What's bothering you, my dear?


There's a famous quote from the book 'Newbie's guide to Positive Parenting' by Rebecca Eanes,
"Positive Parenting starts with me."
Though I've read this quote many times, but I recently unleashed its true meaning.
I've written a couple of blogs on yelling earlier, and this is my third one on the hot topic.
Parents! Please stop yelling and start understanding kids
How to make our home a No Yelling area
Even after writing these 2 blogs; I failed several times when it came to applying those strategies in the heat of the moment. The reason was I was so overwhelmed by anger, that those strategies rarely came to my mind.  And I was on a yelling train. 

So I dig deep inside to find "How can positive parenting start with me?"

This blog shares no bookish knowledge that I've acquired over 2+ years. Rather, it is filled with my own experiences and learning therefrom, which helped me at the right moment.

Yelling at kids is not instant, but is actually the outburst of our anger which gets accumulated inside us due to several reasons; kids' misbehavior being one of those, but not the only reason. 

I observed myself and found that there were 3 levels before I burst out on my child:

Level 1: Inception
This is the start of irritation. This irritation is right inside us, but at a very small level. It can be due to several reasons like hunger, or tiredness, or shortness of time to reach somewhere, or not getting enough me-time, or mental stress in family/office.

Level 2: Accumulation
If the irritation at level 1 is not taken care of, then it goes to level 2. Similar kind of irritable moments start accumulating inside us. It is actually the time we’re not shouting, but we're in the process of getting filled up with several irritable moments, that surely are testing our patience.

Level 3: Outburst
It is the outburst of our anger when we’re completely filled up with irritation, and we need something or someone to vent out all the anger inside us. And usually kids are the easiest target, because they’re little.

So, kids are not always responsible for our anger. The outbursts are backed by accumulation of several irritable moments. If we start looking at our anger sparks just when they’re building up and then learn how to diffuse those, we would be in better control of our minds when our kids do something we don’t like.

Managing irritations at different levels

Level 1
It is my experience that irritation is easy to manage at level 1, by asking a simple question to self  

“What’s bothering you, my dear?”

Irritations relating to body like hunger, tiredness, or pain can be managed by pausing for a few minutes and taking care of self.
Irritations caused by mental stress are difficult to manage, I agree. I always remind myself

"This is the one life that I've got. And I don't want to waste it on these irrelevant matters."

You too can choose a mantra which calms you down right at level 1.

Also, there are certain parts of the day when irritations are on the rise. Like for me, morning time is stressful because there's a lot of running and planning involved. Every work is inevitable. So I've started drinking lots of water to remain calm.

Level 2
At level 2, I can feel the stress building up. The same question helps me then. I identify the reason, and then manage it.

Level 3
I've not become a perfect no yelling mom. When I scream, I feel really guilty. Then I go back to level 1 to find out 
"What was really bothering me, and what I can do to stop this irritation right at level 1 the next time it happens?"

Dear Parents!! Remember parenting is a journey where all of us learn from our mistakes to become better than yesterday. If today we pay attention to our behavior, tomorrow we'll experience better behavior from our kids too. They too will learn from us how to manage their anger sparks.