• Understanding your emotions is the first step in calming yourself down.
  • Breathing techniques and mindfulness practices are effective in reducing stress and anxiety.
  • Adopting a healthy lifestyle can have a significant impact on your overall well-being.

It’s really no wonder that mental health issues are on the rise. We’re really in a bad spot–the economy isn’t working for anyone besides the super rich. The planet is boiling. Schools are a mess.

So, how to calm yourself down, when you might be at work or school?

I could feel my jaw getting tighter and my body tensing up just typing those things out. And we live it, every day.

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Self-Calm Techniques.

Calmness is a state of mind that everyone strives to achieve. However, with the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it can be challenging to remain calm and composed. Whether you are experiencing anxiety, stress, or just feeling overwhelmed, there are ways to calm yourself down.

Understanding your emotions is the first step in calming yourself down. It is essential to recognize your emotions and understand what triggers them.

Once you identify your triggers, you can take steps to avoid them or manage them better. Breathing techniques are also effective in calming yourself down. Deep breathing exercises can help slow down your heart rate and reduce tension in your body.

This goes for our kids too. I’m not one to suggest or recommend that we go through life snowplowing the triggers out of our kids’ way. That’s not feasible for the long term.

But, teaching our kids mindfulness and ways to calm down, coping mechanisms–yes, that can work long term.

Mindfulness practices are another effective way to calm yourself down. Mindfulness involves being present in the moment and focusing on your thoughts and feelings without judgment.

Physical activities such as yoga, meditation, or even a simple walk can also help reduce stress and anxiety.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle, including eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and exercise, can also have a significant impact on your overall well-being.

Understanding Your Emotions

When it comes to calming oneself down, understanding one’s emotions is a crucial step. Emotions are a natural part of the human experience, and they can be positive or negative.

Positive emotions, such as happiness and excitement, can be enjoyable and energizing, while negative emotions, such as anger and anxiety, can be uncomfortable and draining.

It’s important to recognize that all emotions are valid and serve a purpose. Emotions are signals that tell us how we are feeling and what is important to us. For example, feeling anxious before a big presentation is a signal that the presentation is important to you and that you want to do well.

However, it’s also important to recognize that emotions can sometimes be overwhelming and interfere with our ability to function effectively. In these situations, it can be helpful to take a step back and examine the situation objectively.

One way to do this is to ask oneself a series of questions, such as:

  • What am I feeling right now?
  • What triggered this emotion?
  • What thoughts am I having?
  • Are these thoughts accurate and helpful?
  • What can I do to address this situation in a constructive way?

By answering these questions, one can gain a better understanding of their emotions and develop strategies for managing them.

How to Calm Yourself Down

Whether you’re at home, work or school, most of these calming down techniques can be implemented without drawing attention to yourself.

While there is no shame in having anxiety, panic attacks or needing to calm down, many people prefer to do this quietly without others noticing.

Breathing Techniques

I have several resources on this blog for breathing techniques. You just have to pick the one that resonates with you or your kids. Some kids will really like the star breathing technique while others may prefer 5 fingers breathing.

In each of these posts, there is a printable to use.

And here are some other breathing techniques that may work for you.

Deep Breathing

Deep breathing is a simple yet effective technique that can help calm the mind and body. It involves taking slow, deep breaths, focusing on the inhale and exhale. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Find a quiet place to sit or lie down. If you’re at work, consider going out to your car and reclining the seat.
  2. Close your eyes and take a deep breath in through your nose, filling your lungs with air.
  3. Hold the breath for a few seconds, then slowly exhale through your mouth.
  4. Repeat this process for several minutes, focusing on your breath and letting go of any distracting thoughts.

Box Breathing

Box breathing is a technique used by Navy SEALs to calm their nerves in high-pressure situations.

It involves breathing in for a certain count, holding the breath for the same count, exhaling for the same count, and holding the breath again for the same count. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Find a comfortable seated position.
  2. Inhale through your nose for a count of four.
  3. Hold your breath for a count of four.
  4. Exhale through your mouth for a count of four.
  5. Hold your breath for a count of four.
  6. Repeat this process for several minutes, focusing on your breath and the counting.

