People often comment on how patient I am with my kids. The truth is I do have a lot of patience. Perhaps some people (my dear husband) might even argue that I’m overly patient with my kids and they could benefit from a bit more vigilance/structure; they are probably right 😊. What I am sure of is that we are attempting to raise 4 very different, independent kiddos that each have unique talents, gifts, and personalities. Parenting has proven to have a steep learning curve and so, for me, patience has proven one of my favorite tools to use when faced with the daily onslaught of parenting adventures. I typically choose patience over yelling, arguing, and power struggles; I pick my battles. I choose to NOT die on the hill battling matching socks, bows in hair, or perfectly made beds.
However, my patience does wear thin in certain areas. I don’t know about your little angels, but my kids bicker; they might be pros at it. I always keep an eye out for helpful tricks and strategies to not only STOP the bickering but help them grow as human beings. I stumbled upon the following article: ‘5 Steps To Help Kids Resolve Conflict.’ It was originally published by the author of the Sunshine Parenting blog and written in response to her observations being a camp director for 30 years. I think the list easily transitions outside the camp setting and perhaps even more broadly to any conflict situation. Hopefully you find it as helpful as our house has. I’ve listed the steps below but you’ll have to pop over to the article to get the full descriptions- I think it’s well worth your time!
1. Calm Down
2. State & Understand the Problem
3. Apologize Well
4. Promote Solution Finding
5. Follow Up
The tips in the article above are just another tool that help EQUIP our family as we navigate daily conflict. I have also been to known to parrot what my own Mother said- reminding my kids that despite the bickering now, they will one day enjoy each other as adult friends; I do believe (hope) this is true. Maybe someday soon I’ll find the perfect balance of patience and vigilance as a parent but perhaps I never will. For today I choose to go cheer on 1 kiddo at soccer, listen to the others bicker, and remember the wise words from Kung Fu Panda 3, “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift… that is why they call it the present.”
If you are interested in how EQUIP Counseling can help
support you and your family, pop over to EQUIPCounseling.com