Q. My two young children are very energetic and generally play well together, but they can be quite naughty and I feel myself explode in anger. This leaves me feeling very ashamed, I do apologise to them but still feel I am a bad parent.
How can I control my temper?
A. The most important thing here is that you recognise that you need to make a change both for yourself and for your children. This shows immediately that you are a great parent - so well done. You’ve realised that shouting doesn’t work, the question now is to ask yourself, how much do you want to stop exploding in anger? How committed are you to stopping?
It is important to recognise that the answer to stop exploding at the children lies within you. You and only you are in charge of your mind and therefore your results. Your response is something that you choose, it isn’t something that just happens. Its up to you not your children to manage your reactions to what is happening.
Think back to a situation where you previously over reacted. What were the triggers? What was happening just before you lost your temper? What were the children doing? What time of day did this occur? Who else was involved? How were you feeling? What were the thoughts going around in your head?
Whatever they were, take a few minutes to write them down in detail. Now think about whether any of those triggers can be removed. For example is it certain toys that cause arguments? Or does the behaviour occur only when the children are tired, or that you are busy doing something else? List as many things as you possibly can that will help you to remove some of the triggers.
Next it is vitally important that you choose a different reaction. What are your choices? You could walk away, count to ten, breathe deeply and slowly, see the humour in the situation. Only you know what works best for you, you decide what action you are going to take instead. And remember, if you always do what you’ve always done you’ll always get what you’ve always got!
© Allison Marlowe 2006
About The Author: Allison Marlowe, founder of Allison Marlowe Ltd coaches, inspires and challenges women in business to achieve new levels of success. She can be contacted at www.allisonmarlowe.com