A portable technique you can take wherever you go.
The important pieces are:
– that you explain it and do a practice run with your child before you actually use it (so that they understand the tone of it….it is ‘for’ them not ‘against’ them)
– it is for when they are heightened and needing a hand to get back down
– the way you intercept and scoop them onto your lap needs to be confident
but not overly rushed out forceful
-as you scoop them up be really frugal with your words. Saying something like “I can’t let you do that’ or ‘that’s not safe’ should be enough
– the tone needs to NOT be that they are in ‘trouble’ … but more so that you are alongside them helping them de-escalate while their mind and body are still learning how to work together to do that
– sit them in your lap facing outwards (it keeps it less confrontational and is easier than to hold them)
-your ankles gently crossed over their legs and arms around their torso and arms will help keep them (and you and the space) safe and help them calm their flailing
– key key KEY is you mindfully slowing and deepening your breath for theirs to mimic
-don’t talk. There isn’t any need to. If you’ve explained how it is going to be your actions will be all they need.
-catch and release….once you feel their body soothe let them out to see how they go. If they step out and heighten back up you know it was a bit early and you can just repeat it.
-it’s not magic. Nothing is. Them being able to count on you to help them this way as much as you are able to manage over and over and over while their brain maps up is going to take the two of you further towards easier days than a whole lot of the other stuff you’ve tried.
-things go way better when we have a plan. We carry out body differently… more confidently…and the kids get the sense that we have ‘got this’ and so can get on with being a kid