Do You Say “Tomorrow I’ll do better”, Yet by 8am You’re Yelling at Your Children?
Most parents put their hand up and say, “Yes, me too!” Exhausted from a day of nagging, yelling and demanding your children do things faster, better, or do something at all, you flop into bed and wish for more peace in home. With your head churning, you long for a better way to do things and hope for a little courage so you can try harder tomorrow.
While no parent is exempt from this pressure, it’s especially true for those who are in a complex family arrangement; those who co-parent, or parent beyond separation, divorce, or some form of family breakdown. The split family or blended family places extreme pressure on parents, and none more so than the solo parent.
What is Conscious Parenting?
Great parenting is not out of reach, it’s not even that difficult — it takes one key element to lift it from mediocre to great. It requires you to be aware, or rephrased as parent consciously.
Be aware of how you handle the day to day mundane repetition that is your child’s training ground.
Every day is simply a progression of tiny moments that are all strung together over the course of 24 hours. If you feel overwhelmed, angry, resentful, or even plain exhausted, it helps to remember that the most important part of your day is right now.
It’s not what will happen in 10 minutes, half an hour, or even in two hours time; it’s not important what has gone before you, previous days, weeks, or even years; it’s only important what you decide right in this very moment.
If you get frustrated that your children seem unable to get themselves ready for school on time in the morning, choose how you will handle this repetition instead of continuing with your frustration and emotional outbursts.
To yell at them, does little to lead your family in a strong and positive example, instead you reinforce to them the feelings of being out of control and powerlessness. When this becomes a daily ritual in your home, it’s not surprising their behaviour will reflect this frustration.
Quick Tips to Help you Begin to Parent Consciously
The next time you’re about to raise your voice and yell — STOP.
Simply take a deep breath and remind yourself that you are the parent and it is your responsibility to lead your family.
As you climb into bed, while you hold the wish for greater peace inside your home, take the time to reflect on how you might remind yourself to stop reacting and start responding to every little moment – the ones that are strung together to make up a day.
When you trip up and you hear yourself yelling before 8am in the morning in sheer frustration; don’t give up — stop mid-sentence and say to yourself, “let’s try again …”
In a calm, strong, and effective tone, continue to remind your children (without nagging) and do nothing more. This conscious choice encourages and empowers you for the next moment, and then the next, and next, and so on.
It helps to have some practical solutions, but even the most efficient and effective strategies won’t help if you carry them out while you harbour inner resentment, anger, frustration, or even disengagement from life.
It’s most important to understand you first influence your family in every moment through who you are being, then second, through what you are doing.
So take some time to think about who you are being to children.
Then take some more time to really think about what you are doing with your children.
Just this small process of taking time to consciously think about who you are as a parent, and how you’re parenting, will bring about a big change in your life. Leading your children to greatness one seemingly insignificant repetitious step after another, each and every day, is how we become great parents!