We all get upset every now and then. But have you ever considered how you act, behave and look? Do you scream, throw things, curse, or are you one of those “good” emotional guides who simply takes a deep breath to calm down? When it comes to toddlers’ social and emotional development they use us, adults, as role models in many situations – even when they learn how to calm down effectively. There are different ways to practice how to calm down both before and after something frustrating has happened. This week’s “1 minute Peppy Talks” provides you with a good tip.
Exercise; There are several occasions each day when your child is out playing tag, running/dancing to music or any other activity that involves running. Next time your outside playing, try and pause the kids when their pulse is up and ask them to breathe deeply ten times and close their eyes. Afterwards, you can explain the purpose that:
“You have been practicing calming down with the aid of breathing. This technique could also be used when you are very angry, sad or upset”.
Ask; How did it feel yo breathe and count to ten?
- What do you usually do to calm down when you are upset?
- In what ways can you calm down if you are upset?
- How does it feel in your body when you are angry? When you are sad? When you are upset?
Purpose; To practice different ways to calm down
Want to experience more? For younger children this might be a step too much as they first need to learn to label their own emotions. When you notice that your child is upset, try and help by confirming their feelings: “I can see that you are upset” and redirect their focus by saying “I wish you could calm down right now – here do you want to draw me a painting?” or something similar. Here’s a good exercise that we did a few months back that helps your child label emotions. Just make sure that your child doesn’t use tantrums and outbursts to get what he/she wants.