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The Stress-Buster Workbook for Kids

The Stress-Buster Workbook for Kids

Product Summery

How Do I Know If I Need This Book?
You learn a lot of different things in school, and chances are you have a favorite subject, but one thing schools don’t have a ton of time to teach right now is stress management. Here’s the  thing: Even if you don’t feel super stressed right now, a book like this can help you learn to cope so that the next time you feel stressed, you’ll know what to do. The word cope is just another  way of saying that you can get through a tough time—and coping skills will help you to do just that! 
Every kid encounters some stress. It might be something at school, at home,in the news, or even on a team or during an extracurricular activity. The truth is, the obstacles that sometimes stress  us out can also help us learn to work through hard things. So it’s always a good time to have a book like this handy.

What Is Stress and How Do I Know If I Have It?
First things, first: Not all stress is bad. It’s true! There’s good stress, too,and that’s the kind of stress that helps kids rise to challenges, work through conflict, and overcome problems. But when  other kids (or your grown-ups!) say they feel stressed, they’re not usually talking about good stress. It helps to understand more about how people experience stress so that you can learn to  handle it.
These are the three kinds of stress you might encounter on any given day:
Good stress: This happens when you encounter a situation that might feel scary, but you feel confident in your ability to manage it. Good stress makes us stronger because we can look back at  the situation in the future and remember how we successfully got through it.
Tolerable stress: This kind of stress occurs when you encounter something that feels a little scarier or threatening, but you’re able to recognize that you’ve handled something like this before so  you can get through it. Tolerable stress reminds us that we can overcome challenges, even if it feels hard to do in the moment. It builds our confidence even more when we work through the stressor. 
Bad stress: This occurs when we’re in a threatening or scary situation that seems to keep going and going, and we don’t know how to deal with it. Kids tend to freeze up when they encounter this kind of stress. You might feel helpless in the moment, and that can affect your self-confidence. 
Let’s discuss some examples!

Good Stress
Let’s say you’re skateboarding down a hill and picking up a lot of speed when you notice a group of small children crossing your path at the bottom of the hill. You know they don’t see you  coming, and your brain signals you to do something to avoid colliding with them. You slow down your board by leaning back on the tail and make a safe turn to the left or right to stop before you  reach the children.

What happens during that encounter is that your brain shifts into survival mode. It signals different parts of your body to help you solve the problem, and you manage to avoid a collision. If you  feel your heart racing during an incident like this, that’s because your brain is telling your heart to pump more blood to your legs to slow that board down. It’s also signaling you to steady your  breathing and to use your vision to assess the situation. Brains know what to do when good stress occurs!

Tolerable Stress
Imagine that you take your younger sibling on a walk on a bright, sunny day. You decide to wander a little farther than usual because it’s so nice out and you’re enjoying the day. Suddenly a  storm rolls in. It begins to rain, so you turn around and head for home. No big deal. Then you notice very dark clouds in the sky. Before you know it, you hear thunder off in the distance. You feel  scared because you’re still pretty far from home, the rain is pouring down, and you’re worried about your sibling.
You probably feel more stressed in this example because this is a greater level of danger, but your brain knows what to do. You remember that you’ve been in situations like this before and that  you can handle it. You pick up the pace and challenge your sibling to a race so you can make it home faster. You feel your heart racing as it pumps blood to your legs, and you remind yourself  to take deep breaths as you run for home.

Bad Stress
What if, while you’re running for home in the previous scenario, you see lightning slicing through the dark clouds and hear thunder rumbling overhead? You would likely feel very afraid if that  happened, and you might not know what to do. Keep running? Head for cover? What if your sibling starts crying or starts panicking? How can you possibly help when you feel frozen with fear  too?
This is an example of bad stress, which is physically and emotionally exhausting. It can cause your brain to think about only negative or bad outcomes, and it can make it hard to make  decisions. This kind of stress can affect anyone, and it doesn’t have to be a super-scary event like getting caught in a dangerous storm. You might feel this way when you get into an argument  with a friend or when your schoolwork feels too hard. 
The good news is that you can learn to manage these hard feelings and learn to take control in stressful situations. That’s because all the previous descriptions of stress were examples of  situational stress. That means there is a specific event or issue that causes your brain to go into what is called “fight-or-flight” mode. Your brain does this because it is always working hard to  protect you, even when you’re feeling scared! On the next page, you’ll see what this fight-or-flight response involves.

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