22 Apr Insights on Anxiety: Kids Dealing with Stress. An Interview with Nicolas Silva
Amarte Es El Arte – The Art of Love. Is an Online Facebook page program dedicated to sharing human development tools for the awakening of consciousness. They have a live program broadcast live on Facebook every Tuesday, 8 PM PST.
Nicolas Silva, an Eagala Certified Mental Health Professional Therapist who works with the Free Rein Foundation is one of their regular guest speakers. A few weeks ago, Nicolas was asked to share his insights on anxiety.
“It is important to bring awareness to the topic of anxiety,” Nicolas explained. “What I really want people to know is that anyone who is suffering from anxiety should know that they are not alone; that there are others too who suffer from the same feelings.”
Occasional anxiety is an expected part of life. A person might feel anxious when faced with a problem at work, before meeting new people, or before making an important decision. But for a person with an anxiety disorder, the anxiousness they feel does not go away and can even get worse over time. Eventually their panic and fear begin to interfere with their daily activities hurting their performance at work or school. These feelings cause a ripple effect, eventually creating problems at home and hurting the people closest to them.
Part of why it is important to talk about anxiety is that it allows people to gain an understanding that this is something real and that it can be helped if you work with a professional. One of the stories that Nicolas recalled while speaking on the show was a reflection on a recent group of teenagers who had just completed an 8-week Equine Therapy program with the Free Rein Foundation in Huntington Beach. The graduation ceremony was a festive and surprisingly open event where the teens began to share their most tender moments with the audience—mainly family and friends, officers of the LAPD who had participated, and the staff and volunteers at the Free Rein Foundation.
One young man stood up and began to share how easy it was to connect with the horses because they could feel and relate to what he had been through. The horse he was talking about had suffered and was seriously abused, just like this boy explained that had been abused. His voice began to waver a bit as he spoke, but some of the other teens who had gone through the same eight weeks began to encourage him to continue. So he kept speaking and as he talked about the experience he realized that both he and this horse had fears, and because of those fears they were unable to trust and open up to others. Now, eight weeks later, this young man was reflecting on what he had learned from working with these rescued horses and as he spoke he began to understand how important it was to face his fears.
As he looked around, he told the audience that with help from the other kids in the group and the direction of the Equine Therapists, he was learning how to open up and share how he felt. Standing there and listening to him speak was a very powerful experience for everyone listening because before their eyes they could see that this young man was realizing that the more he shared about how he felt, the better he began to feel. And sharing how you feel is the first step in being able to overcome the fears and anxieties that are holding you back.
For Nicolas Silva, this story is a powerful reminder that it is ok to seek out help when things in your life do not feel right. The Equine Therapy program is designed to allow the teens to work with the horses out in the corral under the guidance of the therapists. “We let the horses and kids work out activities together, on their own, and the horses have a way of helping the kids to face up to their own problems and anxieties. After each session, we meet to have a snack. The kids journal about their experiences and feelings and we direct them to talk about those feelings and not continue to push them down and become overwhelmed by them.”
If you think you are experiencing the symptoms of anxiety, please reach out to a professional who can help you.
The segment on Amarte Es El Arte – The Art of Love with Nicolas Silva can be heard here.
To learn more about The Free Rein Foundation Equine Therapy Program visit their website here.
To learn more about Nicolas Silva click here.
Free Rein Foundation https://freereinfoundation.org