Check out this video – Dr. Gordon Neufeld provides answers to anxiety in children and youth. As the holidays approach, many children start to experience escalating anxiety. The school year is well under way, report cards are soon to be distributed, and families become busier. If anxiety has been impacting a child in your life, for parents, it can feel quite frustrating and worrying to see them in such distress. Few parents feel comfortable being asked to sit on a wait list for months on end to ease a child or youth’s suffering. You, as parent and/or caregiver, can start to turn the tide on anxiety by understanding what is going on from the inside out, and making sense of what your child or youth is experiencing.

After working and studying in the field of counselling for more than 25 years, there are a few teachers and mentors who stand out from the crowd. Dr. Gordon Neufeld is one of those people. Dr. Neufeld has a solid and grounded wisdom family problemsabout children, and about the path to reaching our full potential (even as adults). I first came across his work in the early 1990’s. I found it fresh, and reassuring – the relationship between parents and children is important; really foundational to good outcomes. Parents caring for children, so they grow up and mature is the natural way of things, and it’s how our species has evolved. This seems obvious, yet, as Dr. Neufeld observes, we have more parenting advice books and courses than our Great-Grandparents ever had, we understand more about the brain and development, but parenting is getting harder and seems less “intuitive” than ever before. Thankfully, many people over the centuries have spent their lives documenting and studying the subtle and critical elements of parent-child relationships, and others have advanced brain science so that we now have so much information about the emotions, child development and the brain, it would take a lifetime to take it all in. Distilling centuries of accumulated research to make sense of children and youth to their parents and caregivers has been Gordon Neufeld’s contribution to the field.

After opening my practice and meeting several parents who were puzzled about how to support their children or adolescents with anxiety, I  returned to Dr. Neufeld’s teachings. Having attended his first ever “Intensive” training in 2001, and leaning heavily on this body of knowledge through my own children’s early years, I knew there were ways through a host of common problems parents and children face. I have re-aquainted myself with his work, and I am now part of a small international cohort of “Advanced Studies” students with the Neufeld Institute. For me, it feels like coming home to “common sense” and a deep sense of things feeling “right”. I am struck how critical the job of parenting is to the future generation(s). I want parents, teachers and caregivers to have access to this knowledge. With pleasure, I will pass on this video of Gordon Neufeld’s May 2012 address, “Making Sense of Anxiety in Children and Youth”, courtesy of the Dalai Lama Centre for Peace, who have uploaded this video at no cost.

I hope you enjoy this talk, and that you find the material useful.  I counsel many parents and youth about coping with and recovering from anxiety using Dr. Neufeld’s approach. I welcome your requests to discuss your particular situation, and I am happy to work with a range of common parent-child concerns. Call or email and I will make time to speak with you at my earliest convenience.