Have you ever felt like crap because you yelled at your kids? After you said you would stop?
Do I EVER know how that feels.
Anger. For some, it’s an emotion we fear, conceal, and feel shame over.
But why is that?
Anger itself is an emotion–it’s neither right nor wrong. Anger is a signal that things are out of balance. However, there are constructive ways to handle anger… and not so constructive ways to handle anger.
If you met me on the street, you wouldn’t guess this–but if you know me well enough, you know that I have been an angry person.
If you’re one of my children, you know that I have been an angry mom.
I’m not proud to admit that, because it was never my intention to snap at my husband and kids or withdraw myself when I felt overwhelmed by a situation.
Motherhood, like most major life transitions, tends to bring out the best and worst in a woman. When you’re under pressure, you can realize how much you need better tools.
With a lot of prayer and support, I am learning to manage stress and my emotions in a much healthier manner than I have in the past.
For the mom struggling with anger, here are 7 things I have learned from experience that you are going to need more than ever. If this doesn’t resonate with you, but you know an angry mom, I hope you will pray for her and support her in taking care of herself.
7 THINGS AN ANGRY MOM NEEDS MORE THAN EVER
Nothing–not a 10-second countdown, or a deep breath, or a punching bag workout has helped me more than taking my anger to the throne of God.
When you’re prone to explode, it helps to put yourself in a timeout long enough to let all of that emotion out. Don’t worry about praying pretty–God can handle the ugly, too.
If you are chronically angry, you may also be chronically exhausted. Sleep is so important to help regulate your hormones, which affects your mood. 9 out of 10 times, a meal and a nap is enough to set you straight.
Are you working all day and coming home to make dinner and spend time with your family? Are you at home with the kids all day long and maybe all night because your husband works late?
Whatever your situation, you need to build regular time into your schedule for yourself to recharge.
As a homeschooling mom, I am with my kids ALL the time. During this season, I am thankfully able to take a few hours a week to exercise, window shop, or do whatever I feel like doing. If you are burning the candle at both ends and your husband is not available to give you a break, consider finding someone to watch the kids once in a while so you can have a break.
I spent SO many years trying to do it all myself. I was hesitant to accept offers from my husband, my mom, his mom, and friends to help me. I was prideful and thought I should be managing everything on my own.
When someone offers to help you with something, most of the time they are blessed to be able to do it. Give someone the blessing of giving you a hand.
Ladies, we need each other. We are all imperfect human beings with our own individual struggles. If anger is not the thing you struggle with–instead of judging the angry mom, what if you asked yourself how you could help her? Pray for her. Watch her kids for a couple hours so she can take a nap or go out for coffee. Swap babysitting so she and her husband can reconnect. We are made with different giftings for a reason–-to help one another.
I gave myself a lot of grief over being an angry mom. But I learned that putting myself in a box and beating the box up with a bat wasn’t going to help me manage my emotions any better. We all fail daily. This is why I need Jesus. When I began to accept the grace Jesus offered me, and spent more time talking to Him about my problems, I found that I wasn’t as angry.
Finally, if you are an angry–or formerly angry mom, like myself–you know that what you really need is an arsenal of tools at your disposal. The reason you keep popping off is that you don’t know what else to do. You need resources–people, counselors, books, videos–to teach you how to manage your emotions, how to take care of yourself, and how to manage your stress levels.
Here are some of my favorite books to help you manage anger.
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A FEW AWESOME BOOKS TO HELP YOU MASTER YOUR EMOTIONS
- Triggers: Exchanging Parents’ Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses by Amber Lia and Wendy Speake
- She’s Gonna Blow!: Real Help for Moms Dealing with Anger by Julie Ann Barnhill
- From Grouchy to Great: Finding Joy in the Journey of Motherhood by Ruth Schwenk
- Losing It: A Christian Parent’s Guide to Overcoming Anger by Luke Gilkerson
I hope this information helps you, but even more–I hope you know that you are not alone in dealing with anger. With a little self care and a whole lot of prayer, support, and self-compassion, you can manage anger instead of allowing it to rain on your parade.
What are some of your own tips for finding calm when you’re ready to blow? Let me know in the comments! And feel free to share this post!