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Parenting Information: What Not to do When You are
Feeling Angry and Frustrated!

I yelled at my daughter for the first time yesterday.  It felt awful.  In fact, I felt so bad that I proceeded to yell at my husband for not rescuing me from my own bad mood.  Then I felt even worse.  Ugh.
These moments of anger and frustration will definitely happen.  Children push our buttons.  If you have more than one child, it’s probably the case that one of them tends to set you off even more often than another.  It’s what they do.  It’s up to us, as the adults, to learn how to deal with it in healthy appropriate ways.

The first key is to notice what triggers you.  We all have specific triggers that we’ve adopted through the years.  Some of our triggers have to do with our basic self-worth issues; some of them stem from unhealthy or dysfunctional patterns that we’ve perpetuated in our lives; often our triggers are simply physical in nature: I’m definitely more on edge when I haven’t slept or eaten well. 

So, over the course of nine years of parenting, I’ve noticed that I tend to get short-tempered when I’m already frustrated with something and my child demands my attention.  That’s exactly what happened yesterday.  I was really mad at myself for not saving a really important file on the computer and I was frantically searching the computer files hoping it would magically appear.  I was already upset and sincerely frustrated when my toddler decided that she wanted me right now.  I don’t know how they know it, but they always seem to know the wrong time to push.  I snapped at her and closed the door and she melted into tears.  Mommy had never snapped like that before.  Ugh.

Okay, so being a conscious parent means that I take responsibility for my behavior.  Things didn’t go as planned yesterday.  I’m going to learn my lesson and learn a new way of being so that the next time I’m already frustrated and I feel myself on that edge, I have some tools in my belt.

  • I’m going to remind myself that my child is more important than my frustration – and I simply refuse take it out on her.
  • I’m going to stop and take three deep breaths to re-center myself and ground myself in my True Nature.
  • I’m going to know when to ask for help before it’s too late.
  • I’m going to recognize my triggers and be aware: if I’m already feeling punchy I’ll cut back on the caffeine.  If I’m already feeling frustrated, I won’t let that feeling take over.  I will re-mind myself of my other choices.
  • I’m going to remember my values: that kindness, compassion and peace are what I look to, not violence.  And even snapping at my sweet baby girl feels violent.

Remember in the heat of the moment that you do have choices.  You don’t have to yell.  Yelling at your child is not the way to deal with your feelings.  You really can rise above the flashes of anger and deal with them in appropriate ways.

By: Shelly Walker



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