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Stuffed Toy Breathing:
1. Place a stuffed toy on your belly.
2. Take a deep inhale for 3 seconds and watch the stuffed toy move away from the body.
3. Exhale for 5 seconds and watch the stuffed toy return closer to the body.
4. Repeat 2 more times.
Mindfulness Therapies have been found to be effective in improving the mental, emotional, social and physical well-being of young people. One finding in the mindfulness literature is that focusing on the present is helpful in dealing with strong feelings.
The young clients of the Center expressed feeling relaxed and calm after practicing this exercise when they felt overwhelmed.
Stuffed Toy Squeezing:
1. Hug or hold your stuffed toy.
2. Squeeze it as tight as possible for 10 seconds.
3. Notice your body sensations as you are squeezing the toy.
4. After 10 seconds, abruptly release the hug or grip.
5. Notice your body sensations of your body as it relaxes. How are they different from when you were tensed up?
6. Repeat 2 more times.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation has been found in meta-studies to be as effective as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The young clients of the Center expressed feeling relaxed and calm after practicing this and other exercises when feeling overwhelmed.
Keywords: Mindfulness; Children; Support; Breathing
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