RELAXING BATH: LETTING GO OF WORRIES WITH WORRY BUBBLES
Wash away your child’s worries with worry soap! This relaxation activity uses both the imagination and literal soap bubbles to visualize and affirm washing away the worries. Begin your relaxation practice with a soothing, warm bath. While in the bath, suggest to your child that it’s time to wash the worries of the day away. They will simply float out of your mind and down the drain with all the other soap bubbles. This is the perfect time to talk about any worries that might be lurking around inside the mind. Ask your child if they have a worry they would like to let go of. Invite them to wash it away by imagining it is going into the bubble. Use colored bath bombs, bath fizzies, colorful foam soap, or bath fingerpaints, (you can find any of these items on Amazon.com by searching “Kids colored bath bubbles”). Join your child in talking about a worry that you have and model letting that worry go by saying, “I am imagining my worry about not being able to go to sleep easily tonight inside this bubble. I am letting it go from my thoughts and I am putting it right here into this bubble. I watch that bubble pop and I know that worry isn’t bothering me anymore since I let it go now. I take a deep breath and I feel myself relax. Now you try it. What is a worry you want to let go of?”
If your child is having a hard time, simply continue to model. It may even take several baths for him/her to catch on! Practice your patience and know that eventually, when the time is right, your child may be ready to practice along with you. Even if they only ever want to watch you do it, s/he is still learning by watching you.
GUIDED IMAGERY SCRIPT: WORRY SOAP
A more advanced level of practicing with the worry soap is to try out this guided imagery script with your child. Before bed is a wonderful time to release worries and to practice peaceful thoughts. The script is as follows:
Begin by taking a deep breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. (Pause) Good! Now take another one, more slowly this time: in through your nose, filling up your lungs like a balloon, and let it out slowly and as long as you can through your mouth. Wonderful!
Now check in with your body. Turn your attention inside and see if you might find where a worry would be. Maybe it is inside your thoughts in your head? Or maybe you are carrying a worry in your tummy? Just notice if there is anywhere a worry pops up. It’s okay if you don’t find one too. Is there a place where you are feeling stressed or tension? Notice that place. (Pause) Good job!
Imagine that you have your very own power washing tool of colored sparkly worry erasing bubble soap. What color is your worry soap? Maybe it is neon or glittery? Maybe it is a specific color? Just notice if you had worry soap what it would look like right now.
Now imagine that you have that giant bottle of pretty worry soap and you can squish it all over your hands, making lots of foamy, soft, squishy bubbles. Take those bubbles and begin to scrub those places where you found the worries. Scrub. Scrub. Scrub all the worries away. These are magical bubbles that immediately have the power to erase any worry they touch.
Allow these bubbles to flow and float to any place in your body that needs to be worry free. Wash away any worries that you have. Feel how peaceful these bubbles are. Light, relaxing, and peaceful. (Pause)
Now, finish up by imagining a stream of cool, calming water that calms you and makes you feel as if you can easily float, worry free, clean of worries for just right now, this minute. Feeling so peaceful, so relaxed, so calm. Rest here feeling that calmness and peace.
You can begin to wiggle your fingers and your toes, slowly bringing your attention back to the room. You can open your eyes when you are ready.
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