Breathing Your Way to Calm
Breathing Techniques to De-Stress Kids
Back when I was in school counseling, using breathing techniques to help kids gain control over emotions, especially anxiety and stress wasn’t as common as it is today. Today mindfulness which can involve centering our attention on our senses and using breathing practices to regulate emotion is not only easy to learn and practical but also supported by science. In fact, there is so much information on breathing techniques, it is sometimes hard to know where to start and what to use. I think simple is best. Here are a few that I think fit the bill:
When should you use breathing techniques? Again, while I only used them to help kids prepare for testing, today we are aware of many more options. Here are a few ideas:
- Teach a classroom lesson on emotions and breathing techniques as one way to manage anger or stress.
- Teach a small group on problem solving and teach breathing techniques as one way to calm down and focus.
- Teach breathing techniques in individual counseling.
- Teach breathing strategies to parents who want to help their child be less anxious or stressed.
- Teach teachers simple breathing techniques that they could do with their class before a test, a class or individual performance.
And finally, counselors have one of the most stressful jobs in the United States. Practice a calm breathing technique yourself to begin and end your day.
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