Sigh and Release

This is one of the resources accompanying the free 6-week course Self-Care For Frazzled Parents. If you came here from any source other than that course, please register for the course for access to the complete materials and explanations of how to use them to bring more joy to parenting. You can register here.

Sigh and Release is the single most profound tool I know for getting back to a non-frazzled place.

  1. Take a deep breath in
  2. Let it out on a sigh. (Make sure it is an audible sigh using an open vowel like “Ahhhh”.)
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 three times.
  4. Shake a hand
  5. Shake the other hand
  6. Shake a leg
  7. Shake the other leg
  8. Shake your whole body


Those 8 steps are the most powerful tool I know for taking care of yourself when you have no time. The combination of breath, sound, and movement triggers release. If you don’t have time for all 8 steps, the first 3 alone often help.

It is important to make a vocal sound while exhaling. Letting the sigh happen with a vowel sound sets up vibrations in your body that don’t happen when you simply exhale. Those vibrations start to shake stress loose.

The amazing thing about this Sigh and Release exercise is that you don’t need to know what information you need to move out when you do this. Our bodies know at some subconscious level what we can release.