Parenting Is Hard: Breaking Generational Dysfunction

Parenting may be the hardest thing you ever do, and also one of the most important. It stretches our mind and emotions, and fills our hearts like none other. What is also true, is that some of us may find ourselves “losing it” with our children more often than we’d like to. This can be due to many factors (frustration tolerance, emotion regulation skills, stress, generational transmission, etc.). The truth is, most of us are doing the best we can for our children with the emotional skills we were taught (aka-from our family of origin). The good news in, as long as you are on this side of heaven, you are going to be a work in progress! It is good news because Jesus is not surprised by your weaknesses and is eager and available to help you draw upon His Spirit for guidance and strength. With our faith, and the power of the Holy Spirit in mind, here are some skills that have been found helpful in those “Losing it,” moments:

-Deep breaths. This may sound cliche,’ but slow, big breaths activate our body’s relaxation response.

-Neutral Face. In these moments, it is better to ‘ignore’ your child for 10 seconds while you calm down than it is to blow up.

-Be Patient With Yourself. You will not be perfect. It takes time to break dysfunctional habits, but every time you are a little more patient, breathe, or walk away for a moment instead of exploding, you are making progress! That is something to be proud of, and your children will benefit and learn form your healing and skills.

“Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.”
~Zechariah 4:6

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