I should tell you that my wife does the majority of writing for this site. But when the GoZen! Program came in, I jumped on the opportunity to test it out. You see, I was (and still am a little bit) a BIG worrier as a child. My worry, stress, and anxiety caused me to miss out on lots of opportunities as a child, and I wanted to see if there was anything TRULY helpful in this program – in short, I was blown away!
GoZen! has a website that is easy to navigate and filled with a collection of characters and short videos to help children give a name to their feelings, and get some tools on how to manage their stress and worry. This is a resource that makes the internet a worthwhile entity. GoZen! understands that you can’t label and help kids using the same techniques you use for adults and they have crafted a program that is targeted to the socioemotional needs of children. This is such a wonderful resource and this definitely has the possibility to make a real difference for children affected by worry, as well as parents and caregivers who are struggling to help the children about whom they care so much.
The GoZen! program is structured as a series of modules with engaging characters that kids should be interested and engaged with – I know I was!
These teach real life coping skills and gives children the ability (with scientific explanations) as to why it’s okay to worry, but offers coping mechanisms and solutions to help a child with anxiety.
Another awesome part of the program is Widdle the Worrier. A plush doll, Widdle is something that kids can hold onto – a tactile representation and extension of the GoZen! program that can reassure your child when he or she can’t be with you at the computer. Widdle is in fact a worrier – but with a gentle squeeze of his abdomen he is ready to give your child some great coping advice. Phrases such as, “I know worry can seem scary, but it will pass. Remember, you’re not alone”, and, “I get how you feel. It’s okay, a little worry can even protect us” provide gentle reassurance to your child to aid them in self-soothing and implementing the coping and worry skills the GoZen! program teaches.
I really cannot say enough good things about this program. A stressed child is a frustrating situation for everyone involved – the child, the parents and caregivers, sibling, and teachers to name a few. The GoZen! site and Widdle the Worrier plush are a combination that are likely to aid your worrier with their thoughts and feelings, while empowering them with a new skill set to help them be more confident, independent, successful, and ultimately more happy.
Please, take the time to check out the GoZen! program. It could be the perfect thing for your child – I know it would have saved me years of worry and gallons of tears. Try GoZen!, then let me know how it worked. The program is fully supported by GoZen! staff and they will guide you through the process of setting up your access to the GoZen! site – they care about kids, and they help families. Try it, please.
Are your children worriers? What strategies do you use to help them cope?