Stop, Relax & Release Technique Part 1

building better relationships healthy parent knowing yourself parenting advice parenting coach

The Stop, Relax, and Release technique is a valuable tool parents can use to pause, center themselves, and respond to challenging situations with their kids.

StopWhen faced with a situation where your child is not listening or refusing to cooperate, the first step is to stop. This pause allows you to break the cycle of immediate reaction. It's easy to react out of anger or frustration, but taking a moment to stop can make a world of difference. Instead of reacting impulsively, you give yourself a chance to respond thoughtfully.

Relax: The next step is to relax. Parenting can be incredibly stressful, and it's common to get triggered by your child's behavior. However, reacting from a place of tension and irritation often escalates the situation disconnecting the relationship with your child. By taking the time to consciously relax, you can reduce the emotional charge of the moment. Take a deep breath, turn your attention inside and actively finding the spots in your body where your muscles are tense. Once you feel the sensation, sit still and observe the sensation while you gently release the constriction in each muscle. (Refer to Words to Describe Body Sensations Blog)

ReleaseThe final step involves releasing and letting go of your emotional tension and expectations. Understand that your child's actions may not always align with your desires or instructions. Releasing the need to control every situation can lead to better outcomes. Instead of forcing compliance, consider shifting your focus. Ask yourself, “Is anything life threatening or even bad happening right now?” Keep your focus on your body, your breath and what this is triggering inside of you, will change the patterns that keep coming up. Allow natural consequences to address the issue, providing there are no safety concerns.

Incorporating this technique into the way you parent can lead to several positive outcomes:

Improved CommunicationBy staying aware, composed and relaxed, you create an environment where open and constructive communication is more likely to occur. Your child is more likely to listen when they feel heard.

Reduced ConflictThis approach reduces the likelihood of power struggles, tantrums, and arguments, leading to a more harmonious family dynamic. It's a way to de-escalate potentially volatile and damaging relational situations.

Empathy and UnderstandingWhen you stop, relax, and release, you are more likely to be able to recognize, accept and empathize with your child's perspective. This fosters a deeper connection and helps your child feel understood and validated.

Modeling Emotional Regulation: Children learn by observing their parents' behavior. By demonstrating emotional regulation, you help teach your child to do the same. This valuable life skill will help them be better equipped to handle their emotions in the future.

In conclusion, the Stop, Relax, and Release technique can break harmful patterns and old beliefs allowing more patience and presence with your kids. Stopping, taking a step back to relax any uncomfortable feelings in your body, so you can release and let go, will help you be the parent your kids need you to be. Your child will benefit from your emotional regulation and your ability to create a nurturing and understanding relationship, and a peaceful environment at home.