What’s your battery life? Talking to kids about emotional health

I recently started reading about the electric health of humans, and it’s been a game changer for me. I found it first by following @carriebwellness on Instagram. She describes that every atom in our body is made up of protons and electrons and ideally we would have a slightly negative charge in our atoms. There’s way more science to this, more than I can explain, so I encourage you to follow her page to learn more. To aid in this, in “gathering electrons,” we can go out into nature, be in the sun, watch the sunrise, ground to nature with our bare skin, and more. It’s not just that this stuff kind of feels good. It’s that it provides energy to us. It revitalizes us at a molecular level. I’ll just say it fits with a lot of what I’ve read about health and experienced first hand.

I started talking to my kids about it, and they understood it readily. I told them that we wanted our electrons versus protons to be “about here,” as I held two hands out and showed one slightly higher than the other. My daughter now goes out nearly every night on the grass and invites me to come join her. My oldest son tries to expose his eyes to natural light in the morning before any artificial light. And my youngest, 5, but needed to hear that he could go on the grass barefoot, and he was all in.

She’s been following her mom’s health advice.

Well now enter this absolute fabulous book I’ve been reading, Electric Body, Electric Health by Eileen Day McKusick. I cannot recommend this book enough. I know it sounds a bit crazy–why would electric fields have much to do with our health–and I’m here to tell you: everything. McKusick argues that pulsating energy in us, that thing that makes us feel alive, is electricity itself. (Please forgive me if I get anything about this science wrong. Please, read the books directly for yourself!) We are, she says, battery packs. Whether we have a low battery or a high battery level affects how much energy we have to go do things. If we manage this, we don’t have to hyper manager diet, exercise, or anything else. You rather naturally do what’s good for you and you rather naturally have health. She contends, as I already have found, that managing your emotions and mindset is more important than behavior-based solutions. Blast through those mental limitations! Don’t get mired in whatever diagnosis given to you! Revitalize yourself at a molecular level! Just in reading her book, I improved in a single day. I had more of that electric glow that a strong battery will give you. I am beyond excited about this.

So, I talked to my kids about it. I started to describe to my daughter that we have electricity running from cell to cell in our bodies and that we are like batteries. She instantly got it. She instantly said, “Sometimes I’m at 1%!” I was stunned. She instantly got the connection between this idea that we are “batteries” and then measuring it. Of course we talked about why she would be a 1%. I asked her where she was right then and there. She said about 62%. However, she wanted to be at 62% because 100% would be “hyper” and that’s “way too much.” Great. We know where she likes her zen. And now I get to check in on her every now and then with this simple question, “What’s your battery life now?”

This is an incredible way to check in on your child’s emotional health. That sense of wellness within is so important. And here is a concrete way you can do it with your children.

Related: Talking to children about homeostasis

Amber, aka “The Observant Mom,” documents the age-related stages children go through. She is all in on getting out into nature and keeping children in a state of homeostasis. Her book series is Misbehavior is Growth. Books are out for toddlers, threes, and fours. Send your friends and family to The Observant Mom.

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