5 Ways to Mindfully Raise A Highly Sensitive Child
1. Instill boundaries before you reach the point of feeling overwhelmed.
In particular, if you did not develop appropriate boundaries as a kid, you may find it difficult to refuse your child as an HSP parent. While you are not alone, many HSPs experience guilt when establishing boundaries with close friends and family.
Yet, telling your kid “no” sometimes won’t harm them. According to research, you just need to be a good parent (predictable and sympathetic) 50% of the time to be effective. Giving your sensitive youngster the chance to do it right half the time will help them learn how to adapt to their surroundings. Hence, “good enough” does not equate to “insufficient.”
And once your child’s demands become too much for you to handle, attempt to establish limits in a manner that offers them a feeling of control by using gentle punishment. Giving your youngster an option can help you avoid a commotion.
Consider the scenario where you must attend a birthday celebration while your worried, very sensitive youngster is confined to the vehicle. “Your sister is ready to go inside for the birthday celebration,” you may remark. And so am I. How long do you want to enjoy some music in the vehicle before we enter?
Your child may say an hour, but she’ll probably give up after five minutes since she’s already decided to enter the party. Also, the fact that you offer her room reduces her urge to defend herself.
2. Don’t encourage dependence by enabling – instead, let your child learn from their mistakes.
HSPs are abundantly empathetic. Due to this, parents who are particularly sensitive may mistakenly associate acts of love with those of enabling and saving. Nevertheless, this isn’t love. That is really codependency, which very sensitive individuals may have trouble with.
It seems sense that you would want to help your kid. Yet, if you provide assistance without being requested, you’ll encourage their perfectionism and self-doubt. It is thus essential to trust your child and accept errors from them. So you’ll have more time for yourself while your toddler is busy exploring and making errors.
Here’s an illustration. Your six-year-old complains to you that other students at the robotics club were chatting to her despite the instructor instructing them to concentrate on the assignment. Well, I can speak to the instructor to relocate you to another group of pupils if you’d like, you may respond as a concerned HSP.
Yet once again, you would be attempting to address your child’s issue. It would be better to look for non-interactive alternatives as a substitute.
3. Hold space for them emotionally rather than rescue.
None of us were equipped to deal with strong emotions from birth. Also, children that are very sensitive have powerful emotions that they often repress before expressing them.
Of course, parents often feel bad for not stopping the tantrum. Our sentiments of inadequacy and unworthiness are fueled by the abundance of “perfect” family photos, meditation apps, and fidget toys (which are used to control explosive youngsters) in the parenting business.
Hence, if you feel like your brain is about to explode, stop for a moment and ask yourself, “Does my child truly have a miserable life?” Most likely not, right?
Remembering that your youngster is capable of handling a “no” sometimes can assist. Also, protecting things at the expense of your emotional health is harmful. Be there for your kid instead while they deal with unwanted emotions.
For instance, picture yourself at a playground and your child approaches you and says, “I want to go. They don’t want to play with me, those youngsters. Parents with HSP children may respond, “Aww, let me go and speak to them.” Yet, you would convey to your youngster that they are incapable of handling bad feelings and shouldn’t.
It’s preferable to move on and ask, “May I assist you with anything?” or “What would you want to do instead?” rather than dramatizing the situation by stating something like, “You really wanted to play with them,” which teaches children to accept the truth. By doing this, you empower them and stop attempting to save them, allowing you both to develop.
4. Lead the way by following your child’s cues.
Nobody like being told what to do, especially a young kid who is already very sensitive and easily hurt. Respecting this HSP feature and standing by your kid entails taking the initiative and paying attention to their signals.
For instance, you may meet their unstated desire for connection by playing a game like “Let’s see who goes to the upstairs restroom in fewer than five seconds!” instead of initiating a power battle over teeth-brushing.
Limits, stimulation, and schedules abound in our fast-paced culture, which may be overwhelming for a youngster who is particularly sensitive. Try to concentrate instead on the constraints and natural consequences as a matter of safety. This increases the likelihood that your youngster will comply when required to perform something they dislike.
5. Explain to your highly sensitive child that you need quiet time (and this will teach them they could benefit from some, too).
For every parent with HSP, quiet time is essential. Research has also shown that HSPs need extra time for themselves in order to increase their wellbeing. Hence, in addition to being the compassionate parent who sets boundaries, you also need to explain to your kid the benefits of your alone time and why you need it. Even if you accomplish nothing with your time, it still counts since it allows you some space to unwind and decompress.
You may say something like, “I adore being with you. I adore our closeness and quality time spent together. But guess what? I also adore being with myself. I have more energy to play with you after my quiet period.
Children have a difficult time comprehending why we need time to ourselves. Speaking out loud about our needs won’t do us any good here. Instead, make an effort to promote autonomous play from a young age so that you may sometimes take little pauses. Thankfully, research show that unstructured play is an excellent approach for youngsters to develop self-regulation abilities. Also, it’s crucial for highly sensitive individuals to retain a “play ethic”.
Greetings, HSP parents! Please let me know if you have any suggestions to add to the list above. How can you take care of your kid and find time to relax? Please leave a remark below.