The holidays are a time of family, traditions, and joy. However, they can also a time of upended routines, guests in the house, and overstimulation. For young children (and adults too!), the holidays can sometimes bring on highs and lows of strong emotions. Although it can be nearly impossible to eliminate those “low” moments of the holiday season, here we have shared a few tips to help keep the joy and love at the forefront of the season!
Look for ways to maintain your daily routine as much as possible.
Particularly for younger children, changes in routine can feel really hard. Although holidays will inevitably bring about change to their normal routine, there are often ways we can maintain a certain rhythm to the day that your child may find comforting. Many children may also find it helpful to be informed of routine changes ahead of time.
2. Include your child.
Think of ways that your child can be involved. For example, if your family prepares a big meal for Thanksgiving, consider ways your child could help with the preparations. Could they wash produce? Scrub and peel potatoes? Snap the stems off of green beans? Set the table? Having a purpose and a focus during a busy time can feel calming to your child while also giving them a confidence boost!
3. Plan down time.
Holidays can sometimes feel like a constant whirlwind of activity! Be sure to plan for down time where your child is able to relax, play at home, or rest.
4. Respect their needs (and don’t take it personally).
Sometimes as adults, it can be hard for us to not take our children’s emotions or needs personally. Especially around the holidays, when expectations for special, magical moments are high. However, it’s important that we avoid putting too much pressure on both ourselves and our children during this time of year. Observe and listen to your child’s needs, and yours too!