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Anger Management


Dr. Stephanie Margolese (author of many of our books and of the anger management strategies for The Tiger in my chest) discusses how to use 3 types of anger thermometers for different age groups in this wonderful post with downloadable printables. This is such a wonderful resource for teachers, health professionals, and parents! To download these printable pages, click on the thermometers and you will be taken to her post where she shares in details how to use each thermometer and offers additional information and suggestions. 

My emotional remote control.jpg

A visual reminder that we control our emotions. The remote allows us to remember some re-setting steps to calm ourselves until we can decide how we want to react to a situation. This is how we change our emotional channel.

- Talk about who controls your emotions and try to find examples of how you can bring yourself back to a calm place so that you can control your emotions again.
- Write down some of your own ideas in the blank spaces before assembling.
- Leave the remote in an area where it can serve as a visual reminder.
- Have your child self-control by giving them the remote when the situation demands it.

Think of different situations when emotions get out of control. Panic or fear takes over and we find ourselves unable to get out of whatever situation has put us there.
The idea is for you to use this tool to help your child come up with a simple 4 step plan for de-escalation.

- High moments of stress when faced with new experiences.
- Panic at moments when our feeling of safety is gone (dropping off your kid at day care?).
- An allergy management plan that you can share with caregivers and school.
- An anger management process to bring the child comfort and the ability to self-soothe...
Write it in a way that clearly indicates the proper sequence of action steps. Look at the sample provided if you need ideas...

Down the ladder we go.jpg
Down the ladder 2.jpg
My anger triggers.jpg

A great tool to talk about anger triggers and steps to regain our emotional balance. Use specific examples and come up with concrete steps that validate the emotion while allowing children to understand that they controls their actions. 

- Use in a classroom as a class activity to talk about appropriate ways to deal with anger.
- Use with children who have clear patterns and may be able to identify them with some guided help.
- Use as a family to talk about how we all get angry and yet must all act appropriately to not let this anger consume us.

Breathing like a fish.jpg
Take a break and breathe.jpg

Deep breathing helps children relax and focus their thoughts. It can help them deal with anger by calming down and deciding the next appropriate step.

-Talk about times when this type of breathing can be helpful and be as specific as possible, especially if patterns of anger occur.
- Explain how the more you practice breathing, the easier it will be.
- Keep the visual reminders in places where they can have multiple effects or close to anxiety and anger triggers.
- Practice when child is feeling relaxed.
- Come up with a phrase that can be used to encourage the child to breathe.

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