Have you ever found yourself reacting to things your children do in a way you don't much like? Like shouting at them or getting into an argument that leaves you feeling upset at your behaviour?
Here's some quick tips about getting out of that situation.
I use the term MAMA:
Mindset Adjustment, &
The first thing is, you need to recognise that you're in that moment - and sometimes it's only afterwards that we can do that because the emotions are so strong and carry us away in the heat of the moment. This is something I work with coaching clients on - recognising the things that trigger them.
Recognising the signs early enough gets better with practice.
If you have recognised it - well done.
Once you recognise it - pause it.
Take a few deep breaths, count to ten, just pause. Deep breathing helps to reset our nervous system which has been pumped up with adrenaline and settle back towards a calmer state of mind.
Next, think about what your objective is and how it might be achieved in a calmer way - consider it.
Those three points cover the Mindset Adjustment.
In order to take Mindful, or Meaningful, Action we then need to break the tension.
One of the easiest ways to do this is moving your body - dancing or jumping up and down on the spot, anything. I keep an upbeat song on my phone that I can flick on quickly if needed. Moving our bodies helps to disperse the adrenaline that triggers the 'fight or flight' response so that we can become calmer and more relaxed again.
Once the tension's broken it should be easier to deal with the situation and achieve your objective in a way that makes both of you feel better - mindful action.
These quick steps don't take very long - imagine a scenario where you're trying to get your toddler into the pushchair to collect the older child from school - you could spend ages wrestling or cajoling and feel stressed about it, or you could take a few deep breaths, crazy-dance with the toddler for a couple of minutes until you're both laughing and promise more dancing when you get home from the school run (keep that promise - it's good for all of you).
Which one sounds more fun for all involved?
MAMA - Mindset Adjustment / Mindful Action - give it a go!
Of course, if you frequently find yourself overstretched and reacting in a way you don't like, it might be time to think about whether you're getting enough of the things you need in your life - whether you feel replenished or exhausted. That's another area that I work on a lot with my clients so if you'd like to explore that just let me know.