My Anxiety Plan

Parents and caregivers play an invaluable role in teaching children critical life skills beginning with the basics like brushing teeth and dressing, to more complex tasks such as making a sandwich or driving a car. Learning to live with anxiety is no different. As a parent or caregiver you are in a unique position to be able to help your child learn techniques to manage and cope with his/her anxiety. Although it is always advisable to seek professional help, especially in more severe cases, help is not always readily available. Even if you do decide to seek help in managing your child's anxiety, you can still play a key role in helping your child.

This section is designed for you to take the lead in helping your child create a toolkit of anxiety management tools. You can choose between using the My Anxiety Plan (MAP) templates for each anxiety disorder as seen below, or by creating a customized My Anxiety Plan (MAP), by selecting from the list of MAP tools. The information contained in MAP summaries, tools, and worksheets has been selected or modified from evidence-based sources to provide you with effective and scientifically backed resources. 

We recommend that you select and implement tools thoughtfully. Occasionally, tools get mis-used, with the tool becoming a subtle form of escape or avoidance from the experience of anxiety. For example, using breathing to stop a panic attack, or using a parent as an exposure coach, but the child starts to view the parent as a protector who can prevent a bad outcome. While deep breathing and parent as exposure coach are useful tools, when these tools become a safety net designed to help the child escape or avoid anxiety, those tools are being misused.