HEALTHY LIFESTYLE TIPS FOR CHILDREN

These are some quick tips for a child’s healthy development in three aspects: 

 
Nutrition 

  • Fruits and vegetables are essential foods that provide the necessary nutrients for development and proper functioning of the body 
  • Staying hydrated helps the blood circulate, keeps joints lubricated and helps maintain an ideal body weight  
  • Children must avoid soft drinks or any other beverage that contains caffeine as these may stunt their growth due to the sleepless effect caffeine has 

Activities 

  • Engage the child in sports as this not only helps develop and strengthen their body, but also other important life skills 
  • Outdoor activities ensure the child gets good exercise that will strengthen their physique 

Lifestyle 

  • Taking vitamin supplements will aid their body in its metabolic processes 
  • Rest and proper sleep are important in their growth  
  • Following a daily routine helps them to stay active and productive 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Tips to Improve Focus in Kids with ADH

Thinking of concentration as a skill that can be built up over time is a growth-focused approach to helping your child manage their ADHD. 

Stay positive, patient, and don’t give up. Your child looks to you to set the tone for any challenge they face. Be a model for them and implement some of these tips to start building focus: 

🔶 Break into Small Chunks 

Facing a huge task can seem insurmountable when you look at it all at once – especially for children with ADHD. Break big tasks into bite-sized jobs. Put all the focus on the smaller tasks, and when each is completed, take a break before diving into the next one. 

🔶 Practice Deep Breathing 

Research has shown that a group of nerves in the brain that regulate breathing are connected to the brain’s arousal center. When you keep your breath calm and slow, your brain is signaled to keep at an even keel, as well. Taking deep breaths can help calm them, reduce anxiety, and re-center their attention. For best results, practice when they’re calm so they get the hang of the technique. 

🔶 Encourage Breaks 

Concentrating is naturally harder for kids than adults. That’s why it’s important to let them take breaks between focus sessions – especially if your child has ADHD. Encourage them to get up, move around, and play during breaks so they can sit down again later feeling refreshed, revived and ready to be attentive and focused. 

🔶 Make Time for Play 

Exercising causes stress hormones to drop, encourages the growth of brain cells, and creates new connections between them. On top of that, studies have shown that exercise encourages the growth of brain cells in the region called the hippocampus, which is responsible for memory and learning. 

However, while exercise is a big deal, team sports aren’t the only way to get your child moving. Children may also get their daily exercise through unstructured play – so let them loose in the backyard or on the playground, too. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Ways to be a More Present Parent

Stress often makes us a bit detached in our day-to-day routine. However, kids learn a lot more from our actions than they do from our words, so always being somewhere else mentally is almost as bad as being somewhere else physically. 

Here are some things that help me be present with my children: 

1. Wake up before your kids. 

That quiet time to center yourself before the day begins works wonders. If it’s not always possible, plan a time during the day, even if it’s 15 minutes, when you can be alone: Maybe during a nap time, quiet time, while your kids are at school, or when your husband is home. 

Instead of using that time to frantically get something done, choose something slow, relaxing, and that you enjoy. 

2. Exercise as often as you can. 

Yoga is one of the best exercises to try because it effectively can bring peace and mindfulness.  

3. Put the kids to bed early. 

Establish an early bedtime, or at least lights-out time. Creating a peaceful end to your days will help break them up instead of feeling like you’re in a never-ending cycle of need-meeting. 

Also, take advantage of bedtime time to talk to your children and ask them about their day. This ritual creates an easy opportunity for children to open about what’s on their mind. 

4. Put your phone away. 

Technology has an uncanny ability to suck us into its world and detach us from the people who are around us. Log less minutes on your devices and more moments with the people you love. 

5. Remember how fleeting childhood is. 

You won’t always be this needed or wanted by your children. When you look back on how you spent these years, you will never regret spending more time with your children. Time spent with family is always a positive investment. 

