So my husband had to remind me to check my tone while we were grocery shopping yesterday. (I guess he recently read my post.)
I had promised myself that I would use the count-to-5 rule before I opened my mouth and said anything in response to anyone, not just my kids.
So far, I have been successful with this rule about 40% of the time.
Not good enough.
I’m not beating myself up here. I’m just saying, I expect more from myself.
This morning, while trying to get the kids to tidy up their toys before we left for the day, I used my nasty voice repeatedly.
Some comments heard by the walls (and the kids):
“Oh, are you too tired to pick up your toys? So am I.”
“You’re going to miss that toy when I throw it in the garbage.”
“I’ve got my own messes to clean up. That pile of toys on the floor? That’s your mess. I’ll trade you the breakfast dishes for the toy pile?”
Not proud moments. All the way into work, I replayed how I could have handled tidy-up time better.
Here’s what I came up with:
Step 1 – Go to bed earlier tonight and get enough sleep so that I’m not on auto-cranky mode tomorrow morning.
Step 2 – Clean out the toy bins so that there aren’t as many toys around. (It’s not like my kids play with all of the toys at once anyway.)
Step 3 – Instead of later in our morning routine, institute tidy-up time right after breakfast before we get dressed and ready for school/daycare/work.
Step 4 – Change the count-to-5 rule to a count-to-10 rule.
Step 5 – Remember to breathe.
Something else I noticed on the way to the office: I hadn’t taken a good, deep breath since the kids woke up this morning.
There is something to be said for adequate amounts of oxygen to the brain.