By Dr Paras
COVID-19 is an anxious and uncertain time and in the midst of the phenomenon, you might be wondering how this period of isolation and uncertainty will affect your child’s mental health. During this time of social distance, uncertainty and change, parents living through quarantines must keep their children intellectually stimulated for making them emotionally intelligent and keeping any mental health issues or behavioral disorder at bay while they’re stuck at home. Enable them with the ability to evoke positive emotions in their own lives – practicing “gratitude” – which changes the brain in a way that will orient children to feel more rewarded. Practicing gratitude not only teaches a child a lifelong quality to ignite positive emotions but also builds deeper bonds within the family unit.
Gratitude is imperative to strengthen the foundation, just like a tree to grow big starts with roots. In a world full of dilemmas, where kids are growing – teaching them gratitude will help them to see life from a positive framework, it will teach them to be happy and content with the current situations and find alternatives over “fear and complaining”. When children learn gratitude, their strengths are enhanced, like flexibility, cooperation, respect towards their own capacity as well as working with others in dynamic situations. Gratitude will teach your child to be mindful of self, others, situations, environment and relationship with others.
Gratitude in a time of pandemic
The attitude of “gratitude” can be a powerful tool for resilience in the face of COVID-19. As children navigate this quarantine and epidemic, gratitude will remind them how special, beautiful and fortunate their lives are, even under stressful or hazardous conditions and will help strive for a better tomorrow.
It’s a wonderful visual reminder for being thankful for what you have currently in life.Teach your to create his own gratitude wheel + hang it on the wall anywhere in full view. It is a visual exercise to create a picture of your actual current state. It will result in a beautiful reflection of your child’s heart, and a handcrafted piece that you can cherish forever. You know that your child needs to develop the attitude of gratitude that has slipped away and you want to manifest it in his life again. The Gratitude Wheel is fun and gives a visual reminder of where you are right at this moment, and provides a guide as to where you want to go.
9 steps to manifest from the Gratitude Wheel
The Wheel of Gratitude exercise is about manifesting a visualisation or picture. It’s a selfie of your current moment, not of your physical body but of your emotional body. The Gratitude Wheel is giving a visual of where you are right this moment, and provides a guide to where you want to go.
Step 1 – Area to Pitch: Select one area a week from the gratitude wheel, maybe your child’s bedroom or your kitchen or study room and ask your child to look at what he has received or achieved. The Idea is that, when your child is surrounded by the Gratitude Wheel, it will create a natural sense of purpose.
Step 2 – The purpose of your gratitude wheel is to activate the “Law of attraction” which will make your child a natural optimist.
Step 3- Print the “Gratitude Wheel” and within each section ask your child to jot all the things happening in his life, to become grateful for including the good, the bad and the ugly! Go section by section and use adjectives or ask him to describe how he feels about the things he has listed. Ask your child to take their time and become mindful. Ask them to analyse how much these listed things mean in their life, what impact they have, how they can help now and in the future. Go over the wheel and using the space around the circle, ask your child to list the things he wants to enhance, improve or add to each area. Dream hard here! Be bold and brave, ask your child: What is missing in your circle? What do you want to manifest?
Step 4 – Reasons to be grateful: Ask your child reasons of his own to be grateful. As a child practices this, the things he is grateful for will become more specific to his own life. He must think outside the box. It does not matter how long his brain takes to land on the things he is grateful for, only that he focuses on gratitude.
Step 5- Emotional statement or creative pitch: Ask your child to fuel some emotional “thanksgiving” statements in the wheel like – “I will do my best to get you”, “I will get you no matter what”, “Oh divine, thank you for all that I have now”, “Oh Divine, please give me strength to cope”, “Please give me strength to survive”. Ask your child to use his creativity, pitch a perfect incense and create a sacred place to offer the prayer and thanksgiving to the divine, keeping the wheel in mind of what you have right now and how you will offer him later through your effort. Phrases like – “I am sorry for not understanding”, “Thank you”, can be used.
Step 6- Check how your child is responding or feeling after a week of manifestation when he does step 4 and then tell your child to imbibe what he wants to do next.
Step 7- Ask your child to “visualise” what he wants to create. Note down the dream/thought in a piece of paper and fold it neatly. Put this folded piece of paper in the Dream Wheel and “energise” it (spin it gently with full awareness and mindfulness). While you spin the wheel, ‘visualise your dream, feel it and live it’. Close your eyes while you do so, take a deep breath and believe in the fulfilment of the dreams and experience the power of visualisation.
Step 8- Ask your child to take 10 deep breaths. Breathe in through the nose and breathe out from the mouth and come back to normal breathing – thank yourself and the universe for the wonderful life journey.
Step 9- Remember to circle the most important ones as and when needed. Ask your child to describe how his life would be with these additions. Now take action. What are you going to do now with this information? Gratitude is the fuel you need to take action and make change. Commit to changing your attitude to gratitude, over the next 21 days.
(The writer is a life-leadership coach and founder of Matrrix.)
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