"Do you feel like you can only react to your family rather than respond to them?" I had been feeling helpless and out of control when it came to my short fuse with my family and had sought the wise counsel of a trusted friend. When she asked me that question I felt she had hit the nail right on the head. I finally had words to articulate what I felt going on inside.
Most days, I felt as though I was floating above myself, watching myself snap at my husband and kids over nothing, yet powerless to stop it. In the moment, I knew there was no reason to be so frustrated with them, but at the same time everything was so dad-gum frustrating! Nothing says Mom of the Year like a frazzled, coffee-riddled woman with bedhead, ready to blow at any minute just like Old Faithful.
I knew anxiety was knocking on the door, so I had started seeing a Christian counselor to help me unpack what we had been through in the past two years. It turns out, three international moves and losing a family member unexpectedly will really take it's toll on you emotionally. Who knew?
I have always had what some might call a "strong personality" (*snort*), but this was different. Normal, everyday questions and occurrences were sending me from zero to Crazy Angry Mom in two seconds flat. When I explained to my counselor how I was struggling with snapping constantly, he gave me a great tool to help combat it.
Based on conversations I've had with other friends, it would seem I'm not the only one who struggles with this. So, I'd like share with you the tool he gave me.
The key to controlling your temper? Get ANGRY.
That's right. ANGRY.
A - Admit that you are angry. Say to yourself under your breath, "OK, I'm getting a little worked up here."