6. Have daily one-on-one time. 

Make a goal to spend five minutes of uninterrupted one-on-one time with each child every day. It’s amazing how much this simple commitment does for children’s happiness, behavior, and relationships. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Why You Should Let Children Be Bored 

Is your kid whining “I’m bored” on repeat? No parent wants kids to sit around bored for hours, so what’s the right way to handle the situation? Children need to sit in their own boredom for the world to become quite enough that they can hear themselves. 

Here’s why boredom is essential for kids: 

🌟 Boredom sparks creativity 

Boredom gives your child time and reason to be creative and come up with their own ideas. When your child has self-led free time, they get a chance to use their imagination. You may be amazed at what they come up with. 

🌟 Boredom fosters an appreciation for excitement 

A bit of boredom is like a rainy day in the middle of summer. It’s a downer when it happens, but it makes us really appreciate the sunny days that follow. 

🌟 Boredom enhances problem-solving skills 

Being forced to come up with their own entertainment may lead to daydreaming, which will ultimately develop your child’s ability to problem solve.  

🌟 Boredom can bring you closer together 

Try being bored with your child. Put down the phone and ask your child to think of something fun for you to do together. 

🌟 Boredom leads to self-discovery 

Given unstructured time to think freely — about whatever naturally comes to mind — will help your child learn who they truly are. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Taking Care of Yourself

Being a parent of a child with physical, emotional, or behavioral problems can be exhausting. When you haven’t taken any time for yourself, life can suddenly feel unmanageable. In order to give the best to your child and show your child how to care for themselves, you need to take care of yourself, too.  

It’s important for your child to see you as a human being who places health and wellness as a priority and has self-interests and hobbies. Your child will watch you and learn the importance of self-prioritization. Wellness and self-care practices like these can build a strong family value of caring for oneself – and one another. 

Here are a few common self-care ideas: 

  • Go to the doctor for your annual check-ups. 
  • Exercise regularly. 
  • Spend time alone or with friends. 
  • Do something you love away from your children/family. This can include reading a book at the park or taking a cooking class. 
  • If you have a spouse or partner, spend one-on-one time with him or her. 
  • Try to get as much sleep as possible. During late night waking and feedings, take turns with your partner, if possible. 
  • Practice meditation and/or mindfulness routines to calm and center yourself. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Normalize All Emotions 

One of the best things we can do to support children’s mental and emotional health is to ‘normalize’ emotions by talking about them. Our children absolutely deserve our support when dealing with big emotions. As adults we know that it’s not always appropriate to have our big feelings in public places, so reinforce your child’s emotions and set expectations for how to deal with those big feelings.  

Here are some positive ways to express and release emotions: 

  1. Reading – read books with your child and discuss how the characters handle emotion, diversity, and conflict. 
  1. Art – have your child draw, paint, collage, or sketch how he or she is feeling. 
  1. Writing – have your child start a journal and write down how he or she felt throughout the day. 
  1. Music – have your child pick a song that describes how he or she feels and turn the volume up. 
  1. Talk – create a safe space at home where your child can tell you exactly how he or she is feeling, ask questions, and help him or her feel in control by coming up with a plan. 
  1. Take a break – sometimes it’s best just to take a break and let your child’s mind calm down so you can have a thoughtful discussion when the time is right. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

How To Nurture Kindness

Children learn more from what they see us do than what they hear us say. Are we modelling positive and kind behavior? Cultivating children’s kindness will help develop their personality and set them up to be responsible adults in the future. 

Children need help managing their emotions and self-regulating to promote kindness toward themselves and towards others. Here are some of the most effective ways to begin to help kids understand kindness: 
 
1. Consciously model kindness. Your child learns a great deal about morality simply by your behavior. If you want your child to be kind whenever you are together, consciously demonstrate kind behavior. We tend to do kind behaviors so naturally that our children may miss them, so deliberately tune them in. 
 
2. Expect and then demand kindness. Spell out loudly and clearly your expectation that others must be treated kindly. It sets a standard for your child’s expected conduct and lets her know in no uncertain terms what you value. 
 
