News of an impending war, terrorism alerts, and the economy has created an enormous amount of stress for many adults and this stress greatly affects our children. When we are fearful, are children are fearful. When we are stressed, our children are stressed. So what steps can we take to help ourselves and our children let go of stress and fear?

• Make time to de-stress yourself: One of the most powerful ways to distress yourself is waking up half hour before your kids and spending that time in meditation or prayer. Journaling is also another wonderful tool to help release stress. Finally, spend some time nurturing yourself by taking a warm bath with lavender oil and kosher salt, give yourself a massage, exercise, or go for a walk.

• Turn off the news: As negative as the news is for adults it is even more fear evoking for a child. If you choose to teach your children about world events do so by reading the headlines on the internet or in newspaper together.

• Teach children to meditate: Children are perfect candidates for meditation because they have such vivid imaginations. A simple way to begin is to have your child find a quiet spot where they won’t be disturbed. Have them close your eyes and ask them to take a deep breath in through their nose and feel the breath travel down into their belly. Have them hold the breath for several seconds and exhale through their mouth. Repeat this 3 times. This type of breathing is very effective to use whenever you or your children are having a stressful moment. Then simply have them think about playing at the beach or in a park.

• Pray together: Teaching children that there is a force beyond themselves that they can turn to when they are stressed or fearful is extremely powerful. Teach your children to call upon whatever spiritual force your family believes in.

• Laugh: Laughter is one of the most powerful tools for reducing stress and fear. Read joke books, have a silly face contest, watch a funny movie, find humor in every situation, learn to laugh at yourself and teach your children to laugh at themselves also.

• Spend time with your children outside in nature: Nature has a wonderfully calming effect on the body, mind, and spirit. Take time when you or your children are stressed or fearful to visit the beach, a park, or the mountains.

• Listen to beautiful music together: New Age, Classical, Jazz, or Nature Sounds helps to quiet down fearful and stressful thoughts in both adults and children.

• Spend time talking about their fears: Sometimes children just need to express what is on their mind. Work together to seek solutions for overcoming fear.

• If your children’s fear or stress level is limiting them from enjoying life seek professional help: There are wonderful play therapists that can help children relax and let go of fear.

As parents and educators there are so many ways we can encourage our children to face their fears and overcome the stress. By empowering them with these strategies they can truly achieve their highest potential.

Author's Bio: 

Debbie Milam is a pediatric occupational therapist, health and wellness consultant and motivational speaker whose products and services offer simple solutions for overcoming life’s challenges. Her newest product The Miracle is You CD can guide your children on a magical journey of story, song and meditation. Visit her online at and discover the many ways you and your children can relax and reach your extraordinary potential.