It doesn’t take a parenting expert to know that every parent will get frustrated with their kids at some point. And often that frustration leads to anger and yelling. But you can learn how to be a more patient parent with these easy tips that will turn you from an angry mom to a calm mom.
How to be a more patient mom
I never knew being a patient parent would be so hard. Until I had my daughter.
I don’t know about you, but I often feel like a housekeeper in my own home. It’s not just the cleaning and the laundry or the endless errands I run to keep my family afloat. It’s the constant cleaning up small messes left behind from everyone else.
Most days, I clean up the bread crumbs left behind from breakfast toast. Or the spilled milk from her dinner cup. Or even the mound of dishes with (hardened) food stuck to them. Even though I’ve asked her about a hundred times to PLEASE rinse her dishes off.
But slowly, like a growing headache, it all builds up and builds up. Until one day, I just snap.
I end up screaming and yelling and going on for a good 10 minutes about how I’m SO tired of cleaning up after everyone else.
And how I’m not a housekeeper and I’m not a slave. That by leaving a mess, they have no respect for me, no respect for my time, and no respect for everything I do for them.
Does she learn a lesson? Heck no. She looks at me like I’m a green-eyed monster and says something like “Ok.. geeze mom! You don’t have to act so crazy.”
Kids will never understand that THEY are the reason we get so crazy.
Any of this sound familiar?
It’s not like I enjoy losing my patience. I would LOVE to be a more patient mom.
Reasons why parents lose their patience with their kids
There are many reasons why parents lose their temper and a lot of times it doesn’t even have to do with the kids.
But it’s our kids that seem to push us over the edge and make us snap the most often.
Why is this?
If you were at work and dealing with a difficult co-worker, you have the chance to walk away. You can avoid them, or even talk to the boss about the situation. But you can’t do that with kids.
You get no relief from kids
Your children are always there and from infancy to the teenage years, they need our constant attention.
No one can be “on” all the time without cracking at some point. And as a parent, that’s exactly what we are expected to be.
We are expected to be engaged 100% of time, and to be perfect in every way.
It’s just not possible.
Frustration over lack of communication
Toddlers don’t quite comprehend what we need from them. Middle Schoolers are constantly questioning us in return. And teenagers are pushing boundaries all over the place.
Having a productive conversation with any child from this group is a hard task. So learning how to stay a patient parent isn’t easy when the communication is so off.
We easily get frustrated by kids only half listening to us, or not fully understanding what they need from us.
I’ve watched my daughter get “overwhelmed” (her words) by having too many chores in one day. I wish she understood how many things I’M responsible for and how overwhelmed I get. But she cognitively can’t understand that.
What you can do to become a more patient parent
Having a child change the way their brain works is impossible. It’s the way we, as parents, talk to them that will make any difference. Becoming a more patient parent has nothing to do with your kid behaving better, and everything to do with how you handle them.
Here are some easy tips to becoming a patient mom.
Take deep breaths
Like in any situation where you feel like you are going to get angry, stop what you are doing and take a few deep breaths. Count to 10 (or 50 if you need to) and slowly breathe in your nose and out your mouth.
This calming technique will help you slow down and re-enter the situation with a clearer head.
Learn to walk away
When I feel myself getting really stressed out and on the verge of screaming my lungs off, I walk away.
Kids may not always understand this or even be happy about this. But if you need to remove yourself from the situation, then do it. It’s better to walk away than to start screaming at your kids, losing your mind, and ending up saying things you regret.
Even though they are kids, us Moms are still human. And once we cross a point of no return, we forget we are talking to our kids say things we shouldn’t. The best way to avoid this to to just walk away first.
Use the distraction technique on yourself
I used this technique when my daughter was a toddler and started having some big time temper tantrums. But the secret is, it can work on adults too!
When you start to feel that irritation at your kids building, distract yourself with something else.
Even when Im in the middle of an argument with my daughter and she is just going on and on and won’t stop… I’ll try to bring up another topic and just redirect the conversation elsewhere.
