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Children’s Mental Health Week, from 5-11 February 2024

Help to give a voice to children and young people (

Many of us feel enormous pressure to understand and analyse everything our children talk about, yet most of the time they just want us to listen.  Giving a child space to speak aloud when they are feeling intense feelings enables them to figure out for themselves if something is a threat and work out a response to it. 

Learning to recognise and name feelings can reduce the emotional response over time so your child will become less stressed by things that bother them. Children learn best from role modelling, so challenge yourself to name how you feel and what you might need in front of your children.

Less intense ways of talking with children

Walk and talk

Take a drive


Kick about


Doing a puzzle

Kite flying


 Further reading:

  • Emotional Hijacking, 2009 by Marlene Schneider Potter

  • Lieberman MD, Eisenberger NI, Crockett MJ, Tom SM, Pfeifer JH, Way BM. Putting feelings into words: affect labeling disrupts amygdala activity in response to affective stimuli. Psychol Sci. 2007 May;18(5):421-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2007.01916.x. PMID: 17576282.

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