Helping Kids Behave
Part Twelve 

  ¨      Taking Time to Cool Down

a)    Go to a place where you won’t be disturbed or distracted.

b)   Take time (five minutes) to calm down.

c)    Ask for more time if you need it, but ask calmly.

d)   Tell an adult when you are calm.


¨      Positive Self-Talk

a)    Say something positive about how you can handle a situation appropriately. For example, “ I can get myself under control.”

b)   Say this statement over and over until you are calm.

c)    Tell an adult when you are calm.



¨      Visualization

a)    Make a picture of yourself in your head as being calm.

b)    Make a picture of yourself in your head in your favorite place, such as a quiet beach.

c)    Make a picture of yourself in your head doing something you really enjoy.

d)    Keep this picture in your head until you are calm.

e)    Tell an adult when you are calm

¨ Muscle Relaxation

a) For five minutes clench and squeeze your fists and SLOWLY release them.

b) For five seconds SLOWLY roll your neck in circles.

c) Scrunch your shoulders, and then SLOWLY rotate them in circles several times.

d) Rotate your ankles SLOWLY.

e) First raise your eyebrows as high as you can and then SLOWLY lower them.

f) Scrunch and release your face.

g) Continue with any other parts of your body that may feel tense.

h) Tell an adult when you are calm.

*Taken from Davis, Nelson, & Gauger, 2000)

Here are some tips for maintaining self-control. These are also taken from Davis, Nelson and Gauger (2000). It is a good idea to teach children to practice these during time-out. One may wish to make use of a calm-down technique mandatory during time-out.


· Actively listen to what is being said to you.

· Monitor or be aware of your breathing and your body. Are you tense?

· Tell yourself to breathe deeply and slowly.

· If you have any tense body areas relax them. (See muscle relaxation above.)

· If you need a few minutes alone ask for them and continue to relax while alone.


· Be relaxed and calm.

· Describe how you feel. Take ownership for your feelings.

· Don’t assign blame.

· Thank the other person for listening.


· STOP doing, what you are doing, if it is causing a problem.

Helping Kids Behave Part Thirteen
Helping Kids Behave Part eleven
Creative Counseling Home

Disclaimer: This website and its content is intended for trained licensed mental health professionals and school certified mental health professionals to use for their clients / students at their own discretion.

*If you ignore the disclaimer above are using these techniques on yourself and you feel any discomfort or upset it is highly suggested that you seek out a licensed  mental health professional immediately.

"Beyond Art Therapy" is the concept from Dr. Stangline that combines all creative fields in therapy. It is not the traditional "art therapy" but goes beyond to include sand tray therapy, play therapy, mindfulness, meditation, color therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and a vast majority of other therapies.

For any other type of mental health emergency call your local 911 / Police Number immediately.

Dr. Stangline does not offer advice / suggestions to anyone who is not a professional mental health provider, or a student who is studying this field and has questions about mental health programs of study.

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