This morning, (right after writing my gratitude journal no less) I asked 3 times for my son to put on his socks to get ready to head out the door…
He didn’t seem to be responding, and something flicked in my brain and I was yelling “PUT YOUR SOCKS ON!!!!” before I even knew what was happening.
There’s a video going around about this right now. So many Mums psycho-yelling that it is now a meme.
Now, I absolutely know better than this behaviour. There’s a bunch of reasons why kids don’t respond immediately to your instructions.
I know that if your kid isn’t doing what you ask, they may be taking the time to process the instruction inside their brain, they may not have heard it, they may have trouble doing it by themselves and need help, they may need you to come and touch them to help them focus on the task (kinesthetic kids), or a million other reasons.
Mostly kids don’t ignore us out of wilful disobedience, they are just in their own little world, living in their own time, far from any thought of what needs to happen by when to get everyone out the door on time.
Kids live in the PRESENT moment.
It’s us adults that live in “time” with a past and a future with goals and consequences for action or inaction.
Instead of trying to mould them to our faster timeline, we could all take a leaf from their book and slow the hell down. But, we also live in this world of time. So there’s got to be a middle ground right?
Immediately after my outburst I took myself for a time-out to calm down. And luckily my husband was there to take over and peacefully put my son’s socks on.
I apologised to the kids, and we all happily scooted up to school, but the minute I dropped them both off, my actions were right there with me, demanding I do something about it.
I know this is not the kind of Mum I want to be. I grew up with my Dad yelling at me when I did something “wrong” and for the life of me I do not want to pass on that legacy to my kids. Even as an adult, the minute I make a mistake I get an awful, sick feeling in my stomach, and my inner child wants to run and hide and pretend it didn’t happen.
BUT even though I know better, even though I have the skills to train others to solve this, even though I meditate, even though I make a practice to feel my feelings instead of eating them, even though I journal, and am committed to my inner growth, and have done over 15 years of learning, training, teaching, coaching and personal growth work, I still wasn’t able to solve this on my own.
Now for some people this might send them into a spiral of self-loathing and fraud complex. However I know NLP 101 – “People are not their behaviours”, and “No failure, only feedback”.
I know that this behaviour that I occasionally do when I’m tired and triggered is not WHO I AM as a person. I’m still a good mum, and my kids know I love them deeply. And, even though I felt shame and guilt immediately following it, – which are there to help me know I need to take action to make a change – further shaming myself about this momentary lapse of judgement will not stop me doing it.
I know that it’s just a screw loose in my wiring; a program that was downloaded into me in my own childhood, that is being activated now that I am a parent myself. I have always had a fiery temper, but this was never a problem before I had kids. It’s lain dormant in me all this time, and now it’s turned on; the “Yelling Parent Program”. I saw my Dad discipline me and my sister in that way, which was how his Dad disciplined him, and so on, all the way back into my Anglo-Irish heritage. And even though I consciously don’t want to do it, this program switches on in me unconsciously in certain moments of my parenting.
When that switch gets triggered I’m no longer in charge of what’s happening. My unconscious programs are running the show.
I know that even with all my skills, this issue is being triggered out of something that is in my blind-spot.
So, I need someone else to help me with this.
I need someone to help ask me the right questions to shine a light on the areas of my own programming that I can’t access by myself now.
Do you ever feel like you there’s some things that you do that are totally out of alignment with what you want and what you would consciously choose to do?
Bianca described it perfectly when she said “Oh I was just minding my own business when a Toblerone fell into my mouth!” lol.
We all do it somewhere, in some area of our lives. That’s the hidden opportunity behind the uncomfortable feeling. We get to see the behaviour so we have the opportunity to CHOOSE to come back into alignment with our truth.
Luckily, I have some amazing coaching colleagues, and so I’ve reached out to my friend Dina Cooper; a Parenting Coach, who’s just written an amazing book called Smart Parenting, and I’m going to book in some sessions with her to help me work this thing out.
Being human is not about always getting it right. Being a leader is not about being perfect. In my mind, it is about doing what you can to make it right when your actions don’t align with your values. It is about asking for help, and investing in help when you need it so that you can heal and upgrade the places of your own psyche that are running out-dated software.
What I’m proud of is that even through these uncomfortable emotions, I didn’t turn to food to numb myself out. That instead of hiding this, and pretending that I’m perfect and I never make mistakes, I’m openly sharing it with you.
I’m sharing this with you, to show you that I’m human too – (just incase you ever had me on a teacher-pedestal). And to model giving yourself permission to ask for help when you need it; and be real, even when it’s a bit embarrassing.
If you find yourself turning to food in times like these, and you need some help to stop eating your way through your uncomfortable emotions, you’re allowed to reach out for help too. Bianca and I eat those problems for breakfast. Join us on our next webinar, where we teach our unique Body Confidence Key and show you how we can help you shine a light on the unconscious emotional eating programs you might be running that are causing you to turn to food to numb out uncomfortable emotions or to deal with crazy parenting moments.
And if this has touched a nerve and you want some help to be a better parent, Check out Dina’s site https://www.hoogi.com.au/ – I’m buying her book now.
Thanks for listening, I’ll keep you updated.
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