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How to help a child overcome his fears, in 5 steps

How to help a child overcome his fears, in 5 steps

June 17, 2024

Childhood is a potentially exciting stage, but it is also full of fears. At such an early age, children tend to adopt a type of reasoning called magical thinking, which makes them prone to invent entities that are behind the things that happen around them and do not understand at all. The uncertainty that this produces can make them feel intimidated in certain types of normal day-to-day situations.

In this article we will see several tips about how to help children overcome their most irrational fears , both in terms of the world around them and in their perceptions about themselves, and what we can do as parents and educators to trust their abilities in a reasonable and realistic way.

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What to do to help children overcome their fears

The advice you will find below must be adapted to the reality of each family and each child, since its effectiveness always depends on the context in which it lives and the characteristics of each of the children we are going to help. Both the material environment in which it has been growing, and the relational dynamics that have been established between children and their families , as well as the personality and self-concept (perception of oneself) of each infant, are very important elements to take into account.

That said, let's see the concrete advice about what is advisable for children to overcome their fears.

1. Open an honest communication channel with the minor

First of all, it is essential to create the conditions so that the child feels that he can express his fears freely and honestly, without feeling judged or judged or contribute to that we put a "label" derogatory . In Western societies, fears are often seen as weaknesses, and therefore tend to be hidden. But if we show interest in knowing about them to help overcome them, things change.

So, the main thing is, in the first place, to gain their trust and show good intentions from the beginning.

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2. Question directly by the root of fear

It is necessary not to be blunt and know what is the perception that the child has about what is scary. In this way we will know how to establish certain forecasts about the type of situations in which this fear will be expressed, and on the other hand we will know if it is based on imaginary entities or if it has a minimally material basis . It is not the same not to dare to go to school because it is believed that on the way there lives a devil, to be afraid of getting lost in dark places.

3. Do not ridicule your fears

From the perspective of an adult, it is very easy to assume that the irrational fears of a boy or girl are nonsense, the fruit of a mind still in development. However, adopting that perspective is a serious mistake, since it will prevent us from connecting with the point of view of the person we want to help.

So, when you ask for information about what happens, act as you would a person who does not put the focus of the question on the logical or reasonable fear, but on the importance that the emotional repercussions of that fear have for the small. The important thing is not to analyze critically and rationally the chain of thoughts that sustain fear , but how to get rid of that fear.

4. Be an example

This is a way to start breaking fear. Demonstrating that it is possible to live quietly acting as if the source of that fear did not exist, we show that there are no reasons to remain aware of that concern. For this, he performs acts that the boy or girl would not dare to perform, in a company. But nevertheless, it is preferable not to force the minor to be present , because the fact of being forced or forced to do so is in itself another source of stress.

5. Create easy situations in which to break with fear

Following a curve of ascending difficulty, create situations in which there is a pinch of that fear that the child must overcome, and do everything possible to pass through them without backing down to avoid this discomfort. Leaving your comfort zone in that way will be rewarding, because it will show you that your world of possible actions is wider than that fear made you see at first. Slowly, challenge after challenge, it will be easier to keep progressing until the fear practically does not exist. However, always try to be close so that the situation does not get out of control.

5 Tricks for Overcoming Fear (June 2024).

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