Did you ever wonder why you feel so much better after belting out a few tunes in the car?
Or singing along with the music in the supermarket? (Or, is that just me?)
Singing is a form of controlled breathing due to the way it lengthens our exhalations (breath out).
It slows down our breathing, sending a message to our nervous system that we are “safe”.
Singing also stimulates the ventral vagus nerve via the vocal cords, bringing our “social engagement” system online.
This puts a brake on our sympathetic nervous system, reducing stress and anxiety.
That means that we start to feel more calm, content and connected with the world around us – including our kids!
As a parent, if we start to feel a bit agitated, we can use singing or even humming to calm ourselves down.
We can invite our kids to sing with us, then their ventral vagus will be stimulated too, helping them to feel calmer.
Singing together with our kids can also be fun, giving kids an extra boost of connection and safety.
🎶 Sometimes a “question and answer” type song can work really well.
🎶 Making the song silly can help to get kids’ engagement and participation.
🎶 And if it elicits laughter, then it is further reducing stress, as well as releasing “feel good” endorphins!