4-7-8 Breathing

4-7-8 breathing is a technique developed by Dr. Andrew Weil that can help calm the mind and body. It involves inhaling for a count of four, holding the breath for a count of seven, and exhaling for a count of eight. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Find a quiet place to sit or lie down.
  2. Place the tip of your tongue against the roof of your mouth, just behind your front teeth.
  3. Inhale through your nose for a count of four.
  4. Hold your breath for a count of seven.
  5. Exhale through your mouth for a count of eight, making a whooshing sound.
  6. Repeat this process for several minutes, focusing on your breath and the counting.

Remember, breathing techniques can be a helpful tool to calm the mind and body, but they are not a substitute for professional help if you are struggling with anxiety or other mental health issues.

Calm Down Worksheet

I know in one of the graphics in this post, it says “think different thoughts.”

I don’t at all mean to be trite or condescending by saying that as an option of how to calm yourself down.

But, sometimes we do have to talk ourselves out of anxiety. After all, we do talk ourselves into it, right? So we have to talk ourselves out of it and force our thoughts down a different path.

One way to do that is this “10 things” worksheet. You don’t need to be especially creative or a good artist to do this. You just write or draw 10 different things.

Chances are, by the time you get to 10, your thoughts will be on something new.

how to calm yourself down worksheet wiht 10 steps

If I was going to do this, I might choose “10 places I love to go” and doodle each one. Or “my 10 favorite sports teams.”

Mindfulness Practices

Coloring

Coloring pages for adults and all ages are all the rage now. Every craft store and big box store carries them.

This is one of my go-to calming activities. I buy most of my stuff at Ollie’s.

But, here is another freebie pdf if you like it.

Meditation

Meditation is a mindfulness practice that involves focusing on the present moment and letting go of distracting thoughts. It can be done in various ways, but the most common form is sitting in a comfortable position with eyes closed and focusing on the breath. Here are some tips for getting started with meditation:

  • Find a quiet and comfortable place to sit
  • Set a timer for your desired length of meditation
  • Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths
  • Focus on your breath, noticing the sensation of air moving in and out of your body
  • When your mind wanders, gently bring your attention back to your breath
  • Don’t judge yourself for getting distracted, it’s natural

Incorporating meditation into your daily routine can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve focus, and promote overall well-being.

Yoga

Yoga is a mindfulness practice that combines physical movement with breath and meditation. It can be a great way to calm the mind and release tension in the body. Here are some benefits of practicing yoga:

  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Improves flexibility and balance
  • Strengthens muscles
  • Promotes relaxation and better sleep

There are many different types of yoga, so it’s important to find a style that works for you. Some popular styles include Hatha, Vinyasa, and Restorative. Many yoga studios offer beginner classes, which can be a great way to get started.

Physical Activities

When feeling anxious or stressed, physical activities can be an effective way to calm down. Here are two types of physical activities that can help:

Walking

Walking is a simple and effective way to reduce stress and anxiety. It can help clear your mind and improve your mood. Walking outside in nature can be particularly beneficial, as it allows you to connect with the environment and get some fresh air.

To make the most of your walking routine, try to walk for at least 30 minutes a day. You can also try listening to music, practicing mindfulness, or bringing a friend along to make the experience more enjoyable.

Exercise

Exercise is another great way to reduce stress and anxiety. It releases endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that help improve your mood. Exercise can also help you feel more confident and energized.

There are many types of exercise to choose from, such as yoga, weight lifting, or running. Choose an activity that you enjoy and that fits your lifestyle. Aim to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, and gradually increase the intensity and duration as you become more comfortable.

Remember, physical activities are not a cure-all for stress and anxiety. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, it is important to seek professional help. However, incorporating physical activities into your routine can be a helpful tool for managing stress and promoting overall well-being.

Healthy Lifestyle

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is crucial for calming oneself down. It is important to focus on a balanced diet and adequate sleep to ensure the body is functioning properly.

Balanced Diet

Eating a balanced diet can help stabilize mood swings and reduce stress. It is important to consume a variety of foods from all the food groups. A balanced diet includes:

  • Fruits and vegetables: These provide essential vitamins and minerals that help reduce stress.
  • Whole grains: These provide energy and help maintain blood sugar levels.
  • Lean protein: This helps build and repair tissues in the body.
  • Healthy fats: These help reduce inflammation and improve brain function.

It is also important to avoid processed foods, sugary drinks, and excessive caffeine. These can lead to spikes in blood sugar and cause mood swings.

