HOW TO BECOME A CALM PARENT
If you’re a parent you’ve definitely googled “how can I be a calmer parent” or “how can I be a more relaxed parent?” Or you’ve at least thought it to yourself.
Having children causes tremendous personal growth. They teach us how to be selfless, caring and kind. They teach us humility, because who else has had those beautiful, intense moments shattered by ‘mom, I found a booger.’
They also bring out a dark side. One that maybe you didn’t realize you had. It’s scary when you come face to face with it. And it usually happens when you’re sleep deprived and not prepared for it.
Maybe it’s a passing thought at 3 am when you’re holding a screaming baby and it flits across your brain ‘I’m actually close to throwing my child across the room.” It’s horrifying and you wonder how it could even happen.
Or, maybe, the dark side of you rears its ugly head when you are at the end of your already frayed rope and your kids have been fighting all morning and you lose it. Not just a ‘stop it!’ or ‘be quiet!’ but a full blown ‘can’t you two shut up, I can’t stand it anymore, SHUT UP!’
It leaves you wondering who you are. And sometimes, I’ve even wished I’d never had kids so I didn’t have to see that ugly side of myself.
But, perhaps, there’s beauty in it too. To learn that every single human being on this planet is made up of so many layers, and some of them are not so pretty.
You might be wondering, ‘how CAN I be calmer?’
Where there’s a will- there’s a way.
Embrace The Insanity Of Children
I still fight with this every single day. I act like my kids should be quiet and not spill stuff or make a huge mess. And why? Why do I do this to myself.
Having children is complete insanity. It’s repetition (of questions and actions and thoughts), it’s chaos, it’s beautiful, it’s LIFE.
On the days where I decide to embrace the insanity, I have a lot more fun. I laugh more and don’t get worried over the messes and clutter.
Let Go Of Your Expectations
What happens when you expect something to go a certain way and it doesn’t? Usually, you’re not thrilled. Dealing with kids is crazy town. Ditch your expectations and start each day with and INTENTION instead of an EXPECTATION.
Intend to have a good day, intend to be calmer, intend to laugh more and react with kindness.
Take Time Alone (Quietly)
Kids are extremely intense on all of our senses. They are constantly hanging off you, yelling for no reason, acting wild, fighting or making a mess. And really, why wouldn’t they be, they’re kids!
It’s a barrage on all of your senses. Take some when you can to have some quiet moments. It really helps you to be a calmer parent when you come back to the chaos.
RELATED: 7 Reasons To Be A Stay At Home Mom (and 7 reasons not to)
Get A Hobby
Find something that brings you joy and do it as often as you can. Whether it’s something physical like running or yoga or something creative like painting or crafting.
Don’t act like it’s some silly thing you kind of like to do. It’s not silly and it will keep you sane.
Take Things Less Seriously
This is something I struggle with everyday. But I’m getting better! When is the last time you laughed your head off with your kids? Sometimes when I stop thinking about my neverending to-do list or put my frickin phone down, I tune in to how funny and sweet my kids are being.
Yeah, the house is a disaster and there’s a mountain of laundry. But you’re safe, you’ve got food to eat and a roof over your head. Laugh with your kids and be grateful for what you have.
Say ‘Yes’ As Often As You Can
I love to say no. It’s my go to answer for anything my kids ask. Why? Because it’s become a habit. If you do the same, I challenge to ask yourself why you’re saying no to certain things.
Of course, I still say no to things that are important and warrant a no. But the little things? A big fat YES.
I want to wear my pajamas to the grocery store! – sure kid!
I want a purple cup not a green cup! –why not!
We need to pull all of the blankets out of the closet to build a fort! – do it!
They won’t be small forever. One day, their wants will be a lot harder to say yes to (like borrowing the car to go to a party) so say yes to their sweet and innocent wants and save yourself the trouble of a fight or argument.
Always Question- Never Accuse
It’s never as it seems. Even if it seems cut and dried, always ask what happened in a non accusatory way when your kids have done something that seems bad. It’ll help you remain calm to take those extra few seconds to calmly ask what happened before pointing the finger of blame.
You won’t always know how to control your anger with your kids. Or, even if you KNOW how, you won’t be able to. Because, well, the whole human aspect. Don’t dwell on what you’ve done and feel sick about it for days. Kids are resilient, they bounce back so fast. What’s important is that you do your best to repair the damage, learn from your mistakes and FORGIVE YOURSELF.
No one else can do that for you. It’s up to you.
Exercising is so so so important to your physical AND mental health. It cause a release of endorphins, it makes you feel strong and accomplished. It can help you be a calmer parent. Take your frustrations out by pounding the pavement, lifting some heavy ass weights or doing some super zen yoga. It will truly help you be a calmer parent.
What To Do If You Lose It
Sit down with your kids in a circle. Hold their hands. Look in their eyes. Go around the circle and say something you love about each of them and ask them to do the same. Hug them, hold them close and always apologize. You’re human❤
RELATED: What To Do After You Yell At Your Kids
CALM PARENTING BOOKS
The 5 Love Languages Of Children
From Chaos To Calm (ADHD and other behavioral problems)
CALM PARENTING PODCASTS
Unruffled: Respectful Parenting
CALM PARENTING FREE RESOURCES
Did you find anything on this list to help you become a calmer parent? If you have any other suggestions for other parents, let us know in the comments!