Tuesday, January 27, 2009

RAD regulation

We have been talking a lot at home about regulating yourself. I told the boys we have a thermostat on our wall to regulate the temperate in our home. If it gets to hot the thermostat causes the furnace to go back off. If it gets to cold it comes back on so that our house stays at a fairly even temperature.

When our emotions become out of control we begin to get "hot". Here are some ways to regulate yourself. Drop your shoulders. When we are tense our shoulders come up. I do this often during the day and am surprised how often they are up! Slow down your breathing. When we are tense we begin breathing faster. Breathing more slowly and deeply provides more oxygen. I have a short little song I sing to myself so I stop talking.

In church on Sunday I looked up to see Bear toe to toe with another high school student on the front row. He had made fists at his side and was looking him in the eye. Apparently Bear had laid his things down to sit there and walked away. This boy had moved his things and sat in the chair. Bear was willing to fight him standing on the front row of our 500 something congregation. My husband was home sick with a sinus infection. I immediately started walking down the aisle motioning for him to come. He just kept saying over and over "He is in my spot and won't move." He finally came to me and I began to lightly rub his back and work on calming him. I told him just to let it go and find a new chair. Just then our youth pastor walked up and asked him to sit with him. We finally got him calmed and he sat down. I went back to my seat. A few minutes later Bear turned around and mouthed the words "thank you". We talked afterwards about regulating yourself and what to do when you are feeling so angry.

I don't know if we can get to a place where he uses self regulation but I have to admit it helps me. I make sure he sees me doing it during tense times. You can also throw in a little EMDR. I sometimes tap my legs or arms (with them crossed) left right left right. This is physically calming to a brain. I have a squishy ball I found at Bed,Bath and Beyond for $1. I use it before grad school exams. I squeeze left right left right. I also chew gum when I am tense. Find ways to regulate yourself and practice them. Talk with your child if they are old enough about what you are doing and have them practice when they are not upset. If you can catch them before they go into a rage they may be willing to use them and then deserve a sweet caramel or a little ice cream and a snuggle! Have a healing day!

1 comment:

Karen Deborah said...

Oh lawdy if Ic ould learn this myself, I have a very fast hot button especially with one of these girls. She knows right where it is and just how to push it.