It’s sometimes easy to forget that our little people come with big emotions that can also be incredibly overwhelming. Even as adults we can struggle with dealing with anxiety and stress and yet we have the benefit of maturity and experience.
Here are 5 top tips for helping children find calm and learn how to regulate their emotions:
1. Nose, Chest, Tummy Breathing! Take 3-5 slow deep breaths thinking about the breath travelling from their nose, down through their chest and making their tummy stick our as far as they can (you can make this funny by seeing how far you can stick your tummies out😀) then slowly breathing it out again in the reverse order.
2. Meditate! Ok so not so easy if they are having a full on temper tantrum but the after effects can last for hours. Having a calming guided meditation session is so wonderful for calming the nervous system and easing the mind. This technique I used all the time with my class at school and it worked a treat. If anything they would get annoyed with me if we missed session. If you don’t feel confident creating your own guided stories the I recommend the Insight Timer App for great free guided mediations.
3. Scribble It! Having a scribble journal is great tool for children to blurt out all their thoughts swimming around their head onto paper and then then together you can discuss how they made them feel. This is great for children who sometimes struggle to talk about how they feel or what’s made them angry etc.
4. Move Ya Body Baby! Physical movement of any kind – jumping, skipping, running (not running away though), gets the happy endorphins going so a child can shake those horrid stress hormones. Quite often a child is reluctant to start dancing or jumping around when they are cross but if you model it and encourage them to join in they often can’t help but laugh.
5. Get Creative! It’s not only great fun but scientifically proven to reduce symptoms of stress and anxiety. Whether it’s building a den, making up a story, dancing the can-can, going on a bear hunt or even getting crafty (check out our intuitive art projects here – creating art based on imagination, feelings and intentions) – all of them will benefit your child’s emotional wellbeing.