Calm – that’s me – on a good day. I always keep calm….
I would love to write yes that’s me CALM, I have that one sussed. The truth is sometimes I do and I amaze myself at my unflapableness and other times it’s not quite there (or anywhere nearby).
So here are my top ten tips to keep calm; particularly while the kids are totally losing it….
BUT REMEMBER….none of us get it right all the time, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t quite manage it…
- Remember their ages, sometimes we can expect too much – a toddler won’t deliberately wind you up, they don’t understand that manipulation, if an older child is misbehaving try and think about why they are behaving as they are; it might be worth asking if something is bothering them?
- Some emotions, such as empathy, often don’t develop until well into the teens so kids just don’t see the world like we do
- Remember when YOU were there; how it felt when your best friend turned against you, you weren’t picked for the team or when someone you loved was ill?
- Be realistic (often a challenge for me); perhaps just trying to squeeze in that extra thing just before the school run, or before bed, is just putting more pressure on
- Use routines and consequences; everyone then knows where they are (and this helps in being consistent)
- Explain things; if things are going to be different tell them. Some children find the change in routine very challenging to handle
- Let them try and resolve a dispute; we don’t need to wade in every time. If you can’t bear it, go somewhere you can’t hear them for a few moments unless all hell breaks loose
- Ask yourself what is the worst that can happen; does it really matter if we are late? The washing up is not done? We have baked beans on toast for tea?
- Breathe from your tummy; this gives you a few moments to calm and refocus. It’s also a great technique to share with the children to help them calm down. I have also found that useful when my asthmatic claims he wants his inhaler and I’m not quite sure he needs it
- Children need time to be children; it can be tempting to do lots of activities, but when they are tired they become grumpy, uncooperative, etc. just let them have time to play and chill out.
And just a final thought…
I notice if I don’t look after myself my parenting skills suffer – so eat properly, get out in the fresh air and take a break now and again even if it is a flop down for a bit while they watch some television!
How do you keep calm when your kids are kicking off? Do let us know below.
This is our regular Tuesday Tips for Parenting guest post by Beckie Whitehouse from Be Confident Coaching.
Photos courtesy of Microsoft Clipart.