How and Why to Savor Small Moments with Your Anxious Child

Birthdays, the first day of school and other big events in your anxious child’s life may get a lot of attention, but paying attention to life’s smaller moments can be just as rewarding. In fact, taking the time to notice and relish the small yet touching moments you share with your child comes with major benefits for you both.

Why Small Moments Matter

The official term for relishing those small moments with your anxious child is “relational savoring.” Not only does this help you and your child live more fully in the moment, but a study published in “Personal Relationships” found it also enhances both emotional well-being and life satisfaction.

Those small, tender moments are also important because:

  • They are the building blocks of relationships that create closeness and connection
  • They can re-energize you throughout the day
  • They can create fond, lasting memories for you and your children

How to Notice The Small Moments

For all the benefits of these small moments to come to fruition, you first have to notice they exist. In a world of over-packed schedules with dozens of things to do, this can be easier said than done. In that case, it’s imperative to slow down.

Keep scheduling reasonable, or even on the light side. Editing down your to-do list also helps, as does allowing extra time for daily tasks and activities.

When you remove some of the daily responsibilities and burdens from your life, you can actually take a moment to breathe. This lets you pay closer attention to what’s going on around you – and capture those small moments you may have otherwise missed. Once you alleviate the need to plunge through the day at 100 mph, you alleviate the stress that comes with the nonstop lifestyle. You’ll then have the time, energy and awareness to notice the magical moments.

Those moments can be something as small and sweet as the way your son colors outside the lines in the coloring book, or the way your daughter ties her shoes with uneven loops. It could be the clever grin you get when you ask if your child if they brushed their teeth, or the adorable way they say a certain word or phrase.

Reflecting on the small moments after they’ve happened can also be beneficial. Taking two minutes at the end of each day to think about the precious moments can awaken a sense of gratitude while paving the way for noticing more of those moments in the future.

How to Savor and Save Them

Letting the moment unfold and simply experiencing it is wonderful. But you can take it one step further by keeping a daily journal of those moments and encouraging your anxious child to do the same. Take note of what moments matter much to them, and encourage them to draw a picture or take a photo to capture those moments forever.

Taking the time to notice the small moments can have a big impact in many ways. In addition to helping you and your child bond more deeply, it can also bring more enjoyment and satisfaction to your day as well as your overall life.