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Sunday, March 21, 2021

5 Ways To Help Children Manage Their Frustration

As parents, its really hard when our kids are upset and we don't know how to help them. This post sent in from a reader gives some good suggestions as to how to help your children when they are frustrated. I hope you find it helpful!


Teaching and mentoring children can be a rewarding yet challenging experience. Children today encounter more obstacles and frustrations in life than kids typically might have in past decades. By providing resources and practical tips to help children build coping skills and learn to manage frustration, you are better able to help each child achieve his or her full potential and live a healthy, happy and productive life. Consider the following five, practical tips as a helpful guideline when attempting to help a child find constructive and safe ways to manage his or her frustration:

Recognize each child's uniqueness as a basis of support

Learning to manage frustration in a productive way is a process that involves a lot of trial and error. No two children are exactly the same; you must recognize that a system of frustration management that works well for one child may not be effective for another.

Adapt coping skills to fit child's age, circumstances and personality

As programs such as Big Life Journal and studies from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center recommend, in order to help a child discover a best course of action to manage frustration, it's important to keep in mind the child's age, as well as what type of situation is causing his or her frustration and what the main characteristics of his or her personality happen to be.

Determine what triggers a child's frustration

Especially when you're providing care and instruction to a group of children, you'll no doubt notice that each child has different trigger issues that cause frustration to flare. For one child, it might be that he or she doesn't do well when sudden, unexpected changes occur. Feeling misunderstood or like someone isn't listening may be a frustration trigger for another child. Once you determine a trigger, you can then recommend ways to manage the frustration. An activity that is helpful regarding numerous types of triggers is physical exercise. A child can learn to take a brisk walk, kick a soccer ball around or do some jumping jacks when he or she feels frustrated.

Teach children to use constructive activities to process frustration

Frustration often causes anxiety levels to rise. Deep breathing exercises can help a child calm down and settle his or her mind. Many children respond positively to being placed in charge of a task or being given a certain responsibility. Such activity provides a distraction from whatever issue is causing frustration at the time. Listening to music or making music with an instrument is another constructive behavior that can diffuse feelings of frustration. You may have a child in your classroom or at home who benefits from writing his or her thoughts in a journal whenever he or she feels frustrated.

Help a frustrated child build a circle of control

Building a circle of control for kids teaches valuable lessons about dealing with frustration in a safe, healthy manner. Everyone experiences disappointments, losses and stressful situations in life. Kids can use charts and graphic aids to remind them how to problem-solve and channel their energy into finding a solution to a specific problem or learning to recognize when circumstances are beyond their control and how to process their emotions and move on in life without allowing frustration to impede their progress.

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