March 8, 2013

Goodnight Thoughts

Awhile back, Big One was really struggling to fall asleep at night, so I made him a little book with ideas and words that encourage happy thoughts. Thoughts that are nice for him and that require some imaginative thinking. Thoughts that would entice him to focus on them, rather than on focusing on not-falling-asleep, which tends to make it worse.

This is not a fancy therapy technique - it was simply the way I got myself to fall asleep "happily" when I was a little girl. I can remember looking forward to these playful imaginative journeys, after I had said goodnight prayers.

The cards say things like...
toboggan  (imagine yourself swishing down the toboggan track)
my dream room (one of my favourite fantasies as a little girl)
ten wrapped presents
meeting my hero   
being famous
plan a great day 
a red it
a happy place filled with my favourite things
running on the beach
...and so on.

Do you have any goodnight strategies that work for your children? I'd love to hear about them. 

Till next time, sweet dreams. 

(Added later on 13 March 2013 - For those of you with little ones who can't sleep due to anxiety, a nice idea is to create the book together. Involve them in the process and draw some pictures of things that they like to do or places they like to go - anything that makes them happy.  This is a nice visual reminder of happy thoughts to look at and chat about at bedtime. Remember, they will need some extra help visualising the thought, so your words will help them to imagine it.  Hope this all makes sense.) 


Unknown said...

I think I need to make myself a set of these! This is a fantastic idea. I've always used the alphabet to go to sleep on those restless mind nights. I try to think of a person I've known with each letter til I drift off, it usually works before I get to Z.

Chels said...

Hi Georgia!! This is an excellent idea! Currently my kids don't have a problem falling asleep but they'll occasionally wake me early morning and say they had a bad dream and can't go back to sleep. They have wonderful imaginations so they'd enjoy a little book like this! Thanks so much! As always, I love your happy posts!

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