The 9 Best Emotional Self-Control Techniques For Kids

What is emotional self-control in children? In this article, we will talk about this issue, and also offer you a total of 9 Emotional Self-Control Techniques for Children, which you can apply with them, whether you are a professional or a parent.

These techniques aim to teach children to understand and manage their emotions, in order to emit more adaptive behavior in this regard (especially in the face of negative emotions such as anger or frustration).

As you can see, most of them focus on promoting relaxation in hyperactive states such as those that appear in scolding or upset.

    Emotional self-control in childhood: 9 recommendations

    Before we outline some of the top emotional self-control techniques for kids, let’s take a look at what emotional self-control is all about.

    Emotional self-control is this ability to manage emotions in the face of certain events that affect us (Mostly in a negative way). Thanks to this management, it is also possible to control the physiological activation of the organism.

    This ability is acquired over the years; when they are small, children can show difficulties in managing their emotions, immaturity, inexperience, insufficient language development … Anger, trying new things, asking, doubting … it’s all part their learning, and constitutes a normal phase necessary for their psycho-emotional development.

    However, we can also help them in this phase of self-knowledge, which involves both building their own identity and configuring their autonomy. How can we do this? Through different techniques of emotional self-control for children.

    Emotional Self-Control Techniques For Children

    In this article, we will look at different emotional self-control techniques for children, which can be adapted to the child’s evolutionary and chronological age, as well as their characteristics, interests and needs. Without further ado, let’s get to know them:

    1. Calm cake

    The first of the emotional self-control techniques for children that you can apply is the Calm Cake.

    This technique involves drawing a circle on a piece of paper (which will be the cake) and dividing it into different pieces. In every room we will write a “tip” or mechanism to calm us down when we are too nervous.

    Examples of “tricks” we can use are: take a deep breath, count to ten, imagine a nice scene, etc. The grace of this technique is to collaborate together, and thus to seek, with the child, different strategies (one can do a first brainstorming).

      2. The ball

      The second recommended technique is that of the Earth (or “being a balloon”). It is about imagining ourselves, when we are angry, nervous or irritated, that we are a slowly inflating balloon.

      Once inflated, you will imagine that you want to fly high and relax. We can use a real balloon to illustrate the technique and make it more visual and understandable for the child.

      3. The volcano

      Another one of the emotional self-control techniques for children is volcanism. This technique it is ideal for explaining what the emotion of rabies is. Thanks to this technique, we explained to the child that we are like a volcano; when we are calm and calm, the lava remains in us. Instead, when we get angry, we erupt (lava comes out hard, in every pill).

      If you want the child to understand this metaphor better through a live experience, you can find this experience in this video:

      4. The traffic light

      Another of the most used emotional self-control techniques in children is the traffic light. this one it consists of teaching children to calm down in the face of situations that cause them anger or frustration. Through it, a parallel is made with the operation of a traffic light. It consists of three stages (the three colors of the traffic light).

      How to perform this technique? Through a drawing of the traffic light, made by the child, where he will place (on the right on the side) the instructions that we offer below (and that we will apply when we are angry or nervous):

      At first, when we are in the color red, we will have to stop (like a vehicle in front of a red light); when we turn yellow we will have to reflect on what is happening to us “inside” and look for possible alternatives for action; finally, in the color green, we will calm down and act rationally.

      5. Anti-stress bola

      This technique consists in creating, next to the child (or him, in an autonomous way), an “anti-stress ball”, for squeezing or pressing in times of nervousness, anger, frustration, or anger. An easy way to do this is to use a deflated balloon and fill it with rice, lentils, or chickpeas.

      6. Quiet space

      Another emotional self-control technique for children, in this case, which can be used at home, is create a space of calm and “relaxation” for him. When you go to this space, in times of overactivation or anger, the goal will be to relax and enter a state of calm and peace.

      The place can be chosen by the child, next to his parents; it can be a room space, a storage room, a part of the dining room … it all depends on each family.

      The recommended ideas to make this space a calm and comfortable place are: add speakers (to put on relaxing music), place soft toys or objects that the child likes, soft pillows for relaxing, drawings or paints that inspire calm, aromatic products, etc.

      7. Sandbox

      We can also use stimulation of the senses, precisely to produce the opposite effect: relaxation in moments of hyperactivation. We can do this through sensory stimuli such as sand.

      A technique that we offer you, this time more artisanal, is the creation, next to the child (or, we repeat, that he believes it independently, to his liking), a box full of sand, where you can also put toys. When you are nervous, you can remove the sand, close your eyes and dip your fingers into it, etc., in order to relax and connect with the sense of touch.

      8. Listen to mantras (or music)

      As they say, “music tames animals”. So, music can also be part of emotional self-control techniques for children. In this case, we suggest the use of mantras.

      When we pronounce them (and with practice), our brains are able to calm down.. These can be short words or phrases that the child repeats when nervous or calm, with background music in harmony. On the other hand, we can also use relaxing songs, without using mantras.

      9. Blow bubbles

      This technique uses the control of breathing to get a feeling of relaxation in the body and involves imagining bubbles. For that, it is necessary to control breathing; you have to blow gently so that the bubbles cross.

      This technique, once learned, can be used by children alone (especially when they are small), or we can also accompany them during practice, by simulating that it is a game.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Ahmed, MD (2010). Relaxation activities in primary and child education. Innovation and educational experiences
      • Baena, G. (2005). How to develop emotional intelligence in children. Mexico: Trillas.
      • Olego, I. (sf). Self-control techniques for children. Blog of the Psychology and Speech Therapy Center: your space.

      Leave a Comment