Crystals for Children who Live with Anxiety
Do you or someone you know have a child who experiences excessive worry or anxiety? I do and I know from experience how debilitating this can feel. You feel responsible for your child’s thoughts, feelings, emotions and behaviour but you also feel helpless in soothing and comforting them. All you want to do is “fix” them but you have no idea how. You end up feeling frustrated and, as hard as you try not to, sometimes you even show this frustration to them. You’re only human but you feel awful because this doesn’t help your child and it doesn’t help you.
I’ve been on a quest lately; a quest to see how, as a parent or carer, we can complement the work of health care professionals in helping those of our children who live with anxiety as part of their everyday life. This blog article is the beginning of a journey into the world of living with anxiety. We are going to start by looking at the way we respond to a child who is experiencing worry or anxiety.
The Words We Speak Become The House We Live In
The journey started with the discovery of the informative website Go Zen which specialises in providing parents, carers and professionals with life enhancing programs for children. It became clear to me that one of the fundamental ways in which we can help our children is via the way in which we speak with them and to them.
I’m a great believer that the words we speak become the house we live in and therefore how we respond to our children when they feel anxious or worried is crucial for their well-being and ours too.
In a blog article from earlier in 2017 Founder of Go Zen Renee Jain shares the common phrases that she would hear from her parents when she was feeling anxious and how they would affect her. These are worth sharing as there are valuable lessons to be taken from them.
Also, because we love our crystals, I’m going to show you a number of different crystal healing techniques to complement Jain’s suggested advice.
Phrase Number 1: It’s going to be okay. Trust me.
This is a common response to a child who is worrying about something or who is feeling anxious and a one that Jain heard frequently. The danger with this response is that the child’s mind is repeating the message (often very loudly) that everything is not going to be okay.
I spent a couple of years as a HypnoBirthing® Practitioner, which as the name suggests, is based upon Hypnotherapy. One of the main things that we learn through hypnotherapy is that the mind controls the body; the body is the mind’s faithful robot. Often when the child feels worry or body anxiety there will be a physiological response. Their heart races, their palms become sweaty or their tummy may feel funny.
This physiological response is a protective mechanism that is hardwired within us. It’s commonly referred to as the Flight or Fight response and ultimately it’s there to keep us safe. Anxiety can trigger this response and flood the child’s body with a cocktail of chemicals whose purpose are survival… and they are powerful.
It is for this reason that words of reassurance cannot break this neurological response. The words are meaningless in this situation. Instead we need to calm the child’s nervous system.
Crystal Technique Number 1 – Breathing with Blue Lace Agate
- Sit with your child, or lie down if you prefer. Whichever position you choose aim for your feet to be hip width apart.
- Hold a piece of Blue Lace Agate in both hands. Small tumbled stones would be ideal.
- Encourage your child to breathe in through their nose and out through their mouth.
- Ask them to let their breath flow down into their belly filling it as much as they comfortably can and then exhale slowly.
- Encourage them to visualise blue energy from the crystal flowing into their body as they breathe in, soothing and calming as it goes.
- Do this for 3 – 5 minutes.
Phrase Number 2 – There’s nothing to be scared of
Have you ever been scared of something that logically you know you don’t really need to be scared of…but you are any way because you can’t be 100% certain that nothing bad will happen? Perhaps for you it’s a trip to the dentist, a job interview or a first date.
This is how a child might feel about something that although not life threatening, evokes fear. The first step is to validate the feelings of fear that they have. Draw upon your own experiences and let them know “I see you’re scared. I’ve been scared before too and I know what that feels like”.
Fear is a part of life and it will always be there and that’s a good thing. It keeps us safe. As the late Susan Jeffers taught, fear in itself is not the issue, the issue is how we process it. Validation of its existence is a great first step. For children and adults alike.
Crystal Technique Number 2 – Red Jasper
Red Jasper is a wonderful crystal to use to help soothe and eliminate worry. If your child would find it useful to have a worry stone or worry beads for comfort and reassurance, then Red Jasper is an excellent choice. They can carry any configuration of this crystal with them in their pocket, ready to hold and rub when they need extra support.
Phrase Number 3 – Let me tell you the reasons why you don’t have to worry
Feelings are stronger than our logic can ever be and that points to why this phrase is rarely effective in reducing worry. The anxiety response triggers the prefrontal cortex and results in the more logical part of our brain being put on hold, whilst the automated emotional brain takes over.
Again what is required in this situation is to soothe and calm the nervous system. A great way in which to do this is through visualisation.
Crystal Technique Number 3 – Visualising with Rose Quartz
Rose Quartz is an excellent crystal to help soothe and calm the nervous system.
- Ask your child to sit with 2 pieces of Rose Quartz, one in each hand.
- Get them to visualise a peaceful, quiet place.
- Encourage them to breathe in and out comfortably and to begin describing the place they are visualising to you.
- Continue this exercise for as long as it takes for your child to become calm.
Jain recommends that once your child is calm discuss the idea that feelings are not always facts. Encourage them to challenge their feelings by saying “I don’t think you’re really true”
Phrase Number 4 – Stop being such a worrier
This is a phrase that often gets said out of frustration more than anything. The problem is that rarely does an anxious child not realise that they worry more than others. They are often acutely aware of it and reminding them does nothing but make them more anxious.
Jain suggests an alternative approach to this involves explaining the evolutionary basis of worry to your child. She offers this infographic to help explain this to your child.
Crystal Technique Number 4 – Enhancing Learning with Citrine
To help with the understanding of the evolution of anxiety/worry, why not place a large piece of Citrine between you and your child as you learn together. Citrine is an excellent aid for learning new information. It helps you understand and see the practical application of what you are learning.
Phrase Number 5 – We don’t understand why you are so worried
When a child is anxious they also feel scared and helpless. The adult often feels helpless too in these circumstances. If as a parent or carer you do feel anxious about how worried your child is, then empathy can really help.
Recall a time when you felt fearful (and we all have them) and remember how it made you feel. Jain suggests that you then connect with your child using 3 simple words, “I get it.”
A world of difference can made for your child by letting them know that you understand them and that you see them.
Crystal Technique Number 5 – Developing Empathy with Lapis Lazuli and Malachite
This one is for the adults – If you are looking to develop your empathy skills then carry either Lapis Lazuli or Malachite with you and meditate with one/both on a regular basis. These crystals carry the energy of empathy and will really help you connect and understand your child’s point of view.
The one thing that has been evidently clear to me as I start this journey on how to help children with anxiety, is how our first step is to calm the nervous system. This links to how HypnoBirther’s approach childbirth; it is the triggering of the nervous system, specifically the sympathetic nervous system that results in pain during labour. There are a number of different ways in which we can calm the nervous system as outline above, and I’m confident that adding crystals to these techniques will help you achieve calm, peace, empathy and a greater ability to take life in your stride.
Crystal healing is a complementary therapy and is not a substitute for appropriate medical care. Always seek medical advice when and where appropriate.