Worry Distraction Strategies for Kids

When working with kids with worries, controlled breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, grounding strategies, and cognitive-behavioral techniques are go-to strategies! But sometimes kids need strategies in their back pockets they can use to distract themselves from their worries in the moment until they can independently or with the support of an adult break down their worry thoughts. Help kids with worry using these distraction strategies for kids:

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.

Help Kids with Worry: Worry Distraction Strategies for Kids

Creative Writing

Giving kids a creative outlet is a great way to distract from their worries. They can write in a journal, write poetry, write songs, or whatever they choose. You could also encourage kids to wrote a story or a comic about themselves as superheroes that defeat their worries, personified as villains!

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.

Coloring

Coloring is calming in itself, but directed coloring can be a great calming strategy. Kids can do color by number, color. a mandala, or any type of directed coloring that takes their attention away from worries and redirects it to something productive and calming.

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.

Puzzles

Puzzles encourage students to engage in problem-solving thinking! They also take a lot of focus and can redirect focus away from worries. Kids can do traditional jigsaw puzzles, Rubik’s cubes, other kinesthetic puzzles, or logic puzzles like sudoku.

Exercise

Doing a quick 5-10 minute exercise routine can help kids take their thoughts away from worries. They can do cardio exercises, yoga, or calisthenics. To encourage kids to really think about what they’re doing, they can do a dice or card activity in which they roll a die and complete a specific exercise or draw a card that corresponds to a specific yoga pose. Having a specific exercise regimen that they enjoy is a great go to strategy as well because they can do it without a lot of extra prep or guidance.

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.

Singing

Singing is a great worry distraction strategy and also can serve as a calming strategy. Help kids identify songs they know all the words to and can then sing aloud or to themselves to redirect their thoughts away from their worries.

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.

Change of Scenery

Head outside (or inside!) to get a change of scenery. Moving out of a bedroom or classroom into a safe outdoor space can help kids change their thoughts and distract themselves from worries. If you’re at school, designate. a safe space where kids can go to change their scenery if they’re feeling worried. It might be right outside the classroom or under a tree that’s visible through the classroom window so the teacher can keep an eye on them (this requires a lot of pre-teaching and practice!).

Looking for more strategies to help kids with worry?

Download the Worry Workbook.

Read 11 Essential Skills for Kids Who Worry.

Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries.
Want to help kids with worry? Try these worry distraction strategies to help kids refocus their attention away from worries. Kids worry strategies, worry management strategies, help kids deal with worry, worry counseling activities, anxiety counseling activities for kids.

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