Imagine the blue grey volcanic mountains holding their position, while the wind blows down to a Mayan tribe watching from below. A boy walking head down catches an elders’ eyes and she decides to ask the child why he looks so glum. “My parents are arguing again, there is no food or money and this years crops are looking pretty shady- I haven’t really been sleeping very well because of it all.” he says.
“Well then I know just the solution!”
Is it a witch doctor for the rains to come?
Is it a God to help us grow more food?
Is it a therapist to help my family get along better?
Well then what is it?
That is when the elder opened the door to her abode and introduced the boy to her collection of handmade worry dolls. Each doll has its own character and is designed to help people project their fears and worries onto another being.
One of the processes of therapy which makes it affective is that we share our troubles and effectively make them someone else’s! We are able to unload our hardest problems, and even if the person listening cannot fix the problem, they are still there to hear it. And thus, we are not alone, and find ourselves belonging to the human race again!
Therapy is great although it may not be the answer to every question. Worry Dolls are a great way for kids (and big kids) to unload their issues onto a new character who is safe and trustworthy. Kids can make the doll themselves or buy them. Tell them any worries or problems they may be having and keep the doll under their pillow or in their pocket. Being a physical representation makes worry dolls extremely useful for kids who often learn best with tactile objects.
There is a Mayan legend that states…
“When a person cannot sleep well due to worries, they tell the worries to a worry doll. They then put the doll under their pillow and during the night the worry doll worries in the persons place, allowing them to sleep well and awake refreshed”.
Different applications – there are now worry doll keyrings, bracelets and various toys in addition to the traditional dolls. The dolls come in so many different sizes and many websites offer a guarantee that the dolls sold are fair trade too.
Worry dolls have been used as part of art therapy, in therapies working with kids who have cancer and other serious diseases, have observed massive benefit in using worry dolls with kids who find a soul companion in them.
Ray Medhora can be found practicing child and family therapy in Sydney Australia as well as training other aspiring counsellors to help them reach their goals.. Ray always feels odd writing in third person.