Toddlers are constantly learning and processing information. Part of that learning is about boundaries. Enforced boundaries can often lead to yelling, tears, mean words or some horrible combination. When my patience is tested with difficult behavior or my little one needs help calming down, we use some breathing techniques that help us both get centered and able to communicate better.
A Cooling Breath
When tempers flare and one of us or both of us are feeling hot headed we take a cooling breathe to chill us out.
Slowly inhale through pursed lips or a curled tongue, hold the chilled air in for a few seconds and then slowly exhale through the nose.
Dragon’s Breath or Fire Breathing
When sadness consumes us and the world feels like it’s falling apart we take a warming breath to strengthen ourselves.
Make a fist and raise them above your head while sticking your thumbs out towards each other. Slowly inhale through the nose and exhale either over your teeth to make a “ch” sound or through your nose, in short burst so that your stomach is making a series of quick contractions.
When everything is annoying and there is no physical way my eyeballs can roll into the back of my head enough, we let it all out.
Slowly inhale through your nose, forward fold and open your mouth as big as you can while sticking out your tongue and releasing all the air at once with a big “ha” noise.
For moments of deep sadness we dance with the flame of a candle.
Light a candle and slowly blow on the flame just enough to make it dance but not enough to blow it out to.