When your child is anxious, it’s natural to want to help them feel better. However, when we try to protect them from things that are upsetting, we may, accidentally, be making their anxiety worse. The best course of action is to teach them to deal with it in a healthy manner, rather than trying to take them out of the uncomfortable situation and reinforcing that getting upset is a good way to cope. Instead, talk to them. Let them know they are going to be okay, even if they are scared. Unfortunately, you can’t promise your child that their fears are unrealistic. But you can express your confidence that they are capable of facing their fears and feeling less afraid over time.

When you are talking your child through an anxious moment, try to avoid leading questions, such as “Are you worried about the test tomorrow?”, and instead ask open-ended questions, such as “How do you feel about the test tomorrow?”. It can also be helpful to play the “What If” game – What if their fear does happen? How would they respond? Who would they ask for help? Make a plan with them and give them confidence that your expectations are realistic – you don’t expect them to do something they can’t handle. Use calm body language and gentle tones to show that you are calm. This may help them gain a sense of calm as well. Remember though, validation doesn’t always mean agreeing with them. We don’t want to belittle their feelings, but we also don’t want to amplify them. Let them tell you about their fears, listen to understand rather than to respond, and then encourage them. A good example of this is, “I know you’re scared and that’s okay. I’m here and I’m going to help you through this”. Express to them that you understand the work and energy it takes to work through their anxiety, especially if it’s something they need to do over and over again.

The good news is that there is something called the “habituation curve”, which is a fancy term for “getting used to it”. Meaning their anxiety will drop over time as they continue to successfully come in contact with their stressor. However, it’s important to remember that this contact must be at the child’s pace, taking small manageable steps and done with care and compassion. Otherwise, you risk making their fears worse. It may take longer than you like, and it may not drop to zero, but that is how we learn to get over our fears, one step at a time, with repeated exposures. The most difficult time to face fears is the ‘Before Period’, such as before giving a presentation in front of the class. Try to reduce the anticipation by avoiding dragging out a long conversation before hand.

Lastly, kids are very perceptive and pick up on our reactions and behaviors. If you experience anxiety or high stress, they are going to notice how you handle it and imitate that response. If you let them see you managing that stress and anxiety calmly, working through it, and feeling good about making it to the other side of the moment, they will imitate that too.


To get your child and family help with anxiety please schedule an initial consultation with one of our our amazing clinicians!


Written by Emily Brown

As the mental health needs of our world rise and the stigma around mental illness falls, more and more people are becoming aware of the power of mental health therapy. Therapy is a beautiful opportunity to explore challenges and reshape our views of ourselves and our world.

And while the number of people seeking individual therapy continues to grow, most people have yet to discover the joy and power of group therapy. 

Group therapy is a place, like individual therapy, for someone to explore their thoughts and feelings in a safe and supportive environment – but it carries several unique advantages. 

Unlike individual therapy, group therapy gives everyone an opportunity to connect with other people living through similar experiences. Suddenly, the task of overcoming a particular difficult challenge is a group effort, with multiple others supporting each other through it. What used to be a person’s deepest burden held in isolation is now held in love with other caring hearts. The more we support and share with one another, the more we form strong bonds to withstand the many trials of life.

In addition, group therapy can be a cost effective way to remain connected with quality mental health services. Most group therapy services are less than half the price of an individual session, and for many, this represents something that can be maintained for more extended periods of time. It allows for continued connection and exposure to the practices that lead to abiding mental health – and this can make a huge impact over the course of a lifetime. Maintaining long term exposure to life changing truths is – well, life changing!

Also, group therapy can be an excellent supplement to individual therapy, as it can normalize many of the difficulties we experience. Once we realize we are not alone, and perhaps begin to see other people succeed as they work through similar issues, we can take courage in facing our own challenges. Sometimes all it takes is a change in perspective and a few others encouraging you along the way.

Finally, group therapy gives everyone the opportunity to be a healer, not just a patient. As we each create space for the difficulties of those around us, we are giving hope and healing to those who need it most. Group therapy can be wildly fulfilling in this way – allowing us all to walk away feeling like we are part of something bigger than ourselves. And sometimes, when we care deeply enough about others to serve them, we discover our own answers along the way.

Please reach out to us today to get connected in our therapy groups!


Written by Hunter Wilson

Parents are wondering how to explain many tragic/violent events that are covered in the media to their children. Parents want to protect their children but they also want to have influence and be a support to their child as they face the realities of this world. Here are some tips to guide you as you communicate with the varying ages of children in your family. 

For younger kids, model calm and clearly communicate that they’re safe, even if what they’re seeing or hearing is scary. Don’t let news stories repeatedly play in front of the children, let them hear it from you and then encourage them to go about their important childhood focuses, such as play.

For school-age kids, provide them an opportunity to tell you what they saw/heard and ask any questions that are on their mind. Provide empathy and answer questions honestly-but limiting details, concretely and with age appropriate words.

For teenagers and young adults, discuss healthy ways to channel their emotions and voice what they believe in. Give them examples of how you cope with the stress of tragic/violent events happening in our world. Encourage your teen to have balance through focusing on good things in their life and making a difference through volunteering. 

For kids of all ages, help them make sense of how these events fit into our world’s history in an honest, age-appropriate way. Open up the opportunity for them to always feel free to come to you with questions and emotions about things they hear in the media. Model balance by getting away from screens and media input and engaging in self-care and family time. Empower your child and teen to be the change they want to see in the world.

Raising kids can be hard. We all need a team of support in our community and resources to help us as parents. We are here to support you and your child through our therapy services. In addition, books are a great parenting resource and we wanted to share some great ones that we often recommend to parents. If you chose to purchase one of the items featured in this post, we may receive a small commission for it.


Book on Emotion Regulation 



Children’s Books for Feelings Identification



Children’s Books to help with Separation Anxiety




Book to help with Positive Self Talk and Resilience



Self Compassion/ Mindfulness





General Anxiety



Personal Safety Skills



Child Grief


Adult Grief



Books on Parenting



Books on Divorce