75 Calm Down Techniques - Brave Guide
75 Calm Down Techniques

75 Calm Down Techniques

When your child starts to meltdown – whether they are feeling angry, afraid, or just overly emotional, it can be HARD to get them to calm down! There is nothing worse than looking at your child and just not knowing what to do to help them as they scream, tantrum, or cry.

As a parent of 2 (in addition to extra foster kiddos at times) I have learned that it is important to have a lot of calm down tools in my basket when it comes to coping strategies. Keeping things fresh and giving kids choices can make all the difference when it comes to getting things calmed down and under control!

Calm Down Techniques and Ideas

I have put together a list below of 75 calm down strategies. These are all great options, but you will notice that some are more geared towards kids that have sensory issues or that may act out when they get hungry, tired or overstimulated.

One thing I have recently created at my house is a grab bag of calm down strategies. I have printed off all of these ideas, cut them up, and put the slips of paper into a bucket. When one of my kids gets upset, angry, anxious, hyperactive, or just needs a little redirection, I give them the choice to choose one of the slips of paper and do the activity.

Letting them pick makes it feel more like they are in control and less like I am punishing them which can be an important distinction in the midst of a tantrum or outburst! (Control is also a really important issue when dealing with strong willed children or children who have a traumatic past.)

If you want to make your own calm down grab bag, you can find this list in a format that works for printing and cutting in the parenting resource library.

Calm Down Activity Strips

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75 Calm Down Techniques

  1. Shake a Glitter Jar or Bubble Bottle
  2. Read a Book
  3. 5 Senses Scavenger Hunt (Check out the Calm Down Card Deck for instructions)
  4. Count To 20
  5. Squeeze a Stress Ball
  6. Do Infinity Breathing (Here’s an article on Deep Breathing for Kids with Instructions)
  7. Do a page from The Brave Guide to Anger
  8. Talk to a Friend
  9. Jump on a Trampoline
  10. Think of a Happy Memory
  11. Do Dragon Breathing For 1 Minute (Check out the Calm Down Card Deck for instructions)
  12. Do 20 Jumping Jacks
  13. Blow into Your Hands
  14. Clench and Release Your Muscles
  15. Use a Problem-Solving Worksheet (Download for free in the Parenting Resource Library)
  16. Chew Gum
  17. Listen to Music
  18. Do a Puzzle
  19. Blow Bubbles
  20. Do a Word Search
  21. Do Belly Breathing Until You Feel Calm (Here’s an article on teaching kids to do deep breathing)
  22. Put on Noise Reducing Head Phones
  23. Run in Place as Fast as You Can
  24. Go to a Quiet Calm Place
  25. Snuggle a Stuffed Animal
  26. Write in a Journal
  27. Hum or Whistle to Yourself
  28. Go for a Bike Ride
  29. Say the ABCs Backwards
  30. Eat a Snack
  31. Use Deep Breathing Posters to Do Mountain Breathing 
  32. Blow on a Pinwheel
  33. Play with a Fidget Spinner
  34. Sit in a Dark Room
  35. Bounce on a Ball (This hippity hop is my son’s favorite calm down tool!)
  36. Do Some Stretches
  37. Make Faces in a Mirror
  38. Get A Drink of Water
  39. Color a Picture
  40. Squeeze a Pillow as Tight as You Can
  41. Let Someone Brush Your Hair
  42. Have a Dance Party
  43. Use a Weighted Blanket (Make sure to get the correct weight for your child!)
  44. Take a Bubble Bath
  45. Use Lavender Essential Oil
  46. Play with Playdough
  47. Doodle – Alternate Between Light and Heavy Pressure
  48. Write Down Your Worries or Frustrations and Then Tear Up the Paper
  49. Say a Positive Affirmation (Check out my Positive Affirmations Kit)
  50. Play with a Pipe Cleaner
  51. Trace a Calming Word on Your Leg or Arm
  52. Hang Upside Down Off the Couch
  53. Keep a Feather or Balloon Up in The Air by Blowing on It
  54. Take a Shower
  55. Take a Nap
  56. Ask for a Break
  57. Play with Thinking Putty
  58. Play with Legos
  59. Look at Old Pictures
  60. Make a Worry or Angry Monster
  61. Suck on Ice
  62. Put Your Hands in Your Pockets
  63. Do Downward Dog (Check out the Calm Down Card Deck for instructions)
  64. Blow A Marble with A Straw
  65. Do Wall Pushups
  66. Do an ABC Scavenger Hunt (Check out the Calm Down Card Deck for instructions)
  67. Play with A Rubix Cube
  68. Write a Letter or a Story
  69. Ask for a Break
  70. Yell into a Pillow
  71. Balance on One Foot
  72. Pretend You Are Calm Even If You’re Not
  73. Crab Walk
  74. Play Air Guitar or Air Drums
  75. Remember Every Detail You Can About the Most Beautiful Place You Have Every Been

Do you have calm down techniques not listed here that work for you? Leave them in the comments to add to the list!

Printable Calm Down Techniques List (Print & Cut)

Don’t forget to download your print and cut Calm Down Skills list to make your own grab bag of calm down techniques! You can access that printable in the Parenting Resource Library!

Other Articles You Might Like

5 Ways to Calm Tantrums

Teaching Coping Skills to Calm Angry Kids

How to Make a Calm Down Kit

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