Strategies for Angry Mums
Being a Mum is a really challenging job, I have four kids and I do recall when they were younger feeling like I was losing my mind. Today things are different my kids are aged 19 to 12 and I have to say some stuff is way easier and some not so much.
There can be constant demands on your time, energy and patience. In my clinic many women will tell me how they feel guilty when they lose it with their kids, when they don’t do what the text books say they ‘ought’ to do.
I don’t know any parent (or person for that matter) who doesn’t occasionally get angry, or feel overwhelmed. Anger is a healthy emotion and it serves an important purpose to help us to see problems and find ways to fix them.
Some parents say they don’t show their anger in front of their children but this can be very confusing for a child. When we are angry our body language usually reflects that but we often tell our children that we are not angry. This lack of authenticity can teach children not to trust their instincts (they know you are angry) or they may learn that they should not accept their own strong emotions.
When you are feeling angry try making these statements to yourself:
- I am angry but I can control myself
- Accidents happen
- I’m angry at the behaviour not my child
- I’m the adult in the situation
- I am going to stay calm
Check in with this great acronym. Are you too? ..
If so deal with the most pressing issue – eat something, take a time out, connect with others or get a little rest.
Stop Things from Building Up
When there are a lot of demands on your time, energy and patience your levels of tension, frustration and fatigue can grow too. When you feel this starting to happen here are some tips to help stop things from getting on top of you:
- Don’t over give – learn to say no. If you are feeling overwhelmed have a policy of saying no for a period of time until you get on top of things
- Create a ritual around letting go of one frustration before you move on to the next task. You could:
- Write it out and tear up the paper
- Do some slow breathing
- Take a short break and get some air
- Or splash you face with cool water
- Take a break before things get to much – schedule the day so that there is time for you to be alone (even if it is just a short time) and ask a partner to have the kids and go have a coffee with a friend. If your children are young get some formal child care for one day a week.
Tips for handling your anger
- Take a time out – when things are really hectic and that might seem impossible, the bathroom can be a safe haven. Pop in there take some music, lock the door and sit for a few minutes doing some breathing or have a shower.
- Have a plan – start to record the things that you find most challenging, then write a short list of things you are able to do when those things come up. It is hard to think about managing your anger when you are in the thick of it.
- Breathe – when you find things are getting under your skin, take four deep slow breaths four times and this can lower your blood pressure.
- Get some exercise – go for a walk if you can, if not star jumps, running up and down stairs, running on the spot – exercise is a great stress reliever.
- Get support – join a group, ask family or friends or your local church
- Be self-compassionate – we are all doing our best and we all get angry from time to time. Remind yourself that you are okay and give yourself permission to let go and move on
- Parent line – is a fantastic resource they have professional counsellors available to talk to you and help you with strategies
Parent line: http://www.parentline.com.au/ PH: 1300 301300, from 8am-10pm, 7 days per week
If you found this blog helpful please share it with your networks … If you are a Mum who struggles to manage strong emotion and would like some additional assistance please contact me for an appointment.
I am also now offering short online courses (duration 30 to 60 minutes). Now you can work with me from the comfort of your own home at a time that suits you. Learn more … https://debbicarberry.com.au/online-services/
Until next time ..