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Anxiety and the Gift of Imagination: A New Model for Helping Parents and Children Manage Anxiety Paperback – Dec 1 2011


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Anxiety and the Gift of Imagination: A New Model for Helping Parents and Children Manage Anxiety + What to Do When You Worry Too Much: A Kid's Guide to Overcoming Anxiety
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 156 pages
  • Publisher: Createspace (Dec 1 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1466432063
  • ISBN-13: 978-1466432062
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 0.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 635 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #103,433 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Book Description

More children are now suffering from debilitating symptoms of anxiety than ever before. What can a parent do when constant worry and fear rob a child of the ability to enjoy life? In this book, Dr. Robin Alter offers an answer. Dr. Alter is a clinical psychologist with over thirty years experience helping troubled children, both in her own private practice and also as a consulting psychologist at a large children’s mental health centre in Toronto. Here Dr. Alter shares the approach that has been successful with so many of her clients. She explains how a runaway imagination can trigger needless anxiety, and she offers practical tools and strategies for regaining control and avoiding years of distress. With two chapters written especially for children, this book will help you and your child to understand the imagination, to respect its power, and finally to achieve a more peaceful alliance with it.

About the Author

Dr. Robin Alter is a registered clinical psychologist with over 30 years of experience helping troubled children in the Toronto area. She has taught at York University and is a trustee with the Psychology Foundation. She is a member of the American Psychology, Canadian Psychology and the Ontario Psychology Associations. She has published and traveled widely, giving lectures on topics pertaining to childrens' mental health.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Child & Family Therapist, Toronto, Ontario on May 1 2012
Format: Paperback
I was pleased to discover just how much I LOVE this book. I think it was definitely time that someone put together a book connecting anxiety and the imagination in this way. I immediately started using some of the concepts and tools in this book with my clients, and it has really helped me to connect with my young clients about their anxiety in new engaging ways, and I have seen significant progress with some of my clients within a short period of time. Many of my anxious clients are now celebrating their imaginations in new ways, and using the very force that contributes to their anxiety to begin to guide it in positive directions. I love many of the metaphors in this book that make it easy for children to relate to the concept of learning to guide one's imagination (i.e. the metaphor about learning to ride a bike). Of course it goes without saying that the section on skills & strategies is an invaluable resource. It contains many strategies similar to those I have already been using with children, but includes an abundance of others, as well as new creative spins on those tried and true skills and strategies. I love the emphasis placed on encouraging children to create their own strategies, which I have seen really helps children to own, and be motivated and invested to use, these strategies, as well as the additional benefit of children's increased confidence after providing such invaluable contributions to their own progress.

