I don’t really think of myself as having a hot temper. But I do have trouble speaking up when something starts to bother me. Thus, the irritant builds and builds, and instead of becoming a pearl, like a grain of stand does in an oyster, it explodes … usually on the person whose behavior I don’t care for and is responsible for making me look and act like a monster.
I’ve been talking about this with my therapist. Because I can remember nothing more horrifying as a kid as those time my dad totally lost it and threw every four-letter word at my mom, or at me or one of my sisters, or all of us, like the time we were making fun of the people in the booth next to us in Dairy Queen. Still can’t get a Buster Bar today without that memory, spanking and all.
So I went back to my parenting books, of course. Because you can find all of life’s problems in parenting books. Author Elizabeth Pantley offers six steps to staying calm in her insightful book, The No-Cry Discipline Solution. And, unlike those I read in most parenting books, they don’t annoy me! In fact, I think she’s got a good case. I’ve excerpted from various paragraphs to give you the following recap, but you really should get her book if you struggle, like I do, with keeping it cool when you’re with the kids:
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