Adequate Sleep

Getting enough sleep is essential for mental and physical health. Lack of sleep can lead to increased stress, anxiety, and mood swings. To ensure adequate sleep, it is important to:

  • Create a sleep-friendly environment: This includes a comfortable bed, cool temperature, and dark room.
  • Stick to a sleep schedule: Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day can help regulate the body’s internal clock.
  • Avoid electronics before bed: The blue light emitted from electronic devices can disrupt sleep.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol: These can interfere with sleep quality.

By following a balanced diet and getting adequate sleep, individuals can reduce stress and improve their overall well-being.

Professional Help

If you find that you are struggling to manage your emotions, it may be time to seek professional help. There are a variety of resources available to you, including therapy and counseling.

Therapy

Therapy can be a helpful tool for learning how to manage stress and anxiety. A therapist can work with you to identify the root causes of your emotional distress and help you develop coping strategies.

There are many different types of therapy available, including cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and psychodynamic therapy. Your therapist can help you determine which type of therapy is best suited to your needs.

Counseling

Counseling can also be a useful resource for managing stress and anxiety. A counselor can provide you with a safe and supportive environment to talk about your feelings and develop coping strategies.

Counseling is often used in conjunction with other forms of treatment, such as medication or therapy. Your counselor can work with you to develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs.

It is important to remember that seeking professional help is a sign of strength, not weakness. If you are struggling to manage your emotions, do not hesitate to reach out for help.

Mindfulness

  1. Free Kindness Coloring Pages (PDF sheets)
  2. 26 Free Coping Skills Coloring Pages (PDF sheets)
  3. 23 Mindfulness Activities for Kids and Teens
  4. 16 Free Finger Tracing Calming Cards
  5. Ocean Themed Finger Tracing Cards
  6. Valentine’s Day Yoga for All Ages: Free Printable Yoga Cards
  7. How to Calm Yourself Down: 5 Activities for Any Environment
  8. Triangle Breathing: A Simple Stress Relief Technique for All Ages (free worksheet!)
  9. Positive Self Talk: 10 Free Worksheets for Kids and Adults
  10. Do Chair Bands for ADHD work?
  11. 15 Affordable Calm Down Corner Ideas for School or Home
  12. What is the Star Breathing Technique for Kids?
  13. What is the 5 Finger Breathing Technique to Calm Kids?
  14. 115 Morning Meeting Questions and Ideas for All Ages
  15. Does mindfulness work?

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I calm my anxiety?

There are several ways to calm anxiety, including practicing deep breathing exercises, engaging in physical activity, practicing mindfulness or meditation, and seeking support from a therapist or counselor. It’s important to find what works best for you and make it a regular part of your routine.

What are some quick ways to calm myself down?

If you need to calm down quickly, try taking a few deep breaths, going for a walk, listening to calming music, or engaging in a relaxing activity like taking a bath or reading a book. It’s also helpful to have a plan in place for when you feel overwhelmed, such as a list of calming activities or a supportive friend to talk to.

What are some techniques to calm nerves?

Techniques to calm nerves include deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, visualization, and practicing mindfulness or meditation. It’s important to find what works best for you and make it a regular part of your routine.

How do I calm down when feeling overwhelmed?

When feeling overwhelmed, it can be helpful to step back and take a break. Try taking a few deep breaths, going for a walk, or engaging in a relaxing activity like taking a bath or reading a book. It’s also important to prioritize self-care and seek support from a therapist or counselor if needed.

What are some effective ways to calm down from a panic attack?

Effective ways to calm down from a panic attack include practicing deep breathing exercises, engaging in physical activity, using grounding techniques, and seeking support from a therapist or counselor. It’s important to have a plan in place for when you experience a panic attack, including identifying triggers and coping strategies.

How do I calm down when feeling sad or depressed?

When feeling sad or depressed, it’s important to prioritize self-care and seek support from a therapist or counselor. Engaging in activities that bring you joy, such as spending time with loved ones or pursuing a hobby, can also be helpful. It’s important to remember that it’s okay to ask for help and that there is no shame in seeking support.

Hopefully I’ve given you enough suggestions for a wide array of circumstances. From being at home, or a place where you can’t necessarily bring “stuff” to calm yourself down, these can work for you.

It’s just important to use what works for you.

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