Talking Points 7 Children, The inner child, Long standing anxiety and depression
Posted Oct 15 2009 10:04pm
Children and Mood Mapping
My question is I'm working with my children's primary class on an emotional healthprogramme. Could you suggest some ways that I could present the ideas inmood mapping to them, but in a format more suited to the 5-9 age group? Many thanks for your help! A
Hi A, Yes definitely, you can use Mood Mapping! - I have used it with children I find that you need to act out the moods for them - they may immediately understand the chart but if you can act the differentmoods for them, they pick up on them quickly. And are happy to join in.
Thenadd in some simple strategies - such as talking to someone they trust ormaking a plan.
As you know, kids tend to like to do things! And join inphysically if possible.
Children are naturally good at recognising different moods. If you start teaching them calm by whispering or playing "Sleeping tigers" they will often quieten down, becomecalm and sometimes even fall asleep!
They recognise active - running aroundthe playground and they do recognise fear - especially if you can findexamples that mean something to them - Again they also recognise misery andcan pick it up in someone else. They are often a lot more naturally empathicthan adults!
You sound as though you have an excellent programme - because children need to learn mood management early! Its no good waiting until they are in trouble later in life. Ibelieve that we should be teaching Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, ie reasoned thinking and NeuroLinguistic Programming, ie effective use of the imagination to children as part of theireducation for life. Mood Mapping is the same, it is learning to recognisemoods, nothing more!
Many thanks for your email - I hope this helps Best wishes Liz
Hi Liz, Thanks so much, that's really helpful! I'll get hold of the book when I can, to enable me to understand as much as possible. I'm a kinesiologist, so coming at it from that angle, but the more input I have the more I can pass on to the children. I absolutely agree with you that if we get them sorted now, they won't need to be dysfunctional adults later, it's so important!
The new Scottish Curriculum for Excellence have included emotional health as part of their core studies, which is so wonderful. Though I do wonder how the teachers are going to deliver that effectively, given how stressed and messed up most teachers are! But, it's a start.
Very best wishes,
Mood Mapping and the Inner Child
Question = Does mood mapping work if a person is not particularly good atanalysing themselves, and perhaps still very much in their inner child,through past abuse trauma? can mood mapping help to release trappedemotions in any ways?
Mood Mapping is about helping cope with the present. It is about raisingawareness of how you feel now. In one this is what matters, because if youfeel good and feel stronger in yourself you are better able to cope withwhat has happened in the past.
I am not in favour of too much digging around in past events, because Ibelieve our brain is best placed to sort this out and that we only have todeal with consciously when it gets too bad. We have been around for millionsof years and terrible things have happened to us. We need to be able to geton with our lives in the present and in the future. I believe Mood Mappinghelps that to happen.
Terrible things do happen, and it is easy to feel trapped by the past butthat by focussing too much on the past it is hard to move forward.Personally I have found that making the effort to forgive people is helpful.
Regardless of how personal events feel to each of us, for the most part other people are driven by their own motives and have things going on their own lives that we cannot begin to understand. Most people, howeverhorrible and nasty they appear, and however personal their attack seems, just do not understand the damage they are doingto the people around them.
Bullies can rarely see what they are doing wrong.Even convicted paedophiles do not think they have done anything wrong. Andfrom the "victims" perspective (I hate the word "victim" perhaps "bullee" is better), I believe the best way forward is to forgivethe bully because otherwise the bully can go on hurting their victim for years to come. If you can forgive that person, you gain strength from that act of forgiveness. Thisdoes not mean it is easy. Loving support from close relationships helps
andwe all still need to make sure we do our best to stop it happening again.Nurturing hurt makes the pain worse. It has to be left in the past, so themind and body can heal and move forward into the future.
Nurturing the inner child is important - we would all benefit from a littlemore play in our everyday lives. Everyone is so serious - no wonder we aremiserable and spend so much time surfing the Internet!
I hope this helps
Dear Dr Liz
your replies make good sense..and thank you. I use zpoint process to clear anything that troubles me...( another form of energy psychology , like EFT..but with no tapping and it really does work!)
it fits your criteria of not having to dig around in the past..or even enjoy being a victim..its a superb tool in fact...and might well compliment your approach..I am interested to look at your mood mapping though.
I also totally agree about work..I have often thought that people actually work far too many hours..and invariably many people hate their work too! Not a great combination for good mental/emotional health!
look forward to learning more and very good luck with your newsletter and website etc.
Longstanding Anxiety and Depression
Dear Liz ... I have just happenedupon your wonderful website . I have suffered anxiety/depression (manifestations feel more anxiety based) for 20 years now. I have had severalmajor depressive episodes and am currently battling one that has lasted 5 +years now !! For me the worst symptoms are crippling muscle tension in thescalp and neck and chronic exhaustion/ tiredness.
I have taken severalcoursee of anti - depressent - venlafaxine, Seroxat,Citalopram, etc etc .. nothing has worked for me ..they just dont seem right either ! I haverecently just started meditation/tai chi type classes and alsopsycho-therapy - trying to throw the kitchen sink at it !! I feel so tiredand in so much pain most days that I struggle to make it along to theseclasses...
it just seems like a a never ending viscious circle... ie I tryand help myself .. am determined to help myself but soemetimes just pushingmyself can make me worse.. I know that yielding and acceptance are big partof recovery ... but anything else you can reccomend ? anyone I can go andtalk to ? any advice would be gratefully recieved. I, like you have found the medical fraternity to be on the whole pretty bloody useless .. especially Psychiatrists !! in my experience they seem to be pretty much the worst of the lot ..
Hi C, I am a great believer in fish oils and st John's wort. 2-3 gms of cod liveroil, from Boots or www.mind1st.co.uk or vegepa. Definitely keep on with the fishoils and multimineral multivitamins
In the long term good physical health helps good mental health and the firstand easiest thing to do, can be to start fish oils, very little effort, oncea day and over the following three or four weeks you wil feel the benefits.
Finding out the cause of your problems and managing it, is important. These things do not come out of the blue
Depression is largely exhaustion and all too often we have lost the abilityto relax - so yes, acceptance, forgiveness and gratitude are important!
You mention work, I think a significant amount of poor mental health starts out as bullying at work - and I don't think that psychiatry has much to offer in those situations because it treats mental illness as a personal failing of the individual
I am sure it is worth your while reading the book! because it does give lots of strategies to manage mental health
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