Renee's Latest Work

Widdle the Worrier Plush Toy

GoZen! Mindful Minute Cards

GoStrengths! Social & Emotional Learning Programs for K-12

GoZen! Anxiety Relief Programs For Kids & Parents

How Mindful Children React Differently to Challenges (Illustrated)

Growing up, I was a bit of a firecracker. I reacted quickly to situations and never hesitated to express my “passionate” opinions. This often led to hurt feelings. I remember once, after a heated discussion with my brother, he asked my parents to put a coffee filter over my mouth to “keep the yucky stuff inside.” My […]

5 Things Never to Say to an Anxious Child

I wanted to sleep with a bat under my pillow. It was plastic; nonetheless, it was a weapon. I was five years old, and I firmly believed that each night when I went to sleep, a robber would break into the house. I needed something to defend myself (and maybe my family), and my brother’s […]

A Mindful Minute: 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise for Kids

This mindful breathing technique is simple, yet powerful. The best part is it can be done anywhere and requires no equipment whatsoever. Breathing exercises can help shift the nervous system away from fight-or-flight mode (causing racing hearts, sweaty palms, shallow breathing etc.) into rest-and-digest mode (where the body heals and regenerates by performing tasks such […]

Negative Thoughts? Throw Them Out (Literally) + 4 Other Ideas

It’s easy to be negative. The human mind is wired to detect and dwell on negative events and circumstances. Think about cavemen who went out hunting and gathering food for their families. Those who survived did so because they were sharply attuned to possible attacks from saber-toothed tigers lurking in the bush. In modern times, […]

For Parents with Anxious Children

As all the kids line up to go to school, your son, Timmy, turns to you and says, “I don’t want to take the bus. My stomach hurts. Please don’t make me go.” You cringe and think, Here we go again. What should be a simple morning routine explodes into a daunting challenge. You look […]

Stop Saying, ‘You’re So Smart!’ 3 Better Ways to Praise Kids

“You’re so smart!” “You’re so creative!” “You’re so… [insert convenient, but possibly damaging description here]” The other day during a frantic scramble to get my 1-year-old to music class, I watched her perform her latest trick — slipping into her little gym shoes and tightening the Velcro straps all by herself. She then stared at […]