Was reading through a Newsletter of my daughter's previous play school today and they had an interesting article on Conscious Parenting.
Listening to the 2 Youtube links provided in the newsletter, some words spoken by Dr. Shefali, clinical psychologist and Dr Becky Bailey, CEO of Conscious Discipline, seemed to leap out at me. One of them being 'excuse'. It was used in the context that we are parents and there is no excuse for us to ever stop being a parent. Being a parent should always be our priority if we choose to have kids. Not that we cannot have time for ourselves. But when we are at home and with our kids, we should be a parent to them when they turn to us, their parents.
I went on to view more of the videos under Conscious Discipline and more and more of the things that Dr Becky mentions are very real to me. Reactive disciplining is very common. I am guilty of yelling at the kids to stop screaming at each other. And I snatch back a toy from my girl and scold her from snatching from her brother. Dr Becky mentions that when things like this happen, take 3 deep breaths.
What happens when we take 3 deep breaths is that sometimes a CD ROM in our head starts to play. We hear phrases like "I need to teach them a lesson." or "I am cooking, where the heck is daddy to handle this?" or "Give me a break, I am so tired already". And we have to stop the CD and instead replace them with thoughts like I am calm, I am able to handle this, I am ok (she used safe, but I prefer OK).
Because if we don't and have reactive disciplining instead, it will end up with us feeling guilty and trying to make up to our kids for it. AND THESE KIDS KNOW IT !
Dr. Becky also mentions frontal lobe development. When we take the deep breaths and use positive words, it takes us from the center of our brain, the reactive place to the front of our brain, the conscious place. And when we reach there, we can then use the frontal lobes to help us make disciplining conscious.
As long as we don't use our frontal lobes, we will be reactive. And for our kids, it takes them 2 decades to have fully developed frontal lobes. And in this 20 years, we as parents must help them be their frontal lobes and help them develop their frontal lobes. It is a tiring job - not only do we have to be in control of our own frontal lobes and use it often but we must also be frontal lobes for our kids and help them develop theirs.
It's an interesting video. Have a listen. Maybe it can help you in some ways too.
Understanding the Frontal Lobe
There's one on temper tantrums too!