"Calm Down" never works, keep reading for some tools breathing tools that do
Have you ever told a kid to do something and they did it right away?
How about telling them to "Calm down" or "take a deep breath"?
Do they breathe in, but not breathe out? Did they freak out more?
Kids need a little more help to figure out how to properly take a deep breath.
Telling Kids or teens to “take a deep breath,” usually results in a collective, desperate, and panicked inhale that sounds more like hyperventilation than relaxation.
All of our well-intentioned suggestions to “breathe” when children are melting down are worthless if we haven’t taught them how to breathe.
If you retain one thing, remember you MUST use a prop with young children and teens to increase chances of compliance.
Below 5 Simple breathing exercises for kids and teens
4. TRIANGlE BREATH Quite simply, have the child breath in for 3, hold for 3 exhale for 3. Have them use their hands in a triangle shape or use your own to give a visual, do it with them as you talk....breathe in, 1, 2, 3, HOLD, 1, 2, 3, breath out, 1, 2, 3, okay lets try that one more time!
5. SIMPLE QUICK AFFIRMATION--Breathing in, I am calm. Breathing out, I smile. You have to have tried this one when a child is not in the middle of a panic, that way it is not new if you try to use it when the child needs the deep breath. Repeat this 4 times, have them place one hand on belly, one on heart
Deep breathing can help tremendously. But the main challenge is remembering to do it.
Knowing specific (and fun) breathing techniques that are wonderful tools to use for parents, caregivers, family, teens and kids alike. Think of a time you can try them this week. Maybe you can breathe together at bedtime or when anyone in the family is upset.
Give these five methods a try and see how much calmer your household can become.