Some advice for kids during the weirdest time ever

Looking back, most adults won’t describe 2020 as a “great” year. And kids are more likely to describe it as “weird” or “a bummer,” unless they’ve always dreamed of spending months at home with their parents. No matter how it is described, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the world in 2020.

But, it’s your lucky day! That valuable advice you’ve been waiting for is here!

Have you ever heard someone say, “I just couldn’t look away?” It seems that none of us can look away lately. Whether it’s more confusing details about the COVID-19 pandemic or videos of protesting and looting, it’s hard to stop watching, listening, and thinking about the big changes in our world today.

Watching TV is one of many kids’ favorite pastimes, but it’s easy to watch way too much of it. If the TV is used as background sound filler in your house, you may notice that the same videos are shown over and over on the news. They usually show conflict and destruction, as opposed to peaceful marches or healthy people. If you watch too much, the news can really make the world seem like a sad, scary place. So here’s our advice: try to watch less TV, even if there’s not an adult bugging you about it. At the very least, take a break every once in a while to find a light, funny show.

Social media is the Ursula of media, even though there’s not a kid alive who believes it. But Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and TikTok battles are a waste of time and energy. It’s easy to get mad and be mean and disrespectful to a faceless person, whether you know them or not. When it comes to controversial subjects, think carefully before jumping into the fray. Do you think the recipients are willing to listen or change? If not, what’s the point?

Believe it or not, healthy eating, exercising, and getting enough sleep are not things parents dream up to make kids miserable. And these things are arguably more important that staying up on the latest news and social media activity. The reason these “healthy habits” have been drilled into your head for as long as you can remember is because they affect everything from your mood and energy to your hair, skin, bones, muscles, and brain function. So if you’ve regressed into a nocturnal schedule you share with your raccoon friends, try slowly moving that bedtime back to a more reasonable place. You won’t regret it. And while you’re at it, make sure you fit a veggie or two and a little fresh air into each day.

It may seem as though no one agrees about anything lately. It’s OK to have discussions and debates, but when you or anyone else begins to get angry, frustrated, or just sad, step away and remember what’s most important: your safety and your mental and physical health. Because even though you can’t control a chaotic world, you can control how you react to it.