Because sometimes it’s not about fighting with each other, it’s about not understanding each other. Realizing a kids mind cannot comprehend everything an adults can, will help make you realize some arguments are just not worth having.
Ask Yourself what your child’s goal is
Are they arguing because they are just trying to stay up late? Do they not like their dinner? Did they get into a fight with their siblings?
By questioning WHY your kid is testing your patience, will help you understand how to handle the situation. And that could help diffuse an argument before it even starts.
Stop caring about the little things
One huge tip that has helped me be a more patient parent is learning how to let go of things that just don’t really matter.
When I get frustrated that no one has helped with dishes and the kitchen is a mess, I just walk away and try to ignore it for a night.
When my daughter didn’t make her bed or left a wet towel on the ground for the one millionth time… I try to remind myself that she’s trying her best. That she forgot this one time, and it really isn’t a big deal.
Be healthy! Get enough sleep and eat well
I used to work night shift and after a few shifts in a row, my level of exhaustion was beyond the norm. On those days, I felt like I either exploded or cried about EVERYTHING. And my daughter got most of the wrath aimed at her.
Even now when I feel overtired at night, I can tell my frustration level growing faster than normal.
Not getting enough sleep and not eating well are surefire ways to make you lose your patience over tiny things. Prevent that from happening by taking care of yourself as best as you can.
Some things you can do to take care of yourself:
- Take a bath
- Read a book
- Write in a journal
- Do some adult coloring
- Listen to a Podcast
Recognize your triggers
If you get into a fight with your significant other, your emotions are intense and your’e already seeing read. Trying to deal with your children at this time is probably not a good idea.
Learn what makes your blood boil and recognize when certain times and situations make it impossible to stay a patient parent. If you can recognize your triggers, you can avoid those frustration moments with your kids getting out of hand.
Fake it if you need to
You don’t have to actually BE a patient parent to look like one. Children don’t always understand everything we are going through and never will. They also will never know when you ARE a patient and calm mom versus when you plaster a smile on your face to just act like one.
If they see a calm mom, they are more likely to stay calm themselves.
Talk to your kids
In some moments where I have really lost my patience with my daughter, I talk to her about it after we have both calmed down.
I explain why I got upset and why I yelled. I also tell her why I lost my patience. Even if it has nothing to do with her.
Sometimes I explain that I’m really tired and I apologize for yelling. I don’t apologize for her behavior or any consequences.
At times, I even try to use it as a lesson. That I got upset over the dishes because I feel like no one helps mommy. And if mommy had more help, she could spend more time with you or even be more relaxed. Talking to my daughter and having her understand what’s going on, helps both of us become more patient in the future.
Watch your tone of voice
Dogs are a perfect example of how a tone of voice can determine an entire conversation. You can tell a dog they are being SO BAD but if you do it in a sweet voice with a smile, they will wag their tail and be so happy. But if you tell them in a harsh, strict voice they are a good dog, they will cower at your feet.
Kids are really no different. you can punish them in a sweet voice with a calm manner and they will listen and be attentive. But the second you raise your voice and start yelling, they tune out. Or worse, get angry themselves.
You can determine an entire conversation and be a more patient parent just by watching the tone of your voice when you speak to your kids.
Simple ways to to cool down
If you feel yourself getting frustrated at your kids and you need some ways to cool down, try some of these easy solutions:
- Wash your face
- Pet your dog
- Do some push-ups
- Text your best friend
- Watch some funny YouTube videos
Final Thoughts on how to be a more patient parent
There are two things to really remember when you are trying to be a more patient parent.
First of all, there is no such thing as a perfect parent. These calming techniques and parenting tips are meant to bring more patience to your home. NOT to make you a perfect parent.
Second, go easy on yourself. You are human like the rest of us. And you’re going to make a million mistakes.
If my daughter and I have a bad night, we tell each other that tomorrow is a new day. And everyone has the chance to start over and start fresh the next day. So if you both lose your temper, promise to let it go and start tomorrow as a new day.
You might enjoy reading:
- How to Get Kids to Stop Talking Back
- Effective Ways to Teach Angry Kids to Calm Down
- 20 Easy Ways to be a Fun Mom