Back in the day when I was collaborating with others in this field, we had invited child psychologists to help us further the effectiveness of vision improvement with children. Kids can be tough!
I am no child psychologist. But there is a thing or two I’ve learned, that I would like to share with you.
First of all, most children will take a much smaller, but immediate reward, over a much larger, but later reward option. We have to consider this reality, when talking about your child’s eyesight. You are spending money and your time to help your child, but in all likelihood this is not something that will fully reflect in your child’s appreciation of your efforts. Of course, yours may be one of the exceptions – but let’s assume otherwise, because this whole process will work better that way.
Even if your child is willing to forego the quick, small reward, the temptation is ever present. Let’s not present this process to the child as a ‘one day when you’re all grown up, you’ll thank me for having 20/10 vision’. It just doesn’t translate. A child knows nothing about being grown up. It knows about right now, having to deal with another thing. Another thing, that he/she will rather avoid, forget, or stop doing the minute you are out of sight.
Even if your child is not like that, you still want to work this angle. It’s more fun for the child, and easier to grasp.
We need to quick-reward, and throughout the child program, you will find this premise repeated. I will be offering frequent tips, ideas, client success stories, things you yourself can apply. Take these installments slowly, and try to make sense of each one before moving on to the next (otherwise, it is just time wasted).
Now we are on the topic of the differential prescription – the prescription that plays a huge role in maintaining vision health and reducing myopia. As per Installment #7 and preceding, we want to get the correct prescription (plus, hopefully, or a small minus if need be), and then we want the child not only to accept it, but want to wear it. That’s the objective of this installment – how can you influence your child, to want to wear glasses, when there is no immediate benefit (short term reward)?
Take a quick look at this post, for some ideas and inspiration.
Done? So, we have the whole super-vision concept, as one idea. This is a bit easier to tweak if I know you, your child, your circumstance. If you are in a one-on-one program, this is a good time to bring it up in an e-mail question (I’m always, always glad to help!). If you are doing the Web program only, let’s virtual-brain-storm this one.
Super vision. We all want it. There is no need to feel cheesy, the movie theater is filled with adults for every superhero movie. And vision, is a super power you can actually get. You can be better than 20/10. I have some clients, you would not believe what they can see in the distance. One is tempted to break out the binoculars, sometimes. It is, for all intents and purposes, super vision. If you come to me with 20/20, the improvement we can make in a matter of months, will astound you.
Anyways, my point is, you are not selling Santa Clause with this. We are working on super vision. And it’s not supervision ‘when you are all grown up, son’, but just a wee little bit of it growing, every time you put on the special super vision glasses (not differential prescription, in child myopia rehab parlance).
Now, one better even, they may well be secret super vision glasses. Kids love secrets. Kids love super powers (and adults, too). Just don’t under estimate the power of imagination, even if by our advanced age we dream less than we used to. Remember back to those times, when things just had a little more magic than they do today. Adjust this, to suit your own parenting style, and your child’s preferences. Dial up the Santa if it makes sense, or deliver with a dash of reality-science. Still and regardless, we are growing super vision. Some of which we’ll be able to see, soon, when trying to read a blackboard, see a movie clearly, play outside. But in order for super vision to grow, we must wear the super vision glasses. If we don’t, it’s not growing. If we get too close to the page, the evil forces sucking us closer, stop the super vision from growing.
From here, it’s all fair game. Evil powers are glad to take advantage of video games, iPads, TVs. And it’s no lie, either. “How many of your classmates wear glasses?” Bam – the proof is in the reality around your child. “Go see how close they are to the book page.” “How much time do they spend playing on the computer?” “Do the kids who play outside a lot wear big glasses?”
Now, we must introduce the distinction – the glasses that are the evil forces, vs. secret super vision glasses. The glasses that are the evil forces, let you see only if you wear them. Without evil forces glasses, you are blind. Somebody knocks them off, you can’t see. You lose them, you can’t see. They get dirty, you can’t see. You go swimming, you can’t see. Go down a list like that, and pretty soon evil forces sounds quite apropos.
The secret superhero glasses, look a lot like evil forces glasses. They are a disguise, though. They grow super vision.
Combine this with centimeter, as discussed previously, ideally with a fun centimeter, rather than just boring letters. If your child enjoys fun, allow that to be creative, whether or not that’s your personal preference. Just plant the seed for fun centimeter, and let it run it’s course. Many of us secretly have all sorts of fantastic thoughts – as our child psychologist has taught us, sometimes we just need to be the catalyst to introduce this idea.
On to the glasses themselves. What will we pick, for secret superhero frames? This is important.
If you shop online, let the child look around. If you go to a local shop, really pick an extra patient day, and a big shop. Or multiple shops. The more fun the chld has picking a frame, the more the child really makes this his or her own, the more the actual wearing-the-differential-prescription will actually stick. The few hours you spend spinning this into a palatable scenario, will pay off for years to come, day after day. Make it count!
And again, pleas take your time with these installments. Don’t nod your head gravely, think ‘nice work, Alex’, and then spend ten minutes picking out the first frame from the two-for-one section of the closest optic shop. You are probably not the type, but trust me – over the years I’ve had many parents do the grave-head-nodding, and then show up with kids wearing atrocities. Asked in private, more children than I can remember professed an utter lack of love for the choice the parents made for them. And further down the line, with the child ‘forgetting’ the glasses, refusing to wear them, the parents come to me, hands thrown up in exasperation, claiming to have no idea why my strategy didn’t work for them. I know though, that won’t be you. I just had to bring it up, in case of cases.
So, what are we doing today?
We brainstorm the super vision story. Good vs. evil forces. Evil, sucking you into the page. Evil, glasses. Good, growing super powers. Cool, cool secret super power frames for the child. We’ll take this super serious, make this stick.
You can go through 50 more installments, and they’ll be brilliant, if you are getting this one right.
Catch me in the forum if you have questions.
Session: Audio Track
Session: Video Stream