A Simple Childhood May Protect Against Mental Issues

November 20, 2016
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A study was conducted by Kim John Payne, the author of the book Simplicity Parenting whereby he simplified the lives of children with attention deficit disorder. Within just 4 months, 68% of the children went from being from clinically dysfunctional to clinically functional.

A 37% per cent increase in academic and cognitive aptitude was recognized in the children which is an outcome that is not seen with commonly prescribed drugs like Ritalin.

As a parent, this is a rather startling finding for me yet empowering at the same time. This holds us accountable to provide an environment in which our children can physically, emotionally and mentally, thrive.

Our kids are growing up in a fast-paced environment and our kids don’t really get to have the traditional childhood fun like we used to. Things are so much more sophisticated these days and parents find it hard to resist providing a little too much for their kids. By doing this, we are in fact creating an environment where mental health issues display itself.

Payne volunteered in refugee camps very early in his career, where children were dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. “Jumpy, nervous, and hyper-vigilant, wary of anything novel or new” were the words he used to describe them.

A long while later, Payne ran a private practice in England, where he saw that many affluent children were displaying those same behavioral tendencies as the children he’d seen living in those war zones.

Why?

Payne says that although the kids were physically safe, they were also mentally living in a war zone of some sort. “Modern day children are exposed to a constant flood of information which they can’t process or rationalize” says Payne “Privy to their parents’ fears, drives, ambitions, and the very fast pace of their lives, the children were busy trying to construct their own boundaries, their own level of safety in behaviours that weren’t ultimately helpful.”

It’s a natural instinct to want the best for your child and we want to give them the best start in lives. We enroll them in so many activities and bombard them with books, toys, and devices. Children become so overwhelmed with choice that they play superficially rather than becoming immersed deeply and lost in their wild imaginations.

So what does Payne recommend about Simplicity parenting? 

  1. Protecting Childhood

Just 2 hours a week of unstructured play will boost a child’s creativity to above-average levels.

  1. Parents Take Charge

Learn to say NO and recreate regular down time providing a sense of calm and solace in the otherwise chaotic worlds. 

  1. Balance

By providing our children with a sense of balance and actively protecting their childhood, we’re giving them the greatest gift they’ll ever receive.

One Comment

  1. kieth

    November 29, 2016 at 3:57 am

    Hi

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