I bet you read the title of this post, looked at the photo and thought something along the lines of, “Is this chic seriously trying to tell me a beach ball is all I need to stay calm when my child is having a level 10 melt down?… Go sell crazy somewhere else sister. I ain’t buying it”.
Don’t worry, the beach ball photos are from my momtastic post
this week – all about our favorite way to burn off some steam indoors.
As for maintaining your zen – I’ve got back up for that, a collection of wonderful posts on how to keep your cool when the kids have completely lost theirs. Before I get there, though, let me back up a little and explain why I’m posting on this topic.
Over the summer I gave myself a little break from studying up on the business of parenting. Now that it’s fall, preschool and toddler group are in full swing and I’m once again talking with educators, attending child development seminars, and reading up on parenting issues. In doing so I’m noticing that regardless of the topic (building self-esteem, fostering positive sibling relationships, promoting good behavior, etc.), the same advice keeps resurfacing: remain calm, implement positive discipline vs. punishment, place value on effort and intrinsic rewards, and teach emotional intelligence.
My goal for the coming year is to learn as much as I can about these subjects. Since I learn best by teaching, I’m also going to try to share what I find with all of you – starting today.
One of the things I struggle with most as a parent is remaining calm in the face of open defiance by my children (mostly just my 3 year old now but I know it’s just a matter of time for the 16 month old). But I know, because I’ve heard it over and over, that it’s one of my most important jobs as a mom. Doing so not only helps my children calm down themselves, it also models positive conflict resolution, builds their feelings of self-worth, and strengthens the entire family unit.
But how to actually do it? Here are some posts I’ve found to be tremendously helpful:
- Seeing Tantrums as Distress, Not Defiance – For a healthy dose of perspective.
- Thought Replacement Therapy – While not actually a post on dealing with tantrums, I’ve still found it to be extremely useful. When I find myself thinking, “C is acting like a maniac”, I try to replace it with something like, “A year ago I was worried C would have trouble coming out of his shell – he’s really becoming a confident and expressive kid”. Obviously this doesn’t always work but it’s another nice way to try to put things in perspective.
- Keeping Calm When You Want to Explode (via Not Just Cute) – This post is a huge lesson on self-examination. It goes into great detail on how to really figure out your own melt down triggers as well as techniques to diffuse them.
- How to Stop Yelling at Your Kids… Or at Least Try to – This post, as well as it’s follow-up, is one mom’s very truthful (and helpful) account of the yelling that goes on at her house and what she did to stop it.
- Keeping Your Cool When the Kids Lose Theirs – A wonderful round up of four more posts on the topic. I love that a lot of the focus here is on remembering empathy.
That’s what I’ve got for you, now what do you have for me? I’d really love your feedback. Do you struggle with this? What have you found that works? Please share in the comments below.