Helping Your Child Move from Chaos to Calm


Fall has always been a favorite season of mine. What’s not to love about the leaves falling, pumpkin everything, and that Nashville heat giving us a break? Nashville has so much to do this time of year and my family is here for it! If you need some ideas for some great kid friendly outings click here. The parks are a great way to get some energy out and meet new families.

Helping Your Child Move from Chaos to CalmNow, as much as I love fall and being outdoors, the crowds that come with fall festivities can cause our little ones to become overstimulated resulting in us trying to manage a meltdown. If you have ever been in a situation like this, you know how quickly it can all escalate…for everyone involved.

When this happens, the first thing to do is to recognize that your child is most likely dysregulated and needs to feel safe. Once they feel safe and grounded, any conversations that need to be had will be tolerated much more easily.
Below are 5 simple ways to help your child go from chaos to calm:

1. Take your child out of the physical location of the meltdown. For example, if you are at a crowded indoor location, take your child outside or to a quiet room. Never underestimate a change of scenery.

2. Give your child something cold to drink. Carbonated beverages are great, but water works well too. Cold is key!

3. Place something cold on the back of your child’s neck. As you can see here, there is a theme of engaging the senses.

4. Help them breathe. Many times, when we are dysregulated, our breath becomes shallow. Helping our little ones (or ourselves) breathe deeply and slowly will calm the nervous system.

5. Lastly, when you speak to them get at eye level. This communicates that you are with them and creates a sense of safety.

These exercises can be taught to our kids so that as they get older, they have their own “toolbox” of coping skills. What other coping skills have you found that we can add to the toolbox? We would love to hear from you!

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Christy Hughes
Hi there! I'm Christy. I'm a mama to two beautiful girls and a rescue pup, who has been mistaken more than once for an Ewok. I was born in rural East Tennessee but grew up in Southern Illinois. After college, I moved to Nashville, where I met my husband in 2002. We now live in Murfreesboro and have loved raising our family here. After six years as a stay-at-home mom, I finished my MA in Professional Counseling at Liberty University and returned to work as a trauma therapist. Balancing a graduate program and parenting young children taught me a lot about the gift of being human and having limits. As a therapist, it is a sacred space to hold the stories that have never been spoken before. As they are shared, witnessing shame fall away and healing begin is an honor. I hope to encourage other women to share their stories and give themselves the compassion they need through this journey called life and motherhood. I live life and motherhood through a Christian worldview. My hope is to encourage other women in their relationship with Christ, themselves, and others. In my free time, I love hiking, traveling, camping, writing, and music. I love people and I love to recharge by being alone. I find that I have much more to say on paper than in person. I look forward to sharing the ups and downs of life and motherhood with you! Connect with me on my Facebook Page.


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