If your kiddo is like most at this time of year, the last thing they’ll want is to be outside.
Chances are, they’ll have their head buried deep in a phone …
Wasting hours on some games console …
Or just staring blankly at the TV for hours.
And while they might seem perfectly content doing this, so much time spent indoors -- particularly time in front of screens -- is one of the worst things for their mood.
I know, for most of us, January is dark and miserable.
The buzz of the holidays feels long gone.
And you’re probably not motivated to get outside much yourself.
Especially if it’s wet, windy and cold.
But spending time in the fresh air and nature can genuinely do wonders for your kiddo’s mental health.
Not to mention yours, too!
Our clients at MTC know this.
We speak with so many parents at this time of year who say they expected their HSCs to calm down a little after the holidays, and get back into their routine …
Only to find they’re having more meltdowns and bigger outbursts than back in December.
And the reason?
A lack of time outdoors.
More than that though, it’s a lack of planned family activities outdoors.
See, while January might bring routine with it, you’ll also find your kid(s) can revert back to what I call ‘numbing behavior.’
This is where they switch off from the world, and bury themselves in their screens.
And while they may be quiet and calm while in the moment, long-term, this only makes them even more sensitive.
Those meltdowns will get worse, and you’ll just have bigger battles the moment you bring them back into the real world.
That’s why having a winter routine is so important.
You need to plan family activities -- especially outdoor ones -- more diligently than ever.
Whether that’s taking a weekend away in nature …
Hiking a local trail …
Or even just taking them to the park for an hour.
Access to fresh air and sunshine (even if it’s cold and wet) does wonders for their confidence and control.
Not just that, but this is a great chance for them to blow off any extra steam.
I know this can come with its own challenges though.
And you might be thinking -
“But my kid hates wrapping up warm. They refuse to wear a coat, and all those layers set off their sensitivities.”
I hear you.
If this is the case, then you need to build their insights into awareness of cold signals.
It’s fine for them to be a little cold, but watch out for them visibly shivering.
Help them become aware of when it’s time to wrap up.
After a couple of run throughs like this, you’ll see how quickly they adapt.
It’s important too, to match the intensity of your activities to your kiddo’s mood.
Sometimes, you’ll want to be super active, and really wear them out. (In a fun way, obviously!)
Other times, simply taking a slow stroll and sitting on a bench with a few snacks for 20 minutes will be just what they need.
Ultimately though, all this comes down to the fact that HSCs need activity, and they need outdoor time.
Sitting them in front of the TV or letting them spend whole afternoons on their phone might feel like the easy option.
But this is NOT the best strategy for them long-term.
Just like the easy option is to convince yourself you can figure this all out on your own …
And the hard option is to admit you might benefit from some guidance, by booking a call with our team.
I know how tough it can be to take that first step and reach out to us.
That’s why every call we do with parents who are looking to join our program is a judgment-free zone.
We’ll talk to you about where your child is now …
What their biggest struggles are …
What your biggest struggles are …
Share some insights to help you out, like the advice in this post today …
And then we can speak about whether our coaching would be a good fit for you and your kiddo.
If it is … Awesome!
And if not, that’s fine too.
You’ll still walk away from that call with a plan of what to do next, and with hope that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
But that can only happen if you book your call with us here.
For families with high school age teens, book your call here.
I can’t wait to speak with you.