For anyone who may have missed it, I did a three part guest post on Gently Disciplining Ourselves over at Authentic Parenting. Like every other parent I know, despite my convictions regarding gentle discipline, I get mad. I get overwhelmed. I get frustrated. Recognizing this has caused me to work a lot on my own toolbox for handling my big emotions and growing into the parent I want to be. This is a small excerpt from my third post.
Follow a script. Create and memorize a short list of steps to handle your triggers that you can follow in the moment. For me it goes like this: STOP. DEEP BREATH. Let go of any unhelpful thoughts. How can I help this situation *right now*? Later on, I can assess what I can do to prevent things in the future, but if I try to focus on what will make it better in this moment, it throws out punitive, angry responses and gets me thinking about positive strategies to solve the problem and maintain/restore connection. Then practice, practice, practice! It takes awhile for it to become automatic. The results are worth it, though.
Check out some of the other tools in the full posts! And while you are there, read Mamapoekie's posts. She is a beautiful example of a loving parent and has tons of info on many topics. You can also follow Authentic Parenting on Facebook. :)