Worry stones have been used across the ages and throughout the world, from the Ancient Greeks to Indigenous peoples, in practices to restore inner peace and calm. The release of anxiety that comes from rubbing a stone between a thumb and forefinger seems as old as time itself. These healing crystals often come from water, are rubbed smooth, and have an oval shape to become a constant companion for those soothed by therapeutic touch.
Still popular today, worry stones are favored because they are easy to use. There aren’t any complex techniques to learn. Rub it between your thumb and forefingers to release tension in any situation. Seemingly simple, these rubbing stones have a rich history of helping people find calm in their often-overwhelming lives.
What is a Worry Stone?
A worry stone is a smooth, small pebble with a thumb indention. This healing crystal is also called a pocket stone, thumb stone, or rubbing rock. They can be naturally occurring stones or carved from precious crystals known for their healing properties.
In earlier times, people would find a stone in a stream and find themselves drawn to the smoothness of the surface. They would keep the stone in their pockets for safekeeping and often found comfort in their portable talisman. Stones were handed down to children as an object of remembrance, and those rubbing rocks often brought comfort to the next generation.
The idea behind the worry stone is to provide an accessible release when you are feeling overwhelmed or nervous. Created to be rubbed between the thumb and forefingers, this style of healing crystal will absorb the fidgeting and return calming messages to the brain. The smooth stone encourages touch, bringing us back to balance with its soothing surface.
How is a Worry Stone Made?
A traditional worry stone is found in a body of water. The small rubbing rock has been worn smooth by running water and has an indentation on the surface that is almost as big as the rock itself. Its smooth surface encourages easy rubbing, and the healing crystal can endure years of use for sensory stimulation.
Not all worry stones are made of rock. They can be cut from polished gemstones or created from bone, metal, wood, ceramic, glass, or other natural materials. Fancy jasper is a popular material for a worry stone, creating a powerful sense of well-being and grounding the holder into the here and now.
How Do Worry Stones Work?
The powerful healing crystal is activated through a process called acupressure. Nerve endings are stimulated in our fingers or palms when we rub the worry stone. The pressure points in our fingers connect to other areas of our bodies, which become stimulated by the brain.
Benefits of a Rubbing Rock
- Relieve tension
- Decrease stress
- Minimize anxiety
Rubbing on a worry stone is a proven way to relieve stress. The rubbing motion activates endorphins, which release a calming effect. These stones are easy to have and use, which makes them a very popular healing stone for any situation.
How Do I Use a Worry Stone?
To use your rubbing rock, hold it between your thumb and forefingers and move it in a way that feels comfortable to you. You can focus on the weight of the worry stone in your hand, how it feels as it moves, and the pressure you feel in your hand and on your fingers. You may also want to focus on any sound the healing crystal makes as it moves in your hand, another grounding element that promotes calm.
It's a great idea to always keep your worry stone with you, whether in your pocket or handbag. Worry stones can be used at home, work, or as you are walking through the world – anytime you need to feel a sense of calm and centering to ease your body and brain.
When to Use a Healing Crystal
- When you’re feeling anxious or having a panic attack
- During meditation
- While having challenging conversations
- In stressful situations
What is the Difference Between a Worry Stone and a Palm Stone?
A palm stone has a similar purpose to the worry stone but is larger in size. Palm stones are large enough to fit in the palm of your hand and beautiful enough to display in your home. Holding a palm stone creates a strong connection between your body’s energy and the stone’s energy.
This larger-shaped stone can be used for relaxation, energy, protection, and meditation, much like the smaller worry stone. They can lay on your skin, energize your home, or be held in the palm of your hand to promote calmness and focus energy.
How to Use a Worry Stone in Meditation Practice
Worry stones blend beautifully with a new or established meditation practice. Rub the stone as you repeat a mantra – increasing intention and reducing distractions. You can choose a quartz-based rubbing rock, such as a Green Aventurine Worry Stone, to align with your natural energy and promote mindfulness.
Access the healing energy of the worry stone during meditation by rubbing the stone or holding it in the palm of your hand. Similar to how a mala used in Buddhism is used to repeat a mantra for every bead, recite an affirmation, intention, or mantra each time you rub your worry stone to keep your practice centered. For a less involved approach, hold the healing crystal in your palm and focus your mind on the weight of it, which can add relaxation to your meditation.
6 Great Stones for Rubbing Rocks
Many kinds of healing crystals work well as worry stones. The most important factor is to find a stone that resonates with you and your energy. There are a variety of gemstones that can alleviate anxiety and encourage a more balanced state of mind.
1. Tiger Eye
A Tiger Eye Worry Stone is a natural companion for the person who wishes to see more clearly. This healing crystal is used to clear tension and bring calm to the mind. Holding a tiger eye worry stone in each hand while meditating is known to bring optimism and stabilizing energy.
This healing stone is most effective when held on your person or in a purse. The talisman will be immediately available for extra energy throughout the day. A tiger eye pebble at the bedside or on your desk is an instant reminder of calm and focus, recentering our mind through times of stress.
