If there’s one thing that I struggle with a lot, its patients. Generally speaking, I’m someone who reacts fast, and expects the same from others. Now, I know that some people need to think more before reacting (and in many situations its actually better than my nonchalant spontaneity) but if you have kids then you know, that the simple action of putting the shoes on can take up to 15 minutes. Or more. And that sometimes your patients just can’t take it anymore!
Yet kids are predictable. They learn, and while learning they have the need of trying new things. They learn the rules of our society, the rules of the home they live in. They learn how things work. And they learn not only by imitation, but also by trial and error. So a lot of times, what might seem like a very bad idea to us, parents, for them is simply a way of checking how things work.
And it’s predictable that they’ll take their time. They won’t always listen. They’ll try doing things their way. But for us, parents, staying patient in these moments isn’t always easy. For sure it isn’t always easy for me !
Therefore it’s illogical to get impatient or irritated (but are we always logical? Nope.)
But knowing that, can save our sanity! Because it lets us understand that our kids are not really trying to win a contest in driving their parents crazy, they just try to understand the very complex world we live in!
Still, I think it’s tough to stay patient as a parent. Although it is worth trying to stay calm because the more upset and tense we get, the more upset and misbehaving our kids might get.
So if you too find it difficult to stay calm, if you’ve been repeating the same thing for ages, if you feel like your child is being ridiculous and is making simple things complicated, and if you are getting angry and impatient before you even had breakfast, here are my tips for staying calm and patient that may help you:
1.Remember that your kids:
– Are constantly learning by trial and error.
– Hear “no” so many times, that they start to ignore it for their own sake.
(so instead of saying : “stop running”, try saying: “please walk” )
– Need to try on their own how things work (including how you work!)
– Their coordination isn’t fully developed so it’s not really their fault that they spill the milk!
2. Repeat: it’s just a phase, it’ll pass.
If you tend to think that this situation will never change, then you live in a permanent state of stress and irritation. But if you realize that this situation is just a phase,a moment in your life that’ll pass, then you can feel calmer, more patient and less stressed.
3. Count to 10 and breathe.
Breathing helps your body to relax, so take in three deep breaths before raising your voice. It may help you stay calm and speak calm.
4. Try to remember what are you grateful for.
Research show that you can’t stay stressed and irritated while you feel grateful. So try thinking about at least one thing that you’re grateful for at that particular moment.
Now I’m not saying I’m always a patient parent now, but realizing these things about my kids, and using the above techniques to calm me down, did really help me a lot.
And what are your ways to stay calm as a parent?