The Importance of Animal Totems

Life is stressful. There’s no way around it, and everyone deals with feelings of stress, uncertainty and anxiety about what’s to come. In times of turmoil, have you ever looked at your cat sleeping soundly on the couch, a bird effortlessly soaring through the clouds, or a turtle lazily wading through a pond and thought: “They must have it so easy”?

The many creatures within our world sometimes emulate things that we humans wish we could ourselves, whether it be bravery, keen instincts, or an overall sense of tranquility. In some Native American traditions, it’s believed that each person is connected with nine different animals who will accompany them in some way through life. These different animals, sometimes called spirit animals or spirit guides, each approach us in some way at certain points in our lives and provide representation of something we’re personally lacking, like good instincts, respect for ourselves or the inability to relax and trust oneself. No one can tell you what to do in your life except yourself, but it’s a comforting feeling knowing something out there is looking out for you and helping provide some sort of guidance.

This brings us to the subject of totems. The totem itself is a symbol that represents your chosen animal. It can be a painting, a tattoo, a small figurine, or in many cases, jewelry. Having your animal totem close to you gives you moments of self-reflection within a busy day, grounding you to the present and aiding you in remembering what’s important to you alone.


Here are some animal-themed jewelry we have available at With Love Darling, and their meanings behind each one:


Frog: Water, cleansing, rebirth, sensitivity, medicine, hidden beauty, peace, adaptability, metamorphosis.


Hummingbird: Messenger, timelessness, healing, warrior, energy, vitality, infinity, affection, playfulness.


Lizard: Conservation, vision, self-protection, hidden defences, shrewdness, variation.


Peacock: Immortality, dignity, self-confidence, self-esteem, knowledge, refinement, beauty, sexuality, pride.


Turtle: Nurturer, shy, protecting, patience, strength, innocence, endurance, longevity.


Whale: Wisdom, provider, intelligence, kindness, deeper awareness, nurturing, navigator, communication.


Butterfly: Metamorphosis, transformation, balance, grace, ability to accept change, lightness, soul, vulnerability.


Dragonfly: Flighty and carefree, strong imagination, higher aspirations, lightness, joy, transformation.


Swan: Grace, balance and innocence, soul, love, beauty, elegance, transformation, dreams.


Beetle: Hard work, creativity, ambition, intuition, teamwork, change.


Dove: Peace, love, messages, new beginnings, pacifism. 


Elephant: Strength, power, affection, loyalty, royalty, wisdom, reliability, sense of history, pride.

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