My daughter hit the age not too long ago, where she has started to have bad dreams at night, and has found a fear of monsters... It kills me when my child wakes up in the middle of the night of nap crying because she's afraid. It makes me feel terrible!!
So.. I decided that when this happens, it's time to empower her, and make her feel brave, and help her realize that there's nothing to be afraid of. I calm her down, while explaining what dreams are and how they're not real. Then, the fun part. I have her kind of "yell" at her dreams a little bit. Telling them she doesn't want them in her room anymore. It sounds silly, and it is.. silly enough that it gets the stress of the dream out, and has her giggling instead. Then, I have her say a few times that her room is a safe place, and a happy place.
Like I said, I know it seems silly.... but it works for us.