the rental market, you’ll see that there are 23 available in Scranton, so your children can look over the amenities and locations and help you narrow down your list! This will teach them valuable analytical skills they can take with them for the rest of their lives.


Incorporate Daily Downtime

Teaching your child the importance of downtime will play a big role in them being able to handle the fast-paced life they’ll experience post-adulthood. While there is no right or wrong way to practice downtime, it should include engaging in activities that help you unwind, alleviate stress, and take a break from everything around you. This can include taking a nap, cloud gazing from your garden, reading a book, etc.

Meditation is another form of downtime that you can introduce to your children. Not only can meditation give them an opportunity to clear their minds and refocus their thoughts and energies, but Headspace points out that meditation has also been shown to help kids with learning and thinking processes. It can also help them develop stronger attention spans. Many online meditation tutorials can help your children get started.

Practicing downtime yourself is the best way to teach your child to do the same. Hence, each day reserve at least 30 minutes to spend some downtime with your child, whether it be in the middle of your workday, in the evening, or as a pre-bed ritual.

Teaching self-care to children is not a one-time activity. Rather, it’s a practice you’ll need to follow throughout their childhood and beyond. But from encouraging them to express themselves to teaching them the basics about business, there’s so much you can do to help! Then, at each step of the process, you’ll observe your child slowly developing good habits that will eventually lead to them becoming mature adults.