Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Staying Calm, aka Keeping Our Cool

Not very calm or cool here.  Can you tell? I had just gotten 10 kids plus myself ready for a family wedding and we were cutting it very close.  You can't be late to a wedding! (Oh, and I wasn't too happy that my husband snapped this picture)

I think staying calm and cool is a really hard thing to do for us moms in the 21st century.  Maybe it's just me and my mom friends, or those of us who can tend to be perfectionists, but I think it's a pretty universal mom problem.  I love how in the first "Cheaper By the Dozen" movie when the mom yells, "Mom's loosing it.  She's going to loose it!"  I feel like this quite a bit.  So, how can we keep our cool in stressful, rushed, annoying and other child situations that just seem to push our buttons.  Well, let me be the first to tell you, that I'm still learning how to keep my calm and cool.  See, I'm not naturally a patient, calm person.  I'm a little on the hyper side and if I've had too much caffeine, then I'm a little on the irritable side.  But here are some tips I've learned over the years that maybe will help during this stressful wonderful, holiday season. 

1.  Don't drink too much caffeine.  It can make you irritable and snappy.

2.  Be aware when your hormones are bottoming out.  Don't make any major decisions on how you "feel" at the moment.  You will probably "feel" different in the morning.  No, you WILL feel different in the morning.  And don't plan too much during those "hormonal" times or even during sickness.

3.  Keep eating and drinking.  This may sound pretty obvious, but us moms forget to feed ourselves sometimes and many times impatience and anger could be diverted by eating a good apple with peanut butter : )

4.  If a child is really getting to your nerves and pushing those "I'm gonna loose it" buttons, remove yourself from his or her presence.  Many times, this means for me to send them to their room.  They may not necessarily be in trouble, but you both need your space.  Then wait at least 10 minutes or so before you make "peace" with them.

5.  Allow extra time to get ready for big stressful events or really anytime that you need to be someplace on time.  Delegate at these times too.  Maybe the only one you have to delegate to is your husband because all your children are still small. That's OK, just make things plain to him.  In a nice way, tell your husband, children, babysitter or whoever, what you need them to do and how they can help.

6.  If you have something to do that requires all of your attention, wait until at least most of your children are out of the house or in bed.  I've found that when I'm doing something important and I can't be interrupted, that when I am interrupted (and of course I will be), I get very irritable and snappy.

7.  Smile. Laugh. Sing a funny song.  Just do something besides yelling, screaming or crying.  And pray, pray, pray : )


  1. Funny i always have the same look on my face too! but really thank you for the suggestions will keep them in mind because I'm sure ill need them!

  2. Thank you so much for your list! I am slowly learning these things myself.

  3. Thanks for this post. I really needed it. I have 4 children and I'm seven months pregnant (last saturday was my b-day: 44 !!). I' m so scared .
    Thanks again!!
    Belen from Spain

  4. Great suggestions. Too much caffeine doesn't help. And I think I have that expression more than I realize!

  5. I've just recently had my 6th child and I could have benefitted from reading this list before my baby's baptism last Sunday. I freaked out on my family before the blessed event over small things that felt big at the moment. This is a great list and I will refer back to it over time. It's nice to know that I'm not alone on these things.

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  7. Thanks so much for the advice. I occasionally stop by and read your blog and I'm always inspired by your writing and experience. especially this one which relating to is an understatement. I just recently had a miscarriage after long time of waiting and felt quite overwhelmed by how my husband just couldn't comprehend the scope of my grief, thought of it as a temporary phase, and proceeded to travel overseas to see his mom durinig my bronchits and miscarriage recovery. I was irritable and very stressed with my 3 year old about all that. I am just glad that I read this blog and decided to wait out on making any major decisions during the 'sickness' and hormonal changes and remind myself to 'eat' and drink as I hadn't done that properly after the events. I will reconsider everything once I'm recovered and please keep me and my small but wishing to grow family in your prayers.

    1. Oh Arah, I'm so sorry for you loss. I know that husband's deal and grieve with these things different than we do. I will be praying for you and your family. I'm so thankful this post blessed you. Don't loose hope! God is good. Hugs to you.

  8. Great list!! An apple with peanut butter sounds really good right now. I have also found that I must have that time with the Lord before all things. I realize this can be hard with lots of little ones, and I truly believe we should be in continual fellowship with Him all day as we meditate on His Word and sing and praise Him and pray to Him as we go about our day. But for me, it does help if I begin the day in His Word praising and worshiping Him. His Spirit helps us manifest His fruit. Being in continual fellowship with Him and allowing His Spirit to guide us is SO beneficial because then He does it through us instead of us trying to do it and fail. SO glad you wrote this because it helps to talk about these things and encourage one another together.

    I have never tried to not plan things around my hormones or sicknesses, etc. That is great advice!! And I also love how you make those preparations to step away from a child that is pushing you or send them to their room before you have that moment that we all regret. I always think about how Moses dealt with the Israelites and how hard that must have been. He is such an encouragement to me!! And how Jesus was to ALL the people that continually were coming to Him. Even after John was beheaded, He turned none away that came to Him and had compassion on them. Wow, such AMAZING love. And we are to be like Christ. I am still working this out as well, but truly desire that continual love flowing out of me instead of my flesh!!! Thanks for posting.

  9. This is great Rebecca! I am glad to hear that you have the same struggles as me :)
    Still praying for more blessings at our house.


Thanks so much for your comments! I love them and they keep me writing. I really do read each one.