I have had my share of challenges while raising my boys.

I spent the first 14 years or so of parenting losing my temper, yelling, being frustrated and disappointed in my kids and in myself.

Do you struggle with staying calm while parenting?

I have done a lot of work with coaching and emotional clearing to help get me to a place where I MOSTLY stay calm while parenting.  Even when crazy things come up.

Like when Devon told me he was stabbed in the foot by Santa a few days before Christmas, so he wasn’t able to come up to visit us for the Holidays.

Devon… he is 23 and keeps us on our toes.  I am not sure how come he seems to be the one that gets himself into these crazy situations, but he does.  It gives me lots of practice to stay calm and grounded when crazy things happen.

So, what is my favorite thought I use in these situations? (Though it may not actually apply to the Santa stabbing situation)

“It is age appropriate to…..”

When my boys get on each other’s nerves… it is reassuring to remind myself – “It is age appropriate for them to not always get along.”

When my 15-year-old rolls his eyes when I remind him to empty the garbage, instead of getting annoyed, I remember, “It is age appropriate to not want to do chores.”

It works for almost every situation…. Because typically what your kids are doing is age appropriate.  Even if they are lying to you or sneaking around or talking back or having temper tantrums…. Depending on the age, it is highly likely appropriate.

It does not mean I don’t teach them or correct their behavior.

It does mean that I am able to do that from a calm and grounded space, because I recognize it is age appropriate, it helps me to see it as neutral, instead as an afront to me, or feel bad that I have raised them wrong, etc…. it takes the emotions out.  It helps me not spin about it!

That is SOOO powerful, because when I respond from a place of calm and acceptance, it allows them to respond to me more calmly as well. 

I also use “appropriate” in some other phrases as well. Often to help me feel more kind to myself…

  • “It is emotionally appropriate for me to feel disappointed that Devon won’t be here for Christmas.”
  • “It is emotionally appropriated for me to be frustrated when my son doesn’t do his chore even when reminded many times.”
  • “It is physically appropriate that I would need a nap today, when I was up late last night and am getting over a sinus infection.” 

Somehow saying these things help me have grace for myself and take care of myself, just as I take care of my children and spouse.

Try it this week!

– the next time a child does something that normally upsets you… say to yourself, “It is age appropriate for ______.” 

See if it helps you to be more neutral about what they did and respond more calmly.

If you want some coaching about specific things you are struggling with your family about, then Essentials to Enjoy Life is a perfect class to join!  It is starting this week, so if there is a spot still open, you may have a chance to join.   

Visit https://enjoy-life1.teachable.com/p/essentials-to-enjoy-life-feb-2021to see if it is a good fit for you!

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