What does this have to do with my kids' big emotions?
Staying calm during a storm of emotions is HARD work. Asking you to feel compassion for your child while they rage and reel against you... well, it can be downright excruciating at times.
If you don't find a way to "put your oxygen mask on first" - these skills will be almost impossible to follow through on.
A question I always ask parents is: "What is the one activity you enjoy doing that shifts your mood for 24 to 48 hours?"
Before you pick your activity, do a body scan.
Our bodies often tell us what is going on with our parasympathetic nervous system. These kid blow-ups might be putting you into "fight or flight" - so, to calm down, you'll need to "fight or flight". Obviously I'm not suggesting you ACTUALLY do those things - but, get to a gym and do the work your body wants you to.
If your arms, shoulders and neck are tight, you might consider trying some boxing while you're at the gym or try a Flow or Vinyasa yoga class. Legs? Get running, hop on the elliptical, skip.
If your body feels loose but your mind or spirit are low - go to the activities you know will fill that need - singing, meditating, praying, quilting, laughing with a friend.
Once you find the right activity for yourself, see how you can fit it in more regularly - and I mean about 4 to 5 times a week.
We can't schedule our kids' meltdowns, so, without a pretty regular self-care practice, you might not be all that successful at staying present and calm during the moments of big feelings.
Share in the comments the activity you think will help YOU to unwind! Maybe we can make a list together to help the parents out who might be still searching for that "right" activity.
You can do this - I promise. It's hard work, but the results are... well, beautiful. Your home will be calmer. You will feel more connected to your kids. You will feel proud of yourself.
Doesn't that sound good?
And, if you need a bit of extra help to get here, remember I am here to help, just send me a DM/PM and we can set up a session!
Kathleen is an anti-bullying specialist, a conflict coach, a teacher, mom, wife, daughter, sister, friend...