Swan Mothers

Discovering Ourselves through Parenting

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

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, 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.” or “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.

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Tapping Script for Choosing Joy

I just went through and did this using your script. What an amazing experience! I’ve looked into EFT for a few years now, but never really took the time to DO it. I was always so intimidated. You helped change that. Thank you.–Laura

My journey from shock and overwhelm (after hearing “We think she’s autistic.”) to acceptance and joy has been supported by energy-shifting tools such as homeopathy, meridian tapping, Matrix Reimprinting, and reading. This post is a how-to for one of my favorite techniques.

The “Choices Method” is an EFT technique developed by Patricia Carrington, Ph.D. It is one of my favorite meridian tapping techniques because I find the wording “I choose” so empowering.

Try out this tapping script.  Adjust the words so that they accurately reflect how you feel.  (See the Super-Easy Tapping Guide for a quick how-to.)

Begin by considering the statement “I have this difficult life.”  On a scale of 1 to 10, rate how true this statement is for you.

Tap on the Karate Chop Point while saying:

  • Even though I’ve been on this path of suffering for so many years, I choose to forgive myself.
  • Even though I’ve been giving up everything for so long, I choose to love myself.
  • Even though I have this difficult life, I choose to experience joy every day.

Now tap through the points. (If you need directions, see the Super-Easy Tapping Guide.)

TH: This path of suffering.
IE: I give everything for my children.
OE: I have a difficult life.
UE: This path of suffering.
UN: I give everything for my children.
CH: I have a difficult life.
K27: This path of suffering.
UA: I give everything for my children.
TF: I have a difficult life.
IF: This path of suffering.
MF: I give everything for my children.
RF: I have a difficult life.
LF: I have a difficult life.

Tap again on the Karate Chop point saying:

  • Even though I’ve been on this path of suffering for so many years, I choose to forgive myself.
  • Even though I’ve been giving up everything for so long, I choose to love myself.
  • Even though I have this difficult life, I choose to experience joy every day.
TH: This path of suffering.
IE: I choose to forgive myself.
OE: I’ve been giving up everything for so long.
UE: I choose to love myself.
UN: I have this difficult life.
CH: I choose to experience joy every day.
CB: This path of suffering.
UA: I choose to forgive myself.
TF: I’ve been giving up everything for so long.
IF: I choose to love myself.
MF: I have this difficult life.
RF: I choose to experience joy every day.
LF: I choose to experience joy every day.

Tap again on the Karate Chop point saying:

  • Even though I’ve been on this path of suffering for so many years, I choose to forgive myself.
  • Even though I’ve been giving up everything for so long, I choose to love myself.
  • Even though I have this difficult life, I choose to experience joy every day.
TH: I choose to forgive myself.
IE: I choose to love myself.
OE: I choose to experience joy every day.
UE: I choose to forgive myself.
UN: I choose to love myself.
CH: I choose to experience joy every day.
K27: I choose to forgive myself.
UA: I choose to love myself.
TF: I choose to experience joy every day.
IF: I choose to forgive myself.
MF: I choose to love myself.
RF: I choose to experience joy every day.
LF: I choose to experience joy every day.

Reconsider the statement “I have this difficult life.”  On a scale of 1 to 10, rate how true this statement is for you now?

Notice any changes in your feelings.  Note any feelings in your body.  Consider tapping on any memories or sensations that come up.  If you need support or direction for optimizing your tapping time, considering working with an energy psychology professional.

Prepare to be Amazed as Your Life Gets Easier with Each Session

Did you try the tapping?  Did you notice anything?  I’d love to hear about your experience in the comment section below.
If nothing happened, please see

The Difference Between Mundane and Miraculous EFT: One Session with a Pro can Change Your Life

and read how I went from EFT skeptic to convert.

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The Difference Between Mundane and Miraculous EFT: One Session with a Pro Can Change Your Life

Perhaps I shouldn’t admit this, but my first experiences with EFT (a meridian tapping technique) were rather uninspiring. When I first heard about tapping, I still thought it was my job to fix my children.

I was always looking for ways to change and improve them. Somewhere I read about using the EFT technique to help children manage their emotions and avoid intense outbursts. I decided I needed to teach my children this technique. The testimonials were convincing.

EFT On My Own

From the written instructions, I wasn’t entirely sure how the process was supposed to work. I found the whole tapping thing odd and complicated.

Not surprisingly, my results were unspectacular. I got out what I put in – not much.  After one attempt to tap on my children, I placed the book on a bookshelf and deemed this another over-hyped modality.

Often, a technique or remedy is not right for us and our children. But sometimes, there is a timing issue. We may not be ready or the moment might not be ripe.

When the time is right, a teacher will appear.

A year or two later, a group of mothers at an on-line forum I frequented began discussing EFT. Coincidentally, a woman I knew contacted me and told me her friend wanted to practice EFT on a mother of an autistic child. “Are you interested?”  she asked.

While I was pretty sure this tapping thing would not work for me , the offer came during my darkest days. I was desperate and willing to try almost anything.

EFT with a Practitioner

When I walked into Linda Kent’s home office, I did not know what to expect. I was surprised to learn that this technique was not about fixing my children. It was about helping me feel better.

Linda asked me a number of questions and then started tapping on me. She explained that I might feel sensations in my body or remember incidents from long ago.

She tapped on me and helped me formulate set-up phrases like those I use in the demo. I was convinced nothing was happening, but sat there politely while she tapped and talkead.

I no longer remember what we were tapping on, but when she said, and I repeated, “Even though I feel so alone, I deeply and completely love and accept myself,”  something deep inside of me cracked opened. My tears flowed and flowed and healing began.

It was then that I understood the power of EFT.  In that moment, something shifted.

That first session was transformative for me.  It took me on a journey of deep healing. It led to my studying EFT and Matrix Reimprinting and using them often for myself and others.

Please don’t be discouraged if you don’t feel much the first few times you tap — even with a practitioner. I believe that the early sessions “prime the pump.” They start balancing and opening energy channels.

Stick with it, work with a practitioner or try a group session. When it starts working for you (and for many people this is during the first session), you will be forever grateful to have this handy tool in your pocket.

I plan to resume group and private tapping sessions soon. Comment if you’re interested in experiencing meridian tapping for better, easier parenting. Or email nataliaerehnah@gmail.com

In the interview below, I talk to Annabele Fisher about my journey with EFT and Matrix Reimprinting.

Be the Best Mother You Can Be with Matrix Reimprinting and EFT

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