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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Badrock

How to make a worry doll and why they are so useful

Worry dolls have long been part of art therapy. They are simple yet effective tools to externalise internal conflict. So lets dig a little deeper and find out why they are so useful and how to make worry dolls.

The reason we can find going to therapy so effective as adults is we get to talk about our problems. We share our thoughts and the whole unloading of our burdens to another person can have a great affect on our ability to create a bit of distance between our thoughts, emotions and our inner being. It is through this process that we start to benefit from the therapeutic affects; Our mood lifts, we have purged our worries and gained some helpful tools so we can (hopefully) manage our mental health road blocks independently in the future.

Children, on the other hand may be a little reluctant to talk to a stranger. The process might be overwhelming, reducing their cooperation to open up via verbal dialogue.

This is why worry dolls are so useful. Children can create a little person, with their own identity, needs, wants, likes and dislikes. They can even give it a name!

Through play - with the doll - children can open up to the worry doll, telling them all their problems, fears, and burdens without the pressure from a formal therapeutic environment in a mental health professional's office. A child might find this worry dolls a safe and trustworthy companion to open up their little world.

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”.

So, how can we make our own worry dolls? Check out the video below to see how I made a set of worry dolls just using pipe cleaners.

I made them for my little girl and she LOVED them. We made a whole family !

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