Coping strategies for children's Christmas anxiety

The festive season often evokes images of joyous children eagerly unwrapping presents and revelling in the magic of Christmas. However, as a mother of two and a clinical hypnotherapist specialising in child anxiety, I've come to understand that not every child shares the same enthusiasm. While Christmas indeed brings joy, it can also be a source of heightened stress for some children. In this article, I will address common concerns children face during the holiday season and explore effective coping strategies to support both children and their parents.


Navigating present pressures: Unwrapping the gift of calm

The pursuit of the perfect gift can be a stressor for many, including our little ones. It's crucial to open up a channel of communication with your child about their feelings regarding gifts.

Emphasise the joy derived from giving and the thought behind presents to cultivate a positive mindset. Share personal stories of cherished presents, underlining the satisfaction that comes from thoughtful gift-giving. By reinforcing the importance of meaningful gestures, you help shape a positive perspective on the act of giving.

Dealing with family gatherings: Navigating the social season

Christmas often marks the last gathering of the year for families and friends. While this can be a joyous occasion, it can also be overwhelming for children who find social situations challenging.

Take a moment to guide your child through the upcoming gatherings. Share anecdotes about the relatives they may encounter to offer a sense of familiarity and comfort. Additionally, empower your child by establishing a safe word or signal they can use if feeling overwhelmed. This grants them a sense of control in social situations, fostering a more positive experience.

Maintaining holiday routine: Finding comfort in structure

Children thrive on routine, and the disruption that holidays bring can lead to distress. Crafting a flexible holiday routine can provide a sense of structure amidst the festivities.

Consider scheduling a daily family walk at a specific time, irrespective of the weather. Incorporate enjoyable activities that strike a balance between the excitement of the season and the comfort of familiar routines. This balance can be a soothing balm for children who find solace in the predictability of their daily lives.

Easing back-to-school anxiety: Transitioning with confidence

As the new year and term approach, the prospect of change can trigger anxiety in some children. Alleviate their concerns about returning to school by highlighting the positive aspects of the upcoming term. Employ guided imagery to foster positive associations with the academic challenges ahead.

If feasible, organise playdates closer to the beginning of the term or plan to walk to school with friends on the first day back. This helps in smoothing the transition and making the return to routine more enjoyable.

Creating positive associations with holidays: Unwinding the mind

Fostering a calm and balanced mindset lays the foundation for a hopeful future. Drawing from my experience working with children of various ages, early exposure to relaxation techniques can have a transformative impact. In a tech-driven era that encourages constant thinking, dedicating time to relax the mind is crucial for all ages.

Incorporate simple hypnotherapy exercises to establish positive associations with holiday events. Visualisation and relaxation techniques can reshape negative perceptions, enhancing the overall holiday experience.

Integrating these coping strategies into your holiday approach can significantly reduce your child's anxiety. Keep in mind that each child is unique, so feel free to customise these strategies to fit your child's specific needs. If concerns persist, consider reaching out for assistance through face-to-face sessions or by opting for a personalised recording tailored to address specific concerns.

Wishing you and your child a holiday season filled with joy and free from stress!

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Hypnotherapy Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Solihull, B91
Written by Angela Cain, D.M.H, D.Hyp, CPNLP - Clinical Hypnotherapist
Solihull, B91

Angela Cain Clinical Hypnotherapist
D.M.H, D.Hyp, CPNLP,

I specialise in stress and anxiety, especially in teenagers and young adults. I use a unique combination of treatments and therapies including E.M.D.R, NLP, Meridian Tapping, and Hypnotherapy. I have a clinic in The Midlands and I am an Associate within a Harley Street practice.

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