Yesterday I was waiting to meet with a principal and I picked up a magazine in front of me. It was a local school community magazine discussing ‘bullying.’ It read, If you encounter a bully, “stop-look them in the eye, stand up tall and calm down.” ‘Calm down?’ I thought. That sounds like a good idea but the article didn’t explain how to calm down.
Kids are being told to calm down in their school day or to relax by their parents. I believe it is essential to find simple tools for children to effectively be able to calm down or relax. As someone who struggled with severe social anxiety as a child and young adult, I wish I had these tools to go to when I was feeling out of control in my mind and body.
It is my intention to share weekly tools that can benefit the household and classroom each week.
This week the focus is on the breath:
Breathe– Five big belly breaths in through the nose and out through the nose/mouth when you feel frustration, sadness, anxiety etc…
Tips: We have found the breath to be quite contagious. If you are modeling some deep cleansing breaths when you are feeling overwhelmed, anxious, angry your children will pick up on that. Don’t be afraid to breathe deep and loud in moments of discomfort.
Parents: When at a stop sign/red light while driving stop and take 3 deep breaths
Teachers: To start the day off on a positive note have everyone take 5 deep breaths together to kick off the school day.
We realize that it’s not always easy to stop and breathe especially when we are feeling overwhelmed with emotion. Use these tools as a practice to help incorporate more mindful breathing into the lives of your students/children and yourself.
We are living in an extremely stressful and fast paced society and people are looking for simple and effective ways to calm down and be happy. If I could share one thing with the entire world that has changed my life, it would be the breath. In through the nose… down into the belly and out.
To see one of our younger students closing our class and for some cute overload.. click