Monday, July 15, 2013

One Word 2013 - Month 6

If you have been following my One Word Journey this year you probably realized I didn't post last month. Things got hectic, and while I wanted to introduce a new tool I found, I didn't get a chance to write the post. If you haven't been following along and want some background, you can read previous posts here:

One Word 2013 - Love
One Word 2013 - Month 1
One Word 2013 - Month 2
One Word 2013 - Month 3
One Word 2013 - Month 4

So to start with I want to tell you what I have been working on the past couple months. Since realizing that I do not give enough of my "good" self to those I love due to busyness, stress, or just plain selfishness, I have been trying to be more intentional with my words and actions. For me, a big part of this is to control my temper and my words. I'm a yeller.  When I get angry, I yell. (generally followed by crying if I am really, really angry).  More then anything, it is out of frustration, but it is unnecessary and usually leaves everyone (especially me) upset.  Back at the beginning of May a fellow blogger introduced me The Orange Rhino.

The Orange Rhino is a blog written by another self proclaimed yeller who is using the color orange to remind her not to yell. She has been doing this successfully for over a year. While my goals are not that lofty right now; I am trying to use the color orange as a reminder to myself. It could be my clothes that are orange, my kids clothes that are orange, or even my toenails that are orange; luckily I like orange!

In order to do this with any success, I had to start thinking about why I yell. I yell when I get frustrated, frustrated that my kids won't listen, frustrated because I am being interrupted, frustrated because I don't seem to have enough time, those all seem normal enough.  So what can I do instead? Well that is what I have been thinking on this past month.

Frustration that my kids won't listen: I need to look at why they aren't listening. Are they hungry or tired? Am I asking them to do something they aren't capable of doing on their own? Or are they really trying to difficult? Many times with my kids it is that they are trying to be difficult, but they usually have their own reason. Sometimes talking to them about their reason is enough. Other times it isn't, but I can still get through it without yelling if I try.

Frustration that what I need want to work on is interrupted: Most of the time this is just plain selfishness on my part. I don't transition well, neither do my kids, and it can cause some uprisings. I just have to remember what I am doing can wait. Really, I am working on this, and made great improvements in the past few weeks although I don't feel nearly as productive.

Frustrated that I don't have enough time to do what (I think) I need to do: Who has enough time to complete what they think needs done?  From what I have seen, no one! My husband has been telling me for years that I need to prioritize, but my idea has always been everything that needs done first, followed by other people, and then taking care of myself. So I am working on changing priorities a bit, you may notice a bit more mess at my house or fewer blog posts, but in the long run it won't matter. I am also trying to include the kids in more things around here. They are getting to the point that they really can help, so I am going to try to take advantage of that.

I know this is all basic, and had you asked me before this if I knew this, I did. I knew it in my head, but not as much in my heart. This is a recurring theme for me in adult life. I know the right answers in my head, but it takes me a while to get a good grip on the same concept in my heart, and until it is in your heart, I don't think you can effectively act on it.

Of course, this will all take time, but I will strive to control my yelling (except of course in situations where someone is in danger). As I improve, I find myself feeling more love towards and from those around me!