How To Create A Toolbox of Calm

How To Create A Toolbox of Calm
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Back when my kids were very little, life felt hectic and out of control. I was shouting at them way too much and I desperately wanted to be a more peaceful, loving mother.

I decided to create a Toolbox of Calm. Something I could quickly access when I felt a full-blown Mama Meltdown coming on.

I filled a cardboard box with emergency supplies:

CDs of feel-good music, meditations, card decks containing words of wisdom and mantras for mothers, a candle, crystals and stones that felt soothing in my hands. (Even though I know nothing about crystals and stones!)

Toolbox of Calm for Mothers

Plus my essential bottle of Bach Rescue Remedy. (They don’t call it Yoga in a Bottle for nothing. If you haven’t got any, good grief – get your hands on some now!)

BachsRescueRemedy

I kept my Toolbox of Calm under my bed.

When I felt myself spiralling out of control, I’d give myself a Mama Time-Out.

Retreating to my bedroom, my Toolbox of Calm was filled and ready.

A few drops of Bach Rescue Remedy on my tongue then some deep breathing in and out as I chose a card from the deck and read it to myself. A quick rub of a crystal stone for inner strength – then I’d re-enter the fray with a fresh sense of perspective.

The new, calm voice in my head said:

  • ‘I am the adult here, they are the children. I will behave like an adult.’
  • ‘My child is not being a problem, my child is having a problem. How can I help?’
  • ‘No one can make me feel anything. I choose my feelings – and I choose peace.’

Then I’d guzzle down a full glass of water, put on one of the CDs as background music and feel more like my Best Version of Me again.

When I did my amazing Parenting Skills course with the Parent Practice they taught me something I’ll always remember.

Think of your mind as being like the eggs in this diagram below. In a normal state, you have a nice balance between thinking and feeling. But as soon as you get upset, the egg (your mind) gets too filled up with emotion and there’s literally very little (or no!) room left for thinking. All rationality goes out the window!

emotionalEGG

This is why, even when we know what we should be doing, we can’t access it when we’re too filled up with emotion.

See? There’s a scientific explanation and there’s actually nothing wrong with you!

It’s good to also note that the same goes for our children. It’s pointless to try to reason with an emotional child. Wait until their egg has evened out before attempting to talk sense with them or you’re just wasting your time and energy.

Prepare your Toolbox of Calm when you’re in a normal emotional state. Have it all packed and ready in a place you can find it fast.

Then when emotions run high, whatever tiny bit of rationality that’s left in your brain will tell you: JUST GET TO THE DAMN TOOLBOX!

Head there fast before your egg completely fills up with emotion and lose your ability to think.


In the comments below, tell me how you feel about having a Toolbox of Calm. What would you put in your box?

 

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Kelly Pietrangeli

Kelly Pietrangeli

Mama Motivator at Project Me
Kelly Pietrangeli is the creator of Project Me for Busy Mothers, helping women find a happier balance between the kids - and everything else.

Mixing practicality with self-awareness, Kelly helps mothers get on top of their endless to-do’s, set goals and improve their lives one small step at a time.

Grab her free Life Wheel Tool for discovering what needs your focus first.
Kelly Pietrangeli
Tell Us What You Think.

21 Responses to How To Create A Toolbox of Calm

  1. Erika says:

    I was thinking, l would probably like some varied, soft, furry materials (to touch and to lay my face on)
    In nice colors,
    And crochet stuff,
    And A bunch of nice music & meditation-cd:s.
    Maybe some dried fruit and a book of poetry, too:)

    • Thanks for sharing your dream contents of your Toolbox of Calm Erika 🙂

      Often the contents of my box couldn’t serve me in that hectic, heated moment – but later in the evening when they were tucked up in bed, I’d run a bath, then get into bed with my Toolbox and read, listen to a meditation, etc..

      It helped to remind me that my calm alter-ego still existed…. Deep inside somewhere….

  2. Mariah says:

    Okay, I totally need to get some Bach Rescue Remedy!

    • You sure do Mariah!! I think every mama needs a bottle in her handbag at ALL times 🙂

      By the way, it’s also excellent for whenever you’re feeling nervous. I’ve used it for taking my driver’s test, before public speaking and always when I’m skiing!

  3. Jen says:

    Oh my gosh, Kelly you seriously have some of the best suggestions ever! I’m implementing this STAT! FYI, we have been doing the memory jar and it is such a treat seeing the boys putting something in the jar ;-). Thanks for suggesting that!

  4. Selena says:

    I LOVE this idea. In fact, it would be a perfect idea for my Love YOU More project. I’m going to have to check out that Bach Rescue Remedy. Thank you Kelly!

    • You’re so welcome Selena! In London it seems like every mum I knew had a bottle of Bach’s in their handbag, but in other parts of the world less so. You can be a pioneer and bring it to mothers in your part of the world!! (which is where?) xx

  5. Calming music would definitely make the cut. Usually when I put on something calming it gets the kids into chill mode too. Your mantra for mothers sounds good.

  6. Alice Irving says:

    Oh. My. God. YES! I’m doing this. Magnesium supplements going in mine as well. Sharing this immediately. xxxx

    • Yay! So happy you’re going to create your own Toolbox of Calm Alice. I take magnesium supplements every day and have done for something like 20 years. Whenever I run out, I can actually feel myself getting more stressed out and pissy. I take them as part of a multi vitamin called Well Woman.

      Thanks for sharing this post with others 🙂

  7. Nour says:

    i would definitely include a blend of my favourite essential oils to inhale or rub into my wrists. Maybe some photos of happy times too…

  8. Helen Butler says:

    Oh my gosh I love this idea Kelly! I don’t have a toolbox of calm under my bed but I certainly have it on my bookshelf! There are oracle cards, essential oils, crystals, candles, gongs, bells – all sorts of things to help balance my energy as well as that in our home. I know I need to buy some Bach Rescue Remedy though as people keep telling me about it. Clearly it’s a sign to get some!

    • I love the sound of your bookshelf Helen – I’d love to see a picture 🙂

      YES – get your hands on some Bach Rescue Remedy. Yoga in a bottle!

      Another one in the Bach remedy series that I keep here on my desk is called ‘Elm’. It combats overwhelm! Honestly, a few drops on my tongue when my mind is feeling scrambled – and in a few moments I have clarity and a calmer sense of what’s important and what’s not. Miracle stuff!

  9. Kelly! I love this so much – I always recommend creating a “comfort kit” to my clients w/ things to nurture them through each of their senses. Thanks for sharing this with the world – I especially love your title “toolbox of calm.”

  10. Jessica says:

    this is such a great idea! I love it! I can see how this could be extremely helpful.

  11. […] app, do some Tapping, write in my gratitude journal, or read one of my positive books. I have a toolbox of inspiration in a shoebox under my […]

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