Think before reacting with your kids.

How to Think Before Reacting To Your Kids

I was thrilled with the opportunity to write a guest blog for one of my favourite websites, Tiny Buddha, about my experience of learning to press my mental pause button and think before reacting.

It was a difficult to write as Tiny Buddha have a diverse audience and the blogs they publish aren’t gender specific or about parenting- and I write for busy mothers!

I managed to avoid bringing my kids into it, yet I can’t deny that being a parent gives me daily practice in learning to overcome my quick reactionary nature.

It look me years to stop shouting at my kids, but once I learned how to operate my internal pause button, my relationship with them blossomed.

Through parenting skills classes I learned the art of reflective listening, which involves a giant dose of self restraint when I want to dive in and solve my child’s problem or tell him not to worry because it’s really not that big of a deal.

I learned that my child’s agenda is as important to him as mine is to me. (click to tweet

This was the missing part of my Tiny Buddha blog. I hope reading about how I learned to press my pause button will inspire other mothers to apply it to their own lives.

All parents need to react a little less and listen a lot more. (click to tweet)

How about setting yourself a goal to Press the Mental Pause Button more often?

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In the comments below please share your thoughts. Are you able to think before reacting? What are your strategies for pressing your own mental pause button?
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  1. Helen Bliss on January 19, 2014 at 12:44 AM

    Depends on how I’m traveling, if I’m good yes but if I’m tired & or sick, no.

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 19, 2014 at 6:42 AM

      I hear you on that Helen! When we’re not firing on all cylinders it’s ridiculously hard to think logically and not reactionary.

      This is why we created Project Me. When mothers get into the habit of looking after themselves better (physically and emotionally) we have a whole lot more to give our family.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting and hope to see more of you here.

  2. Clare Greig on January 20, 2014 at 10:10 AM

    I do love this. Must give it a go. This week my husband has been away and there have been a few moments when my son has been naughty and I just want to yell at him. Deep breaths. Thanks Kelly. So exciting you made it onto Tiny Buddha.

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 20, 2014 at 12:19 PM

      Thanks so much Clare! Yes – deeeeeep breaths indeed 🙂 xx

  3. Sonia on January 20, 2014 at 11:04 AM

    Oh its so good to hear that you are a recovering shoutalcoholic! I am one, and although had made a resolution at the beginning of the year with my daughter to take control of my shouting, I have done quite well, but feel myself slipping a little again. Thanks for these tips I needed something like this to give me a boost!

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 20, 2014 at 12:24 PM

      Learning to ‘press pause’ is an ongoing process and not something you can switch on overnight (unfortunately!). Pat yourself on the back for each time you have succeeded with your resolution – and see each mistake as a chance to learn.

      Ask yourself why you slipped up that time (too tired, not being present enough/mind elsewhere, a hot-spot area that needs some rules/figuring out). When we see each mistake as a learning opportunity, we begin to grow more into how we want to be. (instead of just beating ourselves up which is a waste of time!)

      Good luck Sonia – if I can do it, you can too 🙂

      • Johanna on February 19, 2014 at 8:57 PM

        Yes I try but my inner self can’t control I have stopped a lot but still a lot too it’s a massive challenge and bad habit that I wish I could react as good as many other mums I know I have to start by puting more order in the house get less stress …. Uffff hard but happy with my life. Actually this is the only part of it that doesn’t let us grow into a fantastic relationship with my son. STOP SHOUTING 🙂

        • Kelly Pietrangeli on February 19, 2014 at 9:44 PM

          Johanna, it’s an ongoing challenge to become more mindful and self aware and you need to give yourself loads of credit for the awareness you already have.

          Devote regular time to your Project Me. Get to know yourself better and better each month. Understand your weaknesses and develop your self control muscle.

          No beating yourself up! Each day is a fresh chance to start again.

          Identify your trouble spots and become a Pro Problem Solver. If something’s not running well, figure out a better way.

          You’ll look back on the way things are now and see how far you’ve come! xx

  4. […] Catch yourself early. As soon as you feel yourself winding up, summon all your reserves and press the pause button. Take a deep […]

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