How to Help Your Child Adjust to Change
What does change mean for kids? What is the best way for kids to understand change? What makes them react the way they do? What, above all, can you do to make it simpler and more helpful to their development?
Change is a big aspect of our life; some people even argue it’s the only constant. However, certain changes are more important and larger than others, and as a result, these changes should be managed correctly to cause the least amount of worry and nurture the most gain. This post is for you if you want to learn how to assist your child to adjust to change.
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Change Is Hard
The majority of attachment talks centre on the primary caregivers and their attitude to the kid; nevertheless, human attachment is much broader: we connect to places, circumstances, and people in these situations and locations. We value the assurance and security that comes from understanding and anticipating the unknown, as well as the methods in which we handle these commonplace circumstances.
Many people are uneasy with major changes; think how difficult it is for a toddler, whose entire view of life is still based on the things she is about to lose. A major shift, such as relocating, transferring residences, or moving up a class at daycare or school, can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be.
There is always a chance to develop, learn, and mature when faced with a difficulty. Here’s how and when to start helping your child adjust to change:
How To Help Your Child Adjust To Change
Expect a changeover if you’ve been talking about it and building up anticipation and enthusiasm for the approaching shift, and your young one was really into it and everything looked to be going swimmingly. The realization will creep in sooner rather than later, and worries will start crawling up and out. What was once “wow, we’re moving, and I’ll get a new and cool room” has now become “wow, we’re moving, and I’ll get a new and cool room!” It’s easy to get into the trap of saying, “No, I’m not going, I’m staying in my room forever!” Don’t think of this as stubborn or rebellious; your child is now grasping what’s going on and what it means to him, and that’s a big thing. This is a typical indicator of when it’s time to start working and how strong you are.
Many instinctive reactions include phrases such as “don’t worry, you’ll be OK,” “don’t be foolish, of course, you want to move!” and “there’s no turning back now.” These replies should be avoided because “you’ll be OK” is a notion that a toddler can’t comprehend, “of course you want to move” is a callous disdain for his feelings, and “there’s nothing we can do about it” will make your child feel compelled to accept the new circumstance. Ignorance and compulsion are concepts you should avoid at all costs.
It’s a little simpler with the more chatty toddlers since we can ask them directly what causes them. We’ll have to make the best of it with the younger ones and assume, rather than asking a question. Validation is crucial. Toddlers (and adults, for that matter) want a sense of being understood and known. Validating all of your childrens feelings will give her the confidence to begin the real coping process.
Communicate The Loss
You need to be in a familiar and comfortable setting, but you’re worried you won’t enjoy your new room? Do you need to remain in touch with your pals, but you’re worried about not seeing them as much as you used to? You need to know that you are loved and appreciated, and you worry about meeting the new teachers? You feel safe when you know precisely how you feel, but what if you’re both delighted and hesitant at the same time, and these emotions are confusing you?
This is the way to go: notice how each question/statement addresses both the underserved need and the emotion it elicits. Don’t be scared to use “big” words; on the contrary, this is an excellent chance to go deeper into your toddler’s heart, assisting her in navigating a range of emotions, and learning more about herself. The more you attend to her wants and feelings, the simpler it will be for her to break down the issue into manageable chunks.
By establishing an unseen yet palpable line between the current state and the future, this phase provides continuity and keeps the shift from feeling so narrow and straightforward. Knowing that our needs will be addressed in the new environment gives us great comfort and helps us to relax and look forward to the transition. This is especially true for toddlers, whose perception is confined to their own demands.
Allow him to pick which objects stay and which go in a familiar, homey atmosphere. If he refuses to let go of anything, pack everything he desires. Ask him what he wants to display on the walls in his new apartment or house; if he wants a dinosaur poster, go purchase one. It’s much great if you have photos of your new place. Allow him to pack or take whatever portion of the relocation he wants. Take photos of the present room and tell him he may look at them whenever he wants and tell you how much he liked it.
