Continuing with our blog series concerning meditation and children – including progressive relaxation and the importance of breath, seated meditation, and creative visualization – today’s blog post will focus on how to teach your young child creative visualization basics.

The beginning visualization basics for a young child are: 

  1. Before you can move into visualization, it is important to relax the mind and body. You can use the full-body Progressive Relaxation Exercise or you may want to try a more visual technique for creating a relaxed state.

Ask your child to imagine stepping on an escalator, breathing deeply, and riding down through a rainbow of rich, warm colors, with each floor making him feel warmer and more relaxed and happy. Start by seeing ultraviolet on the seventh floor; feel yourself riding down the next floor to see purple on the sixth, blue on the fifth, green on the fourth, yellow on the third, orange on the second and a bright, red on the first floor.

  1. Now ask your child to think of something that makes him happy, especially a favorite place where he feels really peaceful. It could be floating in a bath, or lying on the warm sand at the beach, or a special place in the backyard. If nothing comes to mind, bear in mind that it can be an imaginary place, too: up in a balloon, or on a raft in the ocean. You can help find the place by making up a story that takes your child on a journey through a meadow where he can feel the grass, hear a river dancing over the rocks, and so on.
  2. Once you both find a soothing spot, ask your child to describe it so you can help him evoke all the details clearly. The more clearly your child can see the spot, the better able he will be to go to that peaceful place again and instantly relax.

Ask questions to elicit these visual details. See the colors, feel the heat or the cool air. Listen to the sounds of the birds. Smell the grass. Hear the brook. Walk up the path to a mountain. Emphasize some positive association with each detail: how the cool air feels refreshing or the blue water makes you want to relax. Each element should make him feel calm, happy, relaxed and peaceful.

  1. The first time you do the relaxation exercises and find a peaceful place, it will take considerably longer. Once your child has done this part of the exercise several times, he will find that what took 20 minutes at first can now be compressed into five minutes or less.

In summary, finding a place that makes your child feel happy and relaxed, and being able to describe it clearly so that he can go there and experience the happiness and peace associated with that place, is the first step in using creative visualization to achieve his goals.

The next step is to learn how to set goals so that your child can achieve them, using visualization as a tool.


  • Dr. Gail Gross

    Author and Parenting, Relationships, and Human Behavior Expert

    Dr. Gail Gross, Ph.D., Ed.D., M.Ed., a member of the American Psychological Association (APA) and member of APA Division 39, is a nationally recognized family, child development, and human behavior expert, author, and educator. Her positive and integrative approach to difficult issues helps families navigate today’s complex problems. Dr. Gross is frequently called upon by national and regional media to offer her insight on topics involving family relationships, education, behavior, and development issues. A dependable authority, Dr. Gross has contributed to broadcast, print and online media including CNN, the Today Show, CNBC's The Doctors, Hollywood Reporter, FOX radio, FOX’s The O’Reilly Factor, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Times of India, People magazine, Parents magazine, Scholastic Parent and Child Magazine, USA Today, Univision, ABC, CBS, and KHOU's Great Day Houston Show. She is a veteran radio talk show host as well as the host of the nationally syndicated PBS program, “Let’s Talk.” Also, Dr. Gross has written a semi-weekly blog for The Huffington Post and has blogged at since 2013. Recently, Houston Women's Magazine named her One of Houston's Most Influential Women of 2016. Dr. Gross is a longtime leader in finding solutions to the nation’s toughest education challenges. She co-founded the first-of-its kind Cuney Home School with her husband Jenard, in partnership with Texas Southern University. The school serves as a national model for improving the academic performance of students from housing projects by engaging the parents. Dr. Gross also has a public school elementary and secondary campus in Texas that has been named for her. Additionally, she recently completed leading a landmark, year-long study in the Houston Independent School District to examine how stress-reduction affects academics, attendance, and bullying in elementary school students, and a second study on stress and its effects on learning. Such work has earned her accolades from distinguished leaders such as the Dalai Lama, who presented her with the first Spirit of Freedom award in 1998. More recently, she was honored in 2013 with the Jung Institute award. She also received the Good Heart Humanitarian Award from Jewish Women International, Perth Amboy High School Hall of Fame Award, the Great Texan of the Year Award, the Houston Best Dressed Hall of Fame Award, Trailblazer Award, Get Real New York City Convention's 2014 Blogging Award, and Woman of Influence Award. Dr. Gross’ book, The Only Way Out Is Through, is available on Amazon now and offers strategies for life’s transitions including coping with loss, drawing from dealing with the death of her own daughter. Her next book, How to Build Your Baby’s Brain, is also available on Amazon now and teaches parents how to enhance their child’s learning potential by understanding and recognizing their various development stages. And her first research book was published by Random House in 1987 on health and skin care titled Beautiful Skin. Dr. Gross has created 8 audio tapes on relaxation and stress reduction that can be purchased on Most recently, Dr. Gross’s book, The Only Way Out is Through, was named a Next Generation Indie Book Awards Silver Medal finalist in 2020 and Winner of the 2021 Independent Press Awards in the categories of Death & Dying as well as Grief. Her latest book, How to Build Your Baby’s Brain, was the National Parenting Product Awards winner in 2019, the Nautilus Book Awards winner in 2019, ranked the No. 1 Best New Parenting Book in 2019 and listed among the Top 10 Parenting Books to Read in 2020 by BookAuthority, as well as the Next Generation Indie Book Awards Gold Medal winner in 2020 and Winner of the 2021 Independent Press Awards in the category of How-To. Dr. Gross received a BS in Education and an Ed.D. (Doctorate of Education) with a specialty in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Houston. She earned her Master’s degree in Secondary Education with a focus on Psychology from the University of St. Thomas in Houston. Dr. Gross received her second PhD in Psychology, with a concentration in Jungian studies. Dr. Gross was the recipient of Kappa Delta Pi An International Honor Society in Education. Dr. Gross was elected member of the International English Honor Society Sigma Tau Delta.