What are Positive Coping Strategies

What are Positive Coping Strategies

Positive coping strategies are the ways people deal with difficult circumstances. Some people may worry about exams while others are more worried by friendship problems.

There are different types of coping strategies and some are healthier than others. So it’s helpful to be familiar with a range of them.

Why is it important for young people to learn positive coping strategies?

Most young people will experience struggles at different times, whether it be friendship issues, study stress, concern for the future or simply feeling low.

Even if a young person seems to be doing well, learning tools to help them cope better will support them to ‘bounce back’ when difficult situations occur.

A toolkit of healthy strategies will be there when needed. These can help young people avoid short term strategies that may be harmful like using alcohol or other drugs.

What are some ways you can teach your child healthy coping strategies?

One of the best ways you can teach your child healthy coping strategies is to use and model positive strategies yourself.  It’s helpful to confide in your child about times in your own life where you struggled and found positive coping strategies helpful. This shows your teen that they are not alone and that you encourage help seeking behaviours.

Here are some examples of using positive coping tools for children and adults alike:

  • Speak to someone you trust about what you are going through. It’s important for parents not to force young people to tell them about their worries.  Instead let your child know that you are always there to listen and support them and that if they’d feel more comfortable talking to someone else, such as another family member or a counsellor, you are supportive and happy to organise that for them.
  • Encourage your child to take a break from what is causing them to feel worried. Having down time and taking it easy is a healthy way to refocus energy and positive thoughts.
  • Encourage activities that makes your child smile. This might be drawing, listening to music or taking a walk.
  • Help your child eat well to increase their energy levels, and in turn their motivation to try new things.
  • Look online for some relaxation strategies to use with your child.
  • Engage in positive, self-compassionate self-talk. Remind your child of their achievements, skills, strengths and share with them times when you overcame difficulties.

Seek the help you need

To find out more, visit Youth Network of Tasmania for a list of local services and online support.