Hold the Bloodstone Worry Stone and rub its smooth surface to initiate patience, courage, and selflessness. The energy of this stone supports creativity and an awareness of the present. Beautiful variations of red, black, and grey, and a range of green, make this variety of jasper a unique touchstone to relieve feelings of anxiety.
Filled with motivating energy, bloodstone can amp up motivation when worn as jewelry, placed in your home, or on hand as a rubbing stone for immediate contact. This healing crystal is thought to provide good luck. This rubbing stone’s high frequency is said to protect you from negative energy and the bad intentions of other people.
3. Mookaite Jasper
The healing stone of Mother Earth, mookaite contains healing energy for those experiencing emotional instability and mental imbalance. The Mookaite Jasper Worry Stone balances our desire for calm with our desire for adventure. This healing crystal is believed to bring well-being and strengthen the immune system.
Jasper, in all forms, is believed to be a very powerful healing crystal. Worn as jewelry or displayed within view, the very sight of the stone can increase confidence or encourage focus for meditation. Jasper offers an intensified overall sense of well-being with rich colors and a feeling of gentle relaxation.
4. Lapis Lazuli
Bring calm to your day with the deep blues and star-swirled beauty of the Lapis Lazuli Worry Stone. Believed to encourage self-awareness, this rubbing rock will increase clarity and compassionate energy with every touch of its smooth surface. Let this powerful healing crystal provide the courage to speak your truth with confidence.
Place lapis lazuli under your bed or pillow with pebbles that encourage sleep and shake off insomnia. Lapis lazuli can also be worn as jewelry as long as it is close to you during sleep time. The combination of beauty and power held in this powerful stone is known to be an effective tool for dream work.
5. Rose Quartz
Known as the stone of love, rose quartz is thought to possess a healing energy, calming negativity and promoting healing. The Rose Quartz Worry Stone is known to open hearts to love and compassion, creating strong relationships and healing imbalances of the chakra. Clear your mind and focus your meditation, holding the quartz in the palm of your hand or activating pressure points in your fingers by rubbing it between your thumb and forefingers.
With its soothing and calming effects, rose quartz is also popular for sleep. Hold a palm stone in your hand before bed and focus on any problems to release your anxiety and ensure positive vibes throughout the night. The stone of love is believed to open your heart to give and receive love, perfect for those interested in improving (or obtaining) a love life or self-love.
Believed to be one of the most powerful healing crystals, amethyst is a type of quartz that has been called upon for centuries to promote well-being. A Chevron Amethyst Worry Stone is the perfect pocket-sized rubbing stone to soothe anxiety and irritability and balance mood swings. Known as an all-purpose stone, the amethyst is an ideal stone to have on hand at home and while out.
Amethyst is the perfect healing crystal for bedtime energy. Keep this protective stone on your bedside table or under your pillow to purify your mind and prepare you for a restful night. Known to relieve stress and anxiety, this stone will have you waking refreshed and relaxed.
What Makes a Worry Stone Powerful?
You do. In addition to the centuries of civilizations recording the use of healing crystals, our minds remain open to the healing energy provided by these beautiful rubbing stones. From the teachings of Sumerians of 5,000 years ago to those of the modern therapists of today, worry stones have built a very powerful resume.
People of ancient Greece, Ireland, and Tibet have picked up stones to unknowingly stimulate nerve endings in the fingers and release endorphins that make us feel better. A simple yet powerful tool of healing and empowerment, worry stones have successfully healed minds and soothed senses across the globe and throughout the ages.
Where Do I Find a Worry Stone?
Quality healing stones are sourced by reputable businesses to provide healing energy. Choose rocks that have been lovingly and intuitively picked for each person, originating from sources all over the world. Each rubbing rock represents a source of calm, strength, and mindfulness for the individual who holds it in their hand and rubs the smooth surface.
Find a stone that matches your energy:
- Moonstone – for peaceful sleep and connecting with nature
- Black onyx – strength, healing grief, and happiness
- Black agate – reduce anger and nervousness
- Moss agate – relieve stress
- White selenite – for mental clarity
Start Self-Soothing with Stones
If you are considering a non-invasive, natural way to address stress and anxiety, a worry stone is an effective method. When feelings of anxiousness start to creep up, grasp the healing stone and focus on calming thoughts. Feel the weight of the rock. Lose yourself in the smooth surface for a period of time.
Rubbing a worry stone can be a highly effective self-soothing technique. By channeling stress into a positive motion – rubbing the stone – you give your body a release of uplifting chemicals that can change your outlook and soothe your worry. Using a rubbing rock can be a good way to rechannel excess energy into a reasonable distraction until you are better able to cope with a situation.
Whether you are an avid collector or have not yet started your journey into the benefits of healing crystals, worry stones are a wonderful place to begin. No training is needed. Just choose a rubbing rock that speaks to you and rub your worries away.