Swan Mothers

Discovering Ourselves through Parenting

Tools and Words for Reducing Anxiety in Children (Part 1: Changing Old Stories)

on October 1, 2013

Many mothers have noted that their children are anxious.  They eat too much or too little, have trouble falling asleep or wake during the night,  cry easily and melt-down.

As parents, we want to help our children to feel better. We can teach them how to get to a calmer, more relaxed place on their own.

If you have observed that your child is very anxious, consider these questions:

1.       When did this anxiety start?

2.       What makes it better or worse?

3.       What words does my child at these times?

4.       How does she act when stressed or anxious?

If the Anxiety has an Obvious Cause or Starting Point, Use Matrix Reimprinting

Matrix Reimprinting (MR) is a method that engages imagination and problem-solving abilities in a way that changes perception of old events.  Changing perception changes our experience of everything.

Was your child embarrassed by some incident at school?  Was he in an accident?  Did she see something that scared her?

All of us are shaped by our experiences.  Believe it or not, we can change events so that our children are left with a positive (or neutral) experience of them.

How to Facilitate a Matrix Reimprinting Session for Your Child

1.      Ensure that you are calm and centered.

Take a few deep breaths.  If you have strong feelings about the experience you wish to address with your child, do your own work before working with your child.

2.      Choose a peaceful, relaxed time to be with your child.

I like to tap with my children at bedtime.  Reading a book or a foot massage may facilitate a transition to quiet time.

3.      Introduce what you are doing in a way that is appropriate for your child.

“I have learned a magical way to make you feel better.  Would you like to try it?”

If your child says no, please respect his or her choice.  The goal is to empower our children – not to force them to do something against their wills.  We can always try again at a later time if our children seem receptive or interested.

Choose one of these methods for tapping or present your child with these choices:

  • Tap gently on your child while he tells the story of what happened.  (Click on the Super-Easy Tapping Guide to learn the tapping points.)
  • Instead of tapping, touch and hold the tapping points gently while he talks.
  • Model for your child by tapping on yourself.  Encourage her to tap on herself if she is receptive.
  • Use a doll or stuffed bear to demonstrate the tapping.  Encourage your child to tap on the bear while she tells her story.  You can ask, “How did bear feel when his friend pushed him?”  Let your child use her own words as she taps.

4.      Telling the Story

Begin tapping on your child and continue to tap throughout the process.

Encourage your child to close his eyes and see a picture of the incident that you suspect initiated his anxiety.  (There may be many contributing incidents.  Use whichever story the child chooses to tell.  You can work with other incidents at a later date.)

As he describes the scene, tell him to step into the picture and describe what he sees.  What is going on with his younger self that we all the ECHO?  Is the ECHO scared?  Angry?  Confused?

He can then approach his ECHO, introduce himself, and offer to help him by tapping on him.

Using his imagination, your child will tap on the ECHO using simple phrases (see earlier posts) that reflect what the ECHO is feeling.  For example:  Even though you’re very scared because you fell and are bleeding, you’re going to be o.k.  Even though it hurts, your body knows how to heal itself and you can call for help.

In the Matrix, your child has magical powers and can bring in any resource his ECHO needs to feel better.  His ECHO gets to choose.  Perhaps a trusted relative, a doctor, a teacher, or an angel will come to reassure the ECHO that all is well.  Sometimes, the ECHO wants an object to help him – a magic cape to protect him, a toy for comfort, a weapon to defend himself.

Encourage him to provide his ECHO with all he needs to feel better.  Continue to tap on your child as he taps on or talks to his ECHO.

When the ECHO has no further requests and is satisfied that all is well, the ECHO may choose to do anything he wishes.  Often, young ECHOs will want to go play.

At this point, ask your child to observe the new, happy scene.  Ask him to imagine this new picture coming in through the top of his head and filling up his body.  Let him send this new picture out into the Universe.

Then, have him open his eyes.  Stop tapping.

Encourage your child to notice if he  feels different.  Remind him that he can always tap on himself or his ECHOs to feel better.

If you would like to experience a guided EFT/meridian taping session, please contact me. Free tapping circles for mothers coming soon.

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4 responses to “Tools and Words for Reducing Anxiety in Children (Part 1: Changing Old Stories)

  1. Tilla Brook says:

    Aha. Now I make the link between this technique that I know and the words matrix reimprinting that I came across recently. I love that you’re encouraging parents to help their children in this way. It’s so simple and can have profound impact on how we perceive past memories.

    • Do you know the described technique by another name? I notice in my reading that many processes are similar and sometimes, the small variations are what makes them work for certain people. I love that we have options. I use Matrix Reimprinting for myself and recommend it for mother and children who are receptive.

  2. holley4734 says:

    Interesting blog. I may have to try this with my daughter. Thanks! holley4734.wordpress.com

    • If you try it, let me know how it goes. Sometimes my children want to tap with me, sometimes they don’t. The tapping can bring up strong emotions. Working through them can take time and gentleness. The peace that results can be pretty amazing.

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