Practice Trigger Management {Orange Rhino Project}

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So now I know what my triggers are…but what do I do to address them?


Part of the Orange Rhino Project was to track the triggers that make me yell.

It’s not easy or fun to stop what you’re doing every time after you yell and write down exactly WHY you just yelled. Because most of the time, the reason is silly.

“Kids walking too slow in the parking lot.”

“Nate dropped something.”

“Kids climbing on the bed I just made.”

“Kids being loud while the baby is asleep.”

“Toddler fighting me when I buckle him in car seat.”

“Kids making a mess with their food.”

“Husband challenges my parenting skills.” (Okay this one seems valid for a yell!)

“Room is messy with clutter.”

“I drop something or make a mistake or feel stupid about something.”

“Husband being annoying or not knowing the routine even though he should know it by now.”

“Five-year-old being whiny, irritable, unreasonable in the morning before school.”

Reading them now makes me realize just how undeserving of a yell they really are. But in the moment, I just couldn’t help it I guess.

Fixable Triggers

Now that I’ve identified my triggers, I grouped them into the categories of: fixable, manageable, and unchangeable.

I honestly feel like only one of my triggers is fixable and the rest are manageable.

My desire to yell when the room is messy or cluttered seems like an easy problem to fix– prioritize decluttering and keeping the house in order. That way I will feel calm and sane.

In my opinion, every other trigger on my list is “manageable,” meaning I can’t really prevent or fix them, but I can manage them when they pop up.

Manageable Triggers
My kids walking too slow in the parking lot is not a fixable problem, but it is manageable.

I can manage my expectations and remind myself that my kids are little guys right now. They have short legs and they can’t walk as fast as me. Also, I can stop being in a hurry all the time– that will help, too.

The same goes with triggers like my kids dropping something or making a mess. THEY ARE KIDS.

I need to stop being such a perfectionist and expecting life to go perfectly and my house to always be spotless.

Unchangeable Triggers

The fact that my husband farts in front of me really really annoys me. But apparently that is never going to stop or change, so…I have to just accept it, gross as it is.

He will also probably never put his cereal bowl in the dishwasher or clean up the kitchen to my satisfaction, so I’ve accepted it and now I don’t nag. I just do it myself. Much easier and everyone is happier.

Honestly it takes me less time to put his bowl in the dishwasher myself than to stop and ask him why his bowl can make it to the sink but not the extra two feet to the dishwasher.

But this is all progress. I see why I’m yelling and I just have to be aware in the moment of how silly my trigger is and try to stop before I yell.

Days