5 ways of finding calm
Sometimes your child really needs a relax. But it can be quite a challenge to help them do this.
Relaxing helps our bodies unwind, slows our breathing and our heart rate. It helps our immune systems and concentration. But how do we do it?
Here are five ways your child can find calm – and once they find calm, they will start to relax.
1. Try meditation together
Lie side-by-side on the floor and gently say hello to each part of your body, giving them a wiggle or small movement as you do. Start with your toes and move up to the hair on your head!
Encourage your child to just think about each body part at a time and see how it is feeling.
2. Practice some ‘square breathing’
Take a deep breath in while you count to four. Hold the breath counting to four. Then breathe out while counting to four. Hold the breath counting to four again.
You can trace a square in the air while you do this or use your fingers to count to four for each step.
As your child focuses on the breathing, other thoughts and emotions should drift away.
Use a bubble wand and mix (dishwashing liquid and water work just as well) to take turns blowing bubbles. Take big, deep breaths for slow, big bubbles or for lots of little bubbles.
Talk about how the bubble floats away in the air and how far it might float before it pops.
Encourage your child to sit with you and blow the bubbles, but not necessarily chase after them (this time)!
There is comfort in repetition, so find one or two of your child’s favourite stories or picture books. Next find a comfortable place to sit together. Once you’re settled, quietly and calmly read together.
Try to take it in turns if they know the story, or ask them quiet, easy questions to keep their focus on the book.
5. Music and dance
Sometimes letting go of everything else is just what you need to find calm!
Play a song on your device, turn up the radio or sing a favourite song as you dance around together. This helps your child to let go of everything else that is happening and enjoy being in the moment.
Once you introduce your child to these techniques, they can learn to do them for themselves! They might grab a book and find a quiet corner, or do some quiet square breathing. If it doesn’t seem to be working to start with, persist. This is a skill they will use for the rest of their lives!