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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Developing Good Habits: Patience

Ugh. I really shouldn't be the one writing a blog post about patience. I'm very unreliable in this area. My patience is limitless when everything is going perfect and I'm not hungry, thirsty, sick, tired or annoyed. (Kind of sounds like a child!) However, I tend to get easily frustrated and when that happens my patience is gone. Through trial and error, I have a few things I do that helps me be more patient.

1. Appropriate Expectations
Before I had children, it would take just an hour or two to run all my errands for the week. Now that I have two children, it's pretty great if just one of my errands takes an hour. At first, I was pretty frustrated at how long everything was taking but now I have adjusted my expectations and know that everything just takes longer. This helps me not to get so annoyed when I look at my watch and realize how long it took us at the grocery store. I have accepted the fact that grocery shopping is the only errand we will get done that day.

2. Mental Preparedness
One of the best things that helps me react more patiently is visualizing the negative behaviors my children are likely to display in a certain situation, then I can visualize how I will react. It's a fine line because you don't want to expect that your child will react negatively but you also need to be prepared how you will deal with those behaviors should they arise.

3. Singing
I tend to sing a lot with my children. I've gotten really good at making up ridiculous songs to help them get through a temper tantrum or do what I want. Singing also keeps my brain and mouth occupied so I don't say something harsh to my child.

4. Visual Reminders
I bought this MudLOVE bracelet over the weekend as a visual reminder to be more patient. I absolutely love it.

Being impatient can be so destructive if we let it. If we are impatient then we pass that on to our children. Take it a day at a time. Or an hour. Or a minute. Being a patient person, especially a parent, takes determination and constant vigilance. The best way to teach your child to be patient is by being patient with them. Many blessings on your journey to becoming a more patient parent and raising a patient generation.

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