Your child's imagination is a powerful place to reduce his stress. Our expert parenting author, Dr. Charlotte Reznick, is sharing how to help your child find his own special place where joy and success exist. This excerpt is from her book, The Power of Your Child's Imagination. Read this exercise to your child each night. Then notice the difference. Let's find out how it works.
Tool 2. Discovering Your Special Place
There are private places within your child's inner world where he can work out problems or take mini-vacations from the stresses of life, where he can relax, regroup, or just hang out in a healthy way.
Use the following script to guide your child toward whatever Special Place he would like to create. He might find himself in a garden, a castle, a cave, or outer space.
One child discovered "a room that can turn into anything;" another made frequent visits to the "Land of Far." It doesn't matter where yours goes or what he creates, as long as he feels protected. Once he finds safety inside, he is more likely to feel it outside, and he'll be more adaptable to challenges and change.
To introduce this Tool, say, "Let's take some time to find a place to relax." Or "Let's take a little vacation." Or simply present it as a game. Start with the Balloon Breath, then use this script to invite your child into a gentle inner journey. Combining the Balloon Breath and a Special Place is an excellent start for most situations.
Discovering Your Special Place
"Imagine yourself walking on a beautiful path. You might hear the sweet song of birds in the distance, feel soft grass under your feet, or brush past fragrant flowers along the way.
"In front of you is a carved wooden door with all your favorite colors. It has your name on it. Open it and step through. Good.
"Notice if you're indoors or out. You might be in a cozy room, a large, open meadow with trees and flowers, or somewhere else wonderful. You decide.
"This is your Special Place, where you can feel good about yourself. You deserve a peaceful place of your own. Here you are safe. You can play, study, rest, talk with whomever you wish, or do absolutely nothing.
"Surround yourself with everything and everyone that brings you joy. Invite people or animals you'd like to be with you. Whenever anyone walks through the door, they love and accept you just the way you are.
"If you've decided to be on your own, you can enjoy that, too. Let your imagination have a grand time. All this is for you. Remember who you really are: unique and important to this planet."
(Note: Close this imagery here or continue onto another Tool. To end now, say: "When you're ready, come back here feeling refreshed and open your eyes."
To end at bedtime, say: "Now breathe deeply and allow yourself to fall asleep naturally.") (This excerpt is from pages 25-26.)
Children have wonderful imaginations. According to Dr. Reznick, they often go to "Flights of Fancy." She is teaching parents how to develop this gift in ways to help your children reduce stress and anxiety. Pick up her excellent book full of useful tools, The Power of Your Child's Imagination: How to Transform Stress and Anxiety into Joy and Success.
Available at Amazon.com
Let's HONOR Dr. Charlotte Reznick for writing a book that helps us, who are parents, teach our children find joy and success through the power of their imaginations.
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