Need to connect and keep in contact with friends: I’m not a huge lover of modernism in general, but technology is fantastic. Even though some of these friendships won’t last a lifetime, WhatsApp, Skype, and FaceTime are wonderful methods to keep connected. It’s soothing to know that you can communicate and see each other. Show him how to use these applications and gather a group of pals. Tell him that his friends will be able to visit him, and that he will be able to see them (but only if it is truly possible; we don’t want to make promises we can’t fulfil).
Need for autonomy: Any change to our surrounding environment impacts our freedom, independence, and spontaneity since it affects our ability to select (how can I pick if I don’t know what alternatives are available?). Children are more sensitive to this than adults because they have a strong desire to control their immediate surroundings. It is critical to familiarise yourself with the new surroundings prior to the actual move. It could be a new residence, a new daycare, a new school, or something else. Take a walk around the room and utilize your imagination, which is your most powerful weapon in this circumstance. Assist your child in imagining what he’ll do in each area, what activities he’ll play, and where he’ll sleep and eat.
The desire for meaning, which encompasses expression, involvement, hope, learning, contribution, and many other elements, is also harmed by major transitions since we alter who we are as we go from one circumstance to the next. Again, the greatest approach to relax the mind is to use your imagination; try listening more than talking. When you’re ready to say anything, change it to a question and let him speak for himself. This is a fantastic opportunity to learn a lot about the inner workings of the mind.
Celebrate Important Attachments
Attachments are our life’s anchor and compass; once we lose one, it’s more vital than ever to strengthen the remaining one. If you’ve read thus far, you’re most likely the childrens primary caretaker, either mother or father. Every other placement, every other attachment in his life begins with you, because you are the most essential anchor in his existence. Repeat throughout the previous and subsequent phases that you are always there for him and that you adore him. There’s nothing he can say or do to make you love him more, and there’s nothing he can say or do to make you hate him. That the world may change, but you will not; you are here to stay. You won’t believe the difference if you ask him to rely on you at this difficult time.
A toddler, in particular, needs a strong and solid relationship with his or her parents. The following are particular examples of how to develop the six bases of attachment that are appropriate at any age:
Proximity: use both your childrens and your own senses. Look him in the eyes, kiss him, embrace him, and get as near as possible to him.
Sameness: “jump” on anything he says, claiming that you are the same. Is he looking for pasta? This is also one of your favourite foods! Is there a particular book or character that he enjoys? That’s also your favourite. If it’s pleasant for both of you, you can even dress similar for a bit.
Belonging: Allowing him to undertake minor chores for you and to somewhat pamper you is a sign of belonging. Request a drink of water and express your gratitude for his bringing it to you. Include him in as many activities as you can to make him feel a part of your life and what you’re going through.
Significance: Make certain that nothing he does goes undetected. To fulfil your childrens desire for importance, you must address his or her innermost qualities; this will appear different for everyone because we are all unique. Let him know how important he is to you and how much you value all he does. Celebrate your child.
Love: Love should be straightforward enough. But it isn’t true. I adore him. No matter what he does, or how difficult he is at the time, don’t take away his attachment.
Being Known: If you know your child well, this will be simple. Make him his favourite meals, tell him his favourite jokes and tales, propose that he watch his favourite movie, and, in general, always (or at least most of the time) be one step ahead of him.
Change Is A Part Of Life
Change is a part of life. Helping your child adjust to change will make the adjustment process easier on them and you, too! To get started with helping your child adapt effectively, it could be helpful to consider when they might need help adjusting. For instance, if you are moving across town or have been transferred at work, for example, try working in some time before the big day for packing up their room and showing them what all of their new belongings look like as well as exploring different parts of the neighbourhood together so that they feel more comfortable about leaving home. If they’re going from one class level to another- such as kindergarten to first grade- give plenty of notice beforehand so that both parent and child can prepare themselves mentally
What You Should Do Next:
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