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‘It’s a time for action’: Jay Shetty on how parents can manage despair after school shooting

“These are the mornings we get out of bed for our children,” the former monk said on TODAY.

As the world mourns the 19 children and two teachers who were killed in a shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, monk-turned-life coach Jay Shetty is sharing strategies on how to deal with despair. 

“If you’re feeling heartbroken or you’re feeling helpless, you need to stop judging yourself. You need to give yourself some space and kindness,” Shetty told TODAY’s Hoda Kotb on Wednesday. “But I also believe this isn’t a time for helplessness. It’s a time for action.”

“These are the mornings we get out of bed for our children,” he added.

Related: How to talk to children about shootings, at every age

“When you feel you’re a part of the solution, the problem starts to feel more manageable,” Shetty continued. “We have to become active in our schools and in our communities. Become active with other parents. If you feel you’re active you’re going to feel much more in control of an unsettling situation. Now is not the time to be a bystander.”

Shetty stressed the importance of moms and dads modeling calmness for their kid, even when we may be freaking out.

“It’s not fair for them to see this extreme vulnerability,” he explained. Instead, Shetty said adults should confide in other adults about their anxiety and fears. 

“The other practical thing you can do is take some time out for yourself, whether that’s a walk by yourself, whether that’s listening to something that brings you joy, you need to make that time to connect with yourself,” Shetty said.

Shetty also shared tips on how to talk to your kids about shootings. If you have younger children, Shetty said to keep reminding them that they are safe and protected.

“Give them a simple explanation, but don’t go into too many details,” he said. “For slightly older kids, you want to encourage questions. They already are processing this. They’re seeing things, they’re talking to their friends about it. You want to give them a safe space to ask questions.”

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