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Stress Reducing Strategies

It's beginning to look a lot like that season!  Snowy weather, holiday lights, smells of yummy food, and not to mention the holiday concerts, gatherings, and celebrations!  It all sounds so wonderful, but can also be so stressful!  So, when you feel a little overwhelmed, feel free to try some of the "stress reducing" strategies that your Elementary (or Middle/High School) student may know.   

Here's wishing you a joy-filled, relaxing holiday season!
 
Pizza breathing (or brownie, chocolate chip cookie, or whatever comes out of a piping hot oven that smells good!)  

Smell the pizza (or other yummy, hot food), softly blow to cool it off.  Repeat 3-5 times, slowly. 
 
 
Rainbow breathing (picture provided by Elementary student)

Place your arms at your sides and slowly breathe in while reaching up over your head, creating a rainbow arch.  (If you really want to decrease your stress, try visualizing a rainbow in your mind, hear the soft rain, feel the sun on your skin.) 
 
Starfish breathing (picture provided by Elementary student.  Idea shared by Mrs. Rickards, Elementary Art Teacher) 

Hold either hand out, start at the base of your hand, slowly breathe in while tracing up the side of your hand, and then trace around and down your finger, while slowly blowing out.  Repeat.  (if you want to visualize being on a beach, that never hurts either!) 
 
SELF-control (in the spirit of the season!) 

Meet ELF, the dog!  He is showing great self-control!  If he can sit there, looking at that yummy treat on his nose, you can show self-control as well!  When you feel like you just might lose it, think of ELF and smile (it's a new kind of dog therapy!) 
 
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Melinda McCool, Superintendent
10 West Academy Street
McGraw, NY 13101
P: (607)836-3636
www.mcgrawschools.org