How martial arts can help kids with anxiety
Anxiety comes from uncertainty and fear. And these can be debilitating to a kid. Now there’s a multitude of reasons why a kid might feel these things, but the solution is always the same.
They find a strength, and certainty within themselves that calms that anxiety and reduces the stress associated with it.
That puts a stop to all the other problems that can develop from that anxiety. Because what happens is that in the absence of that strength and certainty a kid will seek it out from another source. And oftentimes that source can and will be a negative one because they are looking for something that works fast, and is easy to get to.
And as you can see this clearly puts that kid on a road that leads only to negativity and damaging behaviors and habits.
But there is help and there is a solution. And the martial arts can and does provide that.
What happens is that a kid must learn first and foremost that they are responsible for their behavior, they are responsible for their actions not only toward others but to themselves as well. It is their job to decide how they feel toward things that happen to them or things they experience. Once they learn that they can control their emotions, they can control their state of mind and they can control how they feel about things, they can then learn that they have the power of change.
And it doesn’t matter what the source of anxiety is, they can then act against it or act in some way that removes them from that source, or they act in some way that controls it and manages it. The importance of this is that sometimes kids may feel that they don’t have any control over the source of their anxiety. Maybe there are problems at home, or school or in some other area of life. Ok, so they can’t change that event that is happening in the short term, but they can take steps to mitigate or control its effect on them. They can defend themselves by forming good habits, by limiting the damage done to them.
They can act against that source of anxiety.
In other cases where they can exert some control over it they can turn that situation around.
For instance maybe there is a bully at school, they can learn to defend themselves and confront that bully. They can learn confidence and an enhanced self image. They can learn the value of their self worth and that they don’t have to be a victim.
Maybe there is a subject at school that intimidates them because they aren’t very good at it and they develop an anxiety that further inhibits their ability to deal with that subject. The martial arts can teach them confidence and security in the same way it teaches them to deal with a bully. They learn that they have a choice in how they deal with that anxiety and fear. They can seek out help from the teacher or parent or counselor who can then take steps to help them in some fashion, like providing a mentorship.
The point here is that the lessons the martial arts teaches are lessons that can be applied to virtually any source of anxiety and fear. And it can turn that negative event or experience into a positive one that promotes maturity, growth, strength, self worth and value, and wisdom.
A kid doesn’t deserve to be a victim, and they don’t have to be. They have a choice. And they have the means at their disposal to face that anxiety and fear and overcome it. And when they do they develop a sense of success because they have the confidence in their achievement. They earned it through effort and commitment. A problem wasn’t solved for them, they solved it themselves and sought out the tools to help them do it.
The martial arts teaches confidence through success, and it teaches self reliance and internal strength. And this in turn promotes growth and quality of life and that is something any kid can develop for themselves if they take the step to participate in a martial arts class and commit themselves to that learning process.
The ultimate benefit here is that through the martial arts a kid can develop the skill sets and tools to avoid problems before they start. They can develop positive habits to become productive and forward moving. They can see their way to quality of life, and see themselves as deserving of it. And that’s important because the greater their sense of self worth and value the more respect for themselves they have.
And the more they are able to spot and avoid negative influences, and habits. Indeed they begin to develop a genuine desire to seek out and engage in positive and productive habits. And these are things that profit them and continue to benefit them for the rest of their lives.
The best part about this is that the martial arts also provides them with a community they can rely on to come to for help. The people involved in the martial arts are all struggling against something, but they understand that there is a strength through their unity. And whatever their source of anxiety or fear, the community can be relied on for support, positive encouragement and advice that will help any kid overcome any problem they may be dealing with.
Kids shouldn’t be alone, they shouldn’t feel alone, and they don’t have to be alone.
And in the martial arts they aren’t alone.
They are a part of something bigger than themselves, which in turn makes them stronger as a part of that whole.
Article reposted with permission from Go2Karate.com.