Family Toolbox from our Psychologist

During this challenging time due to Covid-19, Laurianne Neidecker, psychologist, has shared useful parenting tips to support our children and lower their fear or anxiety.

The Fingers
This is great to help your child reconnect with her body, slow down and energize
1. Take a comfortable position, with your two feet on the floor and relax your entire body with a deep inhale and exhale
2. Hold the left thumb with the right hand (or the other side for left handed) and take a deep inhale and exhale
3. Then take the index finger and do the same
4. Hold the rest of the fingers and if you feel like doing the fingers of the other hand do them!

The Vase and the Stones
When your child worries about something (whether or not he knows the source of it) This exercise helps your child identify a problem symbolically and act on it
1. Invite your child to sit with you in a quiet place
2. He may close his eyes, (if this is comfortable for him)
3. Tell him that he is like a beautiful, original vase (wait a few seconds to let him visualize his vase)
4. Continue by saying that he was born with a unique, magnificent light shining through the vase (wait a few seconds)
5. And continue saying that he has grown and became taller, more mature. The light is always with him wherever he goes and continue to shine over the years (use your words as you continue)…
6. … But sometimes because of worries or fears or things like that, it is more difficult to see the light of his name because the worries are like pebbles or stones. They may dim the glow of his own light…
7. Invite him to check whether he sees something in the vase which could dampen the light in the present moment
8. Typically he will tell you that he sees one or a few stones. If there are multiple stones, ask him « which one would you like to take away from the vase first? »
9. In his imagination, as he is pulling the stone from the vase, invite him to describe the stone with details: « How is it ? » « What shape ? » « What color ? » « What texture if you feel it with your hand ? » « Does it have a name? » « Check whether it wants to tell you something? »
10. Then ask him to find a place where to put the stone away
11. After placing the stone in a place of his imagination, invite him to take a deep breath and ask him to check the vase: « How is the light in your vase now? Do you notice a difference? »
12. You may propose to follow the same steps with another stone.

Once the process is complete, ask how he feels in his body? Later he may come back to you and tell you more about the worry he felt

The Scale
Use the scale question to help your child evaluate her level of energy, motivation, or the intensity of an emotion….
1. On a scale from 0 to 10, where would you say you are? (It should be a spontaneous answer, she does not need to think over the question before answering)
2. Following her answer, you may ask her: « What do you need to get to the next number above or below? » (according to the topic)

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