Parenting

The Orange Rhino Challenge: Days 6-12

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Why am I sucking so hard at this?!

Days Without Yelling Zero
 

Let’s just start with that graphic.

Zero days without yelling. Meaning I yelled today. And most of the other days.

Le sigh.

WHAT IS MY PROBLEM?! Well, I will tell you.

I think in Alcoholics Anonymous they say something about how you have to “work the program.” And I haven’t been “working” the Orange Rhino program. (Learn more about this challenge here.)

I haven’t started my days focusing on my goal, I haven’t even been dedicated the five minutes necessary to read the chapter each day.

I let the same triggers set me off day after day and I wonder why I’m not making progress.

And the thing is when I do bother to read the chapters, they make total sense and they are very helpful.

Day 6

On Day 6 I was supposed to start tracking my triggers– all the things that make me want to scream.

Instead of actually physically doing this on little Post-It notes throughout the day, I breezed past this step and made a mental note of what I thought were my triggers: my kids being annoying, the house being messy, and feeling rushed.

Day 7

“Be honest with yourself” is the mantra of Day 7. This was a tough one. While I typically blame the kids for making me yell, it isn’t really them.

It’s all the other stuff I’m overwhelmed with in life that leaves me with little patience for the ones who need it most– the kids.

There are countless times I can think of when I have dropped something or spilled something and I just lash out and blame the kids with a yell. I have said SO many times, “Why do you make Mommy yell every day?”

Turns out, it’s my own inadequacies that are triggering the yells. Well, most of them anyway. Sometimes the kids really are monsters and provoke me to yell. But it’s shockingly infrequent.



Day 8

Do I experience physical symptoms right before I yell? Hmmm. That is what the Orange Rhino Project wanted me to investigate.

Once I thought about it, I realized that I felt a hot flash of anger and I felt like the walls were closing in on me. I also usually felt an urge to throw something, like The Day I Put a Hole in the Wall.

These physical symptoms are supposed to tip me off to the fact that I’m in the danger zone and I need to remove myself immediately.

Day 9

Identifying my triggers earlier in the week means I now have to categorize them into: Fixable Triggers, Manageable Triggers, and Unchangeable Triggers.

It’s funny, but all the triggers centered around my kids fall under fixable or manageable triggers (because I somewhat control what they do and their routines), yet the husband-centric triggers I put in the unchangeable category. #men

Days 10-12

The tasks for these three days were to fix the fixable triggers, manage the manageable triggers, and acknowledge the unchangeable triggers.

I am still working on this but I will be back with a FULL REPORT on Saturday morning.

And I am making it my personal goal to make it until then without any yells.

Here goes nothing…

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