Our weekly skill-building email is all about those ongoing, recurring, messy off-track behaviors we call Emotional Projects. Have you noticed there’s a particular time of day or situation that consistently brings up big feelings? Have you made it through an Emotional Project and have ideas to share?
Your Video: I really appreciate Patty’s reframing about how to STOP trying to avoid the melt down. Rather, for now, expect it and plan for it
We are in the middle of an emotional project involving separation. We had a good staylistening this morning. Afterwards the snuggliness, connection, and happiness level was markedly increased. Unfortunately, I decided that we had had enough for the day, and allowed little concessions as we got ready for school (5 minute tv bribe to let me brush his hair, 5 extra minutes of play, walking across the street to poke the decorations at school, etc.). Separation seemed super easy (one of the best drop offs ever), but then kiddo had a rough day. I wish I had done exactly as Patty says here, and not try to avoid the upset.
Its so hard. The first step of setting a LIMIT is to LISTEN – to ourselves to gauge our resources for limit setting / the context to see what might be contributing / and to our children to see things from their point of view and to connect with them before we step in.
Just like children go offtrack because there are feelings or hurts brewing under the surface, we tend to avoid setting LIMITS when WE have stuff brewing underneath the surface. Or we just run out of fuel and just don’t have the resources to bring to limit-setting in that moment.
When we notice ourselves avoiding its totally OK to avoid limits for a bit and focus on refueling. Listening Time, rest, laughter, quiet, play…whatever you need to refuel your good, strong limit setting muscles 🙂
The one convenient thing about feelings is that when we avoid them, they just stay right there (as you saw in the rough day) and there will be many other opportunities to work on them. You’ve got this! <3