Sometimes depression can feel like a dark, dreary, rainy day.
Deep pain and sadness, being numb, anger and irritability, and no motivation. Kids and teens that don’t want to go out to see their friends, have no energy and focus, and don’t even ask them to do their homework.
For parents and therapists, it can feel tough to support a child or teen that is going through a depressive episode. And for some kids and teens this isn’t anything new - for some it’s chronic.
I wanted to share an intervention about the magic of sunshine!
Now I’m not talking about sunshine boosting Vitamin D (although being from Minnesota and our cloudy winters that is definitely something to think about).
I’m talking about a Sunshine Box!
A Sunshine Box is something that you can create with clients during sessions, or you can coach them to create these on their own.
First things first - you need a box.
This can be any kind of container. You can decorate the box any way the client wants - collaging, painting, or choosing a pre-decorated box.
Next, you decide what will go into the box. The sky's the limit. The only criteria is that it needs to be something that brings sunshine on a cloudy day.
Some ideas could include:
Sunshine items are definitely tailored to the age of the client. AND they are used when the client needs a burst of sunshine and then put back in the box in a special place.
Then, take it home and decide where the box will live.
The wonderful thing is that these boxes can be added to, shifted, and new boxes created. Especially for older teens a sunshine box can be a great way to have all of their regulation gear in one place.
I'm Ann Meehan, an LPCC,