3. Teach the meaning of kindness. Take time to define the virtue. One of the most important steps in teaching kindness is making sure kids know what kindness means, and it’s a step too often overlooked. 
 
4. Show what kindness looks like. You can do this activity with your child any time you are together in a place filled with people: a store, the airport, a mall, or the school grounds. Tell her that the object is to look for people who show kindness towards others. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

SIGNS OF DEPRESSION IN CHILDREN

Depression is a serious issue that exists among all ages and should be taken seriously no matter the context. Depression in children is easily brushed off as a phase of development or seen as superficial. However, if left to fester, this may lead to severe consequences in the development and wellbeing not only of the child, but also the immediate family. Observe for these signs of depression that may manifest: 

Persistent sadness  

Feelings are often short, and if the child seems to exhibit sadness that persists through long periods of time without warning, it may be a symptom of depression. 
 

More irritable than usual 

This is characterized by irritability towards people who try to interact with them, as they have a negative outlook towards people due to the nature of their illness. 

 
Loss of interest in usually fun activities 

People suffering from depression often lose motivation in living. This is like taking the light away from life, making everything dark and gloomy. This is perhaps one reason why they see no point in taking part in these activities, they see no motivation in it. 

 
Constantly feeling tired or disinterested 

When they are not motivated by anything, it will always feel like there is no point in everything they do, and thus the feeling of tiredness or fatigue. 

 
Trouble sleeping through the night 

Sleeping problems are common for people with depression.  Overthinking and negative feelings may be contributors to this symptom. 

 
Loss or change in appetite 

Depression makes a person lose interest in daily activities, or life in general. This also includes the need for sustaining oneself. 

If your child is manifesting several of these signs, it is time to seek professional help for their evaluation. You must be there for your children in times that they need you the most. They should not feel outcast from their own family, for the people who are the most difficult to love are those that need it the most. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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6 Ways to Show Faith in Your Child

What to Do When You Notice Your Child Is Struggling

Parents have a natural tendency to continuously help and protect their children. After all, you want the best for them. Letting your child struggle and even fail sometimes can be highly beneficial to his or her development. If parents approach child’s struggles mindfully, rather than reactively, they may notice that their children grow as a result of hardship rather than looking to for an emotional rescue. 

Here are some practical things you can do to make things better for your child in ways that build resilience and teach them that struggle is normal. 

1 | Stay present with your child instead of fixing, changing, or rescuing 

Instead of fixing, parents can be present, stay supportive, but not to take the problem on their own lap. Our children need to face their own problems of childhood, so they are equipped to face bigger challenges in adulthood. 

2) Allow your child to feel 

All emotions are ok, and all emotions are transient. So, there is no need to react or resist what we feel. The most natural way to process emotions is to allow ourselves to feel all our feelings until they pass. We can teach this to our children. 

3) Value and embrace struggle 

If we value struggle and see struggle as necessary and important, kids will more likely see challenges this way as well. All growth, learning and emotional development comes from struggle.  

4) Normalize setbacks, failures, discomfort as part of life 

It is normal for emotions to be continually coming and going not for us to always feel happy. When we normalize this pattern then there is no sense of something being wrong when we face a challenge, setback or discomfort. When we frame struggles and setbacks as normal; we are teaching a lot of resilience to our kids. 

5) Rather than fixing, encourage your child to problem-solve 

Kids want to be empowered and feel that they are capable. For many problems, like peer rejection, there is no simple solution but staying present and available and encouraging your child to solve it, is a great way for your child to build these muscles. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Teaching Kids Respect

Respect is one of the most important virtues a child can have. Teaching your child how to respect others will ensure they develop positive relationships with their family, friends and communities throughout their life. Respect can be taught in many ways, but ultimately, it’s about ensuring your children treat others the way they want to be treated. 

Below are some of the most important traits your child can gain from learning the virtue of respect. 

