Being a parent is stressful, exhausting, and frustrating, it’s no wonder we are so angry all the time. Many of us are out here looking for tips on anger management for moms, but what some of us do not realize is that we are likely keeping hold of habits that are keeping us mad. After all, when we go through the same thing day after day, it eventually becomes apparent that in order for our anger to go down, something needs to change. Sometimes that something is us.
Anger Management for Moms: 5 Habits That Are Keeping You ANGRY
Ouch. Did that sting? Does this hit painfully close to home? Do you feel strangely relieved to know that you are not alone? Good, because you are not. You are not the only mom that is tired of yelling all the time. You aren’t the only mom that is ashamed of letting the crazy mood swings and the rage that comes with it take control and make your days with the kids a whole lot different than those sweet mommy and kid days that you dreamt about back when you were an expectant mom imagining a lovely, peaceful and calm life with babies.
Before we go any further, you must realize two things:
- You are not a bad mom (I know you were thinking it)
- You are not alone (we are all in this together)
First and foremost, let me just say that I salute you for taking the initiative to be looking up anger management tips at all. You know that your anger needs to be dealt with and I applaud you for taking those first steps. They are not easy to do. I also want you to know that you are not alone. Many, many of us are in this angry habits situation. We can and will do better and we are in this together!
Anger Management for moms: Anger Habit #1
The Habit of Anger itself
Being ready for anger on a constant basis is a real thing. Without even realizing it, many of us are just automatically ready to get angry. Think about it for a minute: how many times do you do the same thing over and over and get mad every time?
I will use myself as an example here because I am guilty of this. My children have their alarm clocks set each morning, yet I go in and check to be sure they are up. Most of the time, my daughter is still sleeping and I get mad about it every single time. I always go in there ready to see her asleep and ready to yell at her to wake up. That means that I am starting most of my mornings angry because she is sleeping in, yet again. Instead of going in expecting the same thing and being automatically prepared for anger, the goal should be to set different expectations so that this isn’t how we are starting our days.
For example: She needs to turn up the volume on her alarm, or maybe we should adjust her bedtime so that she is sleeping more and not as tired in the morning. There are options here other than constantly reliving the same anger trauma, we just need to put them into practice.
Reading about the negative effects angry moms have on their children really hit home for me and I knew I had to change.
Anger Management for Moms: Anger Habit #2
Maintaining Unrealistic Thought Patterns
Many moms are so busy trying to be perfect all the time that we don’t realize that in reality we are holding onto unrealistic thought patterns which are furthering our anger.
These unrealistic thought patterns are often something like this:
- You must be perfect all the time. (Nope, you don’t. NO ONE IS PERFECT ALL THE TIME SO STOP WITH THIS BELIEF)
- You must please everyone around you. (Nope. Your goals should be to take care of your family and yourself. That doesn’t even mean that they will always be pleased because they won’t and that’s ok.)
- You have to be in control of everything. (You simply cannot be in control of everything and that’s ok. Besides, it is surprisingly unsatisfying to be in absolute control of everything so loosen the reins a bit and enjoy not having to do the heavy lifting once in a while.)
- You must say yes to everything that is asked of you. (So many of us moms fall into the trap of saying yes to everything that is asked of us and we simply cannot allow this. It is too much for our bodies and our minds and can easily lead to us getting angry.)
Do these thought patterns sound familiar to you? When was the last time you thought any one of them to yourself?
Anger Management for Moms: Anger Habit #3
Comparing Yourself to Others
Comparing yourself to others is most definitely a habit that many of us face. The habit of comparison is incredibly common and it is very easy to do. Comparison has long been a detriment to mental health. Never has this been more true than it is now, in the time of social media. It’s easy to get angry if you think that you are the only mom that is exhausted and frustrated. Who wouldn’t be mad when you just see smiling pictures of adorable children and no hint at all that they are throwing fits and talking back?
It is imperative to remember that social media is incredibly filtered. Very few people put the negative parts of life on social media. Most people only post the best of the best photos and moments on their timelines. There are plenty of people out there too who post blatantly fake status updates and posts, such as people who are in the middle of a contentious divorce posting smiling family vacation photos. You simply never know what is real or what isn’t, but what you do know is that it is all filtered.
Don’t allow yourself to get sucked into the comparison game. It is a game that no one wins.
Anger Management for moms: Anger Habit #4
The Habit of Not Taking Care of Yourself
Not taking care of yourself is a habit in itself. Many of us get in the day to day habit of not following healthy habits. The fact is that when we don’t take care of ourselves, we don’t feel well and I don’t know about you, but when I don’t feel well, anger comes quickly. You need to flip this habit in reverse and make your health a priority. A healthier mom is a happier mom.
I’m not saying you need to do any specific thing here, what I am saying is that focusing on your health in any way is better than not at all. Here are some of the things that you can change in your life that will make a difference in your health and could quite likely make you less angry:
- Exercise More Often
- Go to Bed Earlier
- Medidate (let me show you how)
- Stop Smoking
- Cut out Fast Food
- Eat More Veggies
- Drink Less Often
Any one of these things can help you feel better and be less angry.
Anger Management for Moms: Anger Habit #5
Expecting Instant Change
If you are wanting to make a change in your anger, good for you! Many of us have been there and we are so proud of you for wanting to make this change. It’s important not to fall into the habit of expecting instant change though, because that is unrealistic and can lead to feelings of failure.
If your anger is set off by certain behaviors of your children, the same rules apply here. You cannot expect instant change in their behavior the same as you cannot expect instant change in yours. Behavior improvement will continue to be a work in progress and expecting to have instant success is just setting yourself up for failure.
This goes back to the image of perfection that we were speaking of earlier, you need to be realistic in your expectations in order for progress to happen. You need to expect some setbacks and frustrations. The goal is to take it step by step and making changes in a slow, steady manner that will lead to a lifetime change.
Curing yourself of anger isn’t unlike an addict trying to battle their demons. No one is saying this is easy, but you can do it. You need to be ready to make the change and be ready to leave the angry mindset behind you.