Calendar Recipe Box Shopping List Address Book

Stressed Out Kids? Slow Down!

Stressed Out Kids? Slow Down!

If you think your kids are stressed from overscheduling, help is at hand. Slowing down is good for the whole family!

By FamilyTime

  Print: Full Page
Text Only
  Email: Article
   Find: More Articles

If you sense your children are feeling the burden of too much structured time and not enough down time, think about pulling back. Everyone will benefit.

Child-Friendly Down Time
The secret to a stress-free child is balance. Encourage any interest your child might have — be it stamp collecting, swimming, or playing the violin. But also underscore the importance of family activities.

Children under age seven benefit enormously from imaginative play. This is how they learn creative thinking and problem solving.

Because children are as different from each other as adults are, as they get older some need more down time than others. This could be reading or hanging out with friends; for others it could be pursuing a hobby or playing with younger siblings.

Some parents fear that if they let their children back out of planned activities they will spend all their time watching television or playing mindless video games. They also worry the children will never develop outside interests.

As a parent, you can set limits on television watching and computer time.

As children grow, their interests become apparent. Nurture these as they appear, and learn to separate your goals and aspirations from your child's!

How Many Extra Activities Are Enough?
Stress-free, simple activities and play groups are great for preschoolers, particularly those kids who don't spend much time with other children. Just one or two activities a week is all a youngster needs — and both you and the child should truly enjoy the experience.

Older children benefit from organized sports, music lessons, and organized groups. They might complain about going but if they are all smiles after the class or practice, encourage them to continue.

Don't neglect your parental commitment. Be there to cheer on the team or to applaud at the piano recital.

When Is Too Much Too Much? 
A sure-fire indicator that your child is over-programmed is if she flatly refuses to participate or develops devious avoidance tactics. Let her make the decision to quit.

If this happens, don't let your child feel like a failure for making his life a little easier and more balanced.

As kids grow up, they change. What might have seemed like the ideal number of activities one year may not be right the next. Your son or daughter may decide to tackle new challenges as they grow, ones that you fear will be too much. 

Keep an eye on how your children react to their schedules through the years, knowing that the number of activies will wax and wane. The goal is a happy, active kid who gets done what needs doing (homework, practice, and so forth) and still has a smile on his face at the end of the day!


Enter your email address to receive delicious, family-friendly recipes, exciting promotions, helpful articles and more delivered right to your mailbox. What could be better?


When You Are a Soccer Mom
Know the rules of the game -- and root for your team!
View Full Article

If Your Child Stutters
The more you know about stuttering, the better you and your child will feel.
View Full Article

What Every Parent Should Have On Hand
When your kids get a cold or the flu, have the right over-the-counter medications and use them correctly.
View Full Article

After the Divorce
Keeping the family's lines of communication open is more important then ever.
View Full Article

Reading to the Kids
Reading to our children at bedtime and other times during the day fosters closeness and gives kids one positive message after another.
View Full Article


Simply fill out the required fields to begin enjoying the benefits of – it’s fast and it’s free.
* required

Concerned about privacy? Rest assured, we never sell or share your personal information.
See our Privacy Policy.