If tensions are getting high, if your kid just did that thing for the 100th time that you asked them not to do, forget to do or insist they are not doing or already did, this is your clue to take a step back. While you are balancing work calls, making lunches, signing a form they forgot to tell you about, your necklace just broke, the dogs need to go out, its trash day, gotta cancel their dental appointments, extra practice is added for sports, on and on and on. So, What can we do so we don't explode? How?
Allow yourself to be mindful enough to notice your body changes. Is your heart racing, breath becoming faster, how is the tone of your voice and your volume? Is your mind racing, do you feel a bit like a volcano ready to explode? It can be all, any or a few of these signs that you're getting ready to react rather than respond with the potential to make things a whole lot more dramatic and WORSE!
So this is a good time to Practice the STOP Skill.
- Stop what is happening, your words and actions, give it a beat!
- Take a Step back, literally! Even if that means leaving the room, "I'm frustrated and am taking a step out before I make it worse. I will be back" is something I did this morning.
- Observe what is going on in your body, the room, your kids face and body language. How can you be more effective and respond rather than react. Remember this is someone you love, a member of your nest! Do what you need to do, deep breathing, folding your body over to hang towards your toes, do another task, something to bring you back down to baseline.
- Proceed Mindfully ... Get back out there and make amends with your kiddo. We are big huggers in my house so we hug it out. Say what was yours and explain things in a calm manner. Also, make sure the expectation is explained clearly to your kiddo.
It is hard to find our patience at this time of year AND we can use skills to keep the damage minimal. We are so close to being at the end of the school year, right the ship for a strong finish my friends.
You Got This!