Welcome to the second installment in our 3-part series on grounding and anxiety management with young children! In this series we are focusing on simple, fun, and helpful activities that you can teach anyone in your family, including young children, to help them cope with stressors and anxiety. For our second activity, we will be learning how to make a "Worry Box".
Create a fun, bonding experience with your child by teaching them how to cope and deal with worries and stressors in their life
- Create a Worry Box
- Work with your child to design and create a "worry box" together. This box can be decorated in any way that your child likes.
- The important part is that your child gets to decorate it how they want, as this is an important element of your child feeling seen and validated.
- Make sure your child knows this is their box and that it belongs to them, and only them.
- Write down "worries" or "problems"
- Is there anything that your child is worried about? Maybe they're worried about the future, or about that math test next week. What are the bad things that are on their mind that they don't want to focus on?
- Have your child write down these different worries-either as a list, or each one on it's own individual piece of paper.
- Put the "worries" in the "worry box"
- Have your child put all of the worries they wrote down into the worry box.
- This will be a safe place to keep them in, away from your child and their mind.
- Let your child decide what they want to do with the worry box:
- Do they want to burn it? Tape it all up? Crush it? Store it in a safe place?
- Ask your child if they want you to check in with them about their worries. Ask your child if it is ok if you check in on their worries from time to time.
- Make it clear that their worry box can be entirely private if they prefer that. (And stick to it!)
How do worry boxes relate to sexual assault?
- Worry boxes are a good way for your child to develop coping skills. This is true regardless of the situation your child is in. However, a worry box was also suggested in our recent webinar on sibling sexual assault as a good activity to help your child build good coping skills and worry mechanisms as you work to make the home a safer place