To be the best we can be

What does this mean? To be good at football, art, maths, history, English, to be slim, to be popular or to do well in exams? There's so much pressure! "I have to be good for mum and dad. I have to do well in class for the teacher. I have to score in the football match for the coach and so on. In a society where we talk about mental health awareness every day, are we forgetting that, by wanting our children to be good, to behave, to do well at school, we are not contributing towards them "to be the best they can be." Instead for them to be what we want them to be! Are we forgetting to ask; How do you feel about this? What would you do if you could choose? What makes you happy? Sometimes we just want to live their lives and spare them from making mistakes or go through hard times, and by doing this we become part of this society where everything is about numbers, charts and statistics. In the meantime children end up in jobs that they hate, get involve in gangs or just lose themselves altogether.

Yes it is about having boundaries, keeping them safe and teaching them the principles of what's right and wrong, but at the same time let them have a say, let them be part of their childhood time. After all, isn't "to be the best we can be" simply being a child, to have moods, play in the mud, ruin new shoes, create a creative piece that looks weird and still let them know that we are proud of their achievement, that we are there to support them even if they loose at football, because they tried their best and nothing else matters.

Let them be children in their "child world", where they're still trying to find themselves as children with their uniqueness, without any pressures from us, analysing and over analysing every moment. Wouldn't this be a more positive way of contributing for better mental health in children?

How can counselling help with situations/issues such as these?

1. By supplying an environment where children can be just that, "children". A space without pressure, a space where the client's agenda is what matters.

2. An environment were the reparative work takes place, repairing the "missing" childhood.

3. Through personal experience as a counsellor, we can also help the client through art therapy creating the "play" time, this enhances the working process and enables the client to express their feelings and emotions in safe environment.

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