🌟 Tolerance 

Your child is bound to face conflict throughout their life. While they might not always agree or understand what’s being said or done, teaching them respect will ensure they do their best to address conflict in a productive way. Teaching your child respect will allow them to communicate in a way that is effective and will encourage them to take responsibility for their own mistakes, and better tolerate the mistakes of others. 

🌟 Listening 

Learning how to communicate effectively means knowing how to listen, and this can be taught by understanding the importance of respect. Show your child how to listen intently, not interrupt and take their turn in order to help them better engage conversationally with others. Listening to those around us is how we learn and grow. 

🌟 Open-minded 

Teaching your children respect ensures they will get to know a person before making a snap judgement. This behavior will help them throughout their entire life, and ensures they treat everyone with kindness. As well, for some children, diversity is a hard concept to understand. However, teaching children respect at an early age ensures they accept everyone for who they are. 

🌟 Good manners 

Teaching your child good manners might seem difficult, especially at a young age. Saying a simple “please” and “thank you” can go a long way/ and, with practice, these gestures can become natural to your child.  

For all children, learning respect takes time, but it’s never too early to start practicing this essential life skill. Ultimately, teaching your children respect will help them to create more positive relationships with their family and friends. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Teaching Kids About Emotional Regulation

Emotional regulation skills help children with ADHD tame meltdowns, outbursts, and other negative behaviors. Being able to identify and understand feelings are the first steps to regulating emotions, an ability that children will continue to develop throughout their lives.  

Emotional regulation helps kids develop independence, self-discipline, interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence. It also helps children understand the meaning of their relationships with others, build mental resilience and form their identities. 

Use these strategies to teach your child self-regulation techniques to maintain their mental and physical health: 

🔵 Accurately Label Feelings 

Effective emotional regulation hinges on emotional intelligence — the ability to be aware of, express, and manage our emotions on our own and in relationships. A healthy familiarity with emotion starts with a family open to all emotions. Emotional maturity develops over time; it’s normal for younger children to have a hard time with it. Read books, talk about emotion, and describe your own emotions to your child. 

🔵 Behavior Interventions 

Child-directed therapy, where kids learn to identify emotions first and build coping skills to meet what they experience, can be vital for anyone with ADHD. Parental involvement helps, as adults reinforce what their children may otherwise forget to work on. Child-focused therapy should offer direct guidance in forming practical new habits, as children learn to handle their own disruptive emotions. 

🔵 ADHD Medication 

ADHD is a medical disorder. This doesn’t mean that medication is the only tool to cope with it, but it does validate considering medication. ADHD medications are safe and effective when used appropriately. Despite common misperceptions, the correct medication should have benefits with no significant side effects. ADHD medications do not primarily address emotional reactivity, but they often help. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

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Develop Children’s Empathy Skills

It’s important for us to foster empathy skills in our children so that they can learn to care about other people’s viewpoints. The best way to teach your children empathy is for you to model empathy towards them. Be open to the range of emotions they express, and don’t try to shut them down. Some feelings may be more comfortable than others—for us and our children. But, if we can normalize our children’s emotions and teach them how to recognize and value their own emotions, they can learn to be more sensitive to others’ feelings. 

We can show our kids how important it is to ask questions and to listen carefully to someone’s answers in order to understand their situation better. Being empathic is recognizing that and trying to respond in a way that will be helpful or meaningful to another—something that kids, even from a young age, can do. 

Here are a few suggestions to encourage empathy in you and your child: 

🌷 Discuss a time someone knew how either of you were feeling without being told. How do you think they knew? Can you describe what they did or said? How did that make you feel? What are clues you can look for to understand how another person is feeling? 

🌷 When you’re watching a movie or TV show with your child, talk about how one of the characters might be feeling and how you would feel in that situation. 

🌷 If you’re taking time to talk with a friend about a challenging situation, explain to your child what you’re doing and why. You don’t have to share the details but do let your child know that you’re listening to your friend and trying to help. Or, if your child talks about a conversation with a friend, highlight ways in which they were showing empathy. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog