Have you noticed that you are raising your voice quite often, and you feel bad about it? Well, You should feel bad, but not because you are a bad person. It’s highly likely that you have been exposed to someone with a bad temper during your formative years – from birth to 7 years of age. Maybe a parent, grandparent or care giver.
We Humans Have These Amazing Mirror Neurons. What Neurons?
Mirror neurons are neurons that fire both when an animal acts and when the animal observes the same action performed by another. These neurons “mirror” the behavior of the other, as though the observer were acting itself.
From birth these groups of neurons are active and they allow us to learn to eat, dress, speak, to learn how to behave in certain situations too. In other words they are “monkey see – monkey do” neurons.
So raising your voice when kids are not listening to you is “copied” in your subconscious mind. It feels normal, because your parents yelled at you.
OK, the reason why you yell at your kids is not because you are a bad person, it’s not really your fault, but do you feel good after shouting at your children? No! Is it effective parenting? No. Do your children listen to you more when you are yelling more? No.
Here are some signals we send to our kids when we yell:
- It’s OK to yell – so if I want to be heard , I have to yell
- I’m powerless – every time when you loose your patience and start yelling, you have “lost” the power play to your child. Its so easy to manipulate you mommy/daddy!
- It’s OK not to listen and just shout. If I shout everyone have to listen – I don’t need to listen, I’ll just shout more! And your household will just get louder and louder.
What Can You Do To Stop This Loud Cycle?
1. The traditional – count to 10 and take 5 deep breath before you open your mouth when feeling angry.
2. Imagine you are talking to your friends children instead of your own – very often we are more tolerant to strangers than to one of our own.
3. Take responsibility for your actions – If you have yelled again – take your time to apologize to your children – at least they will know – this kind of behavior is not OK, and you are working on it.
4. Wear a rubber band around your wrist , and every time when you are about to shout, just pull it and give your wrist a little shock – it’s not very pleasant, but it’s effective – especially if you ask your kids to pull it when you start raising your voice!
I hope I made you think! If you need more help in dealing with tough situation don’t hesitate to reach out! Contact me and we’ll figure out how to help you!