Terri the Tassie Devil isn’t the only kid that gets angry and sometimes lets loose at their friends or family.
Last Tuesday, when Terri was over at a friend's Kelly’s house, Terri was losing the game and lost his temper, yelled at Kelly and smashed the board.
Kelly was upset and isn’t talking to Terri anymore, and as a result Terri got in trouble at home. Terri felt bad for upsetting Kelly, and a bit embarrassed about acting that way.
It doesn’t mean Terri is a bad person; in fact he cares a lot about people, and is great fun to be around.
Some people get angry more easily, or can act more impulsively. There is a lot going on and it’s easy to get overwhelmed, stressed out, or lose control.
Anger is a normal emotion for anyone to have, and there is nothing wrong with feeling angry sometimes. However, when we don’t know how to handle our anger, our behaviour can cause issues, hurt others or ourselves.
So, it’s important that we learn the skills to notice how we’re feeling and then manage how we react.
Terri lays out his yoga mat in a quiet space and practices the following exercise regularly. That way when a situation arises unexpectedly, he thinks back to sitting on his mat and goes over the steps.
The first step is to STOP.
Notice that something or someone is making you feel disappointed or angry. How does it feel in your body? Your blood might be pumping, you turn red or get sweaty, or feel your muscles tense.
Don’t react yet, just stop and take note of how you are feeling.
The second step is to BREATHE.
You can do this on the spot or it’s ok to walk away from the situation to somewhere quiet.
Deep breaths can help calm you down. Take long deep breaths through your nose right into your belly, then breathe all the way out through your mouth.
Or, count to 10, tensing and releasing your muscles as you go along.
The third step is to THINK.
When you’re feeling calmer, “What can I do?” Consider the consequences of ways you might react.
Are you ready to speak to the person? What is your best option?
The more you practice these basic skills, the better you will become at managing your strong emotions.
Here is a great yoga sequence to practice to help calm down.
Tree pose - Forward bend - Downward dog - Cobra - Childs pose