This book is for everyone! Therapists, parents... it even has a section specifically for children. To top it all off it is a pleasant and easy read. Dr. Alter has done an amazing job of including the necessary information to understand anxiety and its connection to the imagination, while using language and flow that allow for comprehension by almost any reader.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A child and family therapist on March 8 2012
Format: Paperback
Dr. Alter's new book presents a positive reframing of the concept of anxiety in children that is at once a parent-friendly guide and a very helpful tool for clinicians in their work with families. By connecting anxiety with imagination, which she defines as a "gift" that children can harness to their benefit, she has developed an empowering, child-centered model for children and families with which to approach the otherwise very overwhelming presence of anxiety in their lives. By drawing on more classic cognitive-behavioural and solution-focused models and linking these to creative concepts that kids can really relate to, Dr. Alter has created a very accessible toolbox of strategies upon which to draw when helping children with anxiety. Her concepts allow children to celebrate and build on their imagination, while also feeling that they have some control over the thoughts that come into their minds. As a therapist, I have already implemented approaches from this book with my clients, and as a parent it has helped inform the way I speak to my children at home.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TMB on March 10 2012
Format: Paperback
Although I don't work with children under 13 yrs. I read Dr. Alter's book because I work with a lot of teens with anxiety and my daughter experiences anxiety. As a therapist, I really appreciated her positive reframing of the common problem of anxiety. I particularly liked that Dr. Alter's writing style is clear and free of jargon, making it accessible to parents and children. She even includes a couple chapters specifically written for the child to read and the book is full of fun pictures that will grab their attention. Finally, it is a quick read despite the fact that she has provided a fairly comprehensive description of the various techniques that have been shown to be effective in working with children with anxiety.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By margaret on July 9 2012
Format: Paperback
Anxiety and the gift of imagination has been a very supportive book for me as I often discuss the creative mind behind anxiety. The book is easy to read and jargon free. It is colorful and appealing for children, youth and families. I have been recommending this book to all my new clients. There are several ideas about how to use metaphors to get across various ideas and to help children/youth to think up helpful metaphors for themselves. Anxiety truely can be overcome and the power and personal strength that comes from success, is a real joy. thank-you, Robin, for this lovely, helpful addition to our field.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 9 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great book March 29 2012
By Kevin Shortt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
If you have a child whose anxiety prevents them from sleeping or living his/her life fully ~ then this book is for you. Dr. Alter's easy and conversational style clearly lays out dozens of different tools to teach children how to understand and control their imagination. Reading the book certainly had me thinking about my own anxiety and immediately I started implementing some of its techniques ~ such as choosing to change the channel of my mind when it gets locked on a certain worry. The book's comical illustrations and effective exercises will keep children engaged as they learn to lower their anxiety and enjoy their imagination.
Very helpful and insightful April 22 2014
By Darlene Cruz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is a good reference to keep handy when a parent need questions answered that concerns their children anxiety. How to manage it and how to face it. Children have vivid imaginations, a whole picture brightly plays in their mind like a movie but without the pause button. Overcoming their fear, write it down, put their fears away in a box. I enjoyed this book because not only did the author offer scenarios but how to face it with a resolution. A Safe Place, a place that makes the child feel secure and comfortable or keep a record of how fear wins and how often fun wins. I like this one when their imagination gets the best of them like a monster their afraid of, use your imagination to destroy the monster. Won this on Goodreads, First Read Giveaway, thank you, Darlene Cruz
Anxiety and the Gift of Imagination Oct. 15 2012
By Beaner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a great book! I wish that I had read it when my kids were little. I wish that my PARENTS had read it when I was little. It has taken me years to learn how to live with my active imagination. If I had had this information earlier I would have spent less time looking under my kid's beds for monsters. Highly readable, very practical. I have already recommended it to many friends and parents of young children.
Gift to children's mental health!!! May 7 2012
By Child & Family Therapist, Toronto, Ontario - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
May 1 2012 By Child & Family Therapist, Toronto, Ontario
I was pleased to discover just how much I LOVE this book. I think it was definitely time that someone put together a book connecting anxiety and the imagination in this way. I immediately started using some of the concepts and tools in this book with my clients, and it has really helped me to connect with my young clients about their anxiety in new engaging ways, and I have seen significant progress with some of my clients within a short period of time. Many of my anxious clients are now celebrating their imaginations in new ways, and using the very force that contributes to their anxiety to begin to guide it in positive directions. I love many of the metaphors in this book that make it easy for children to relate to the concept of learning to guide one's imagination (i.e. the metaphor about learning to ride a bike). Of course it goes without saying that the section on skills & strategies is an invaluable resource. It contains many strategies similar to those I have already been using with children, but includes an abundance of others, as well as new creative spins on those tried and true skills and strategies. I love the emphasis placed on encouraging children to create their own strategies, which I have seen really helps children to own, and be motivated and invested to use, these strategies, as well as the additional benefit of children's increased confidence after providing such invaluable contributions to their own progress.

This book is for everyone! Therapists, parents... it even has a section specifically for children. To top it all off it is a pleasant and easy read. Dr. Alter has done an amazing job of including the necessary information to understand anxiety and its connection to the imagination, while using language and flow that allow for comprehension by almost any reader. I devoured this book as if it were my favorite novel, and reference it regularly. Definitely money well spent!

In summary, this book has changed the way that I think and talk about anxiety, and I have seen significant improvements with the children I work with. Many of the parents I work with have also purchased this book, and I have had much positive feedback from them as well. I am yet to hear any less than positive feedback on this book.

Thank you, Dr. Alter for this amazing contribution to children's mental health!
Helpful for Anxious Adults, too March 26 2012
By K. Chiotti - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
As a psychotherapist who works only with adults I wanted to commend Dr. Alter for her excellent book. Not only is her format and message accessible, helpful and respectful to parents and their children who struggle with anxiety, but her theory and the tools she provides has a wider application for all adults who may, at times, be held captive by their imaginations. Dr. Alter has a calm and understanding manner that comes through in her writing. She makes the managing of a vivid imagination fun and de-stressing. I like the way that she empowers all who look to her for support. I have referred a number of my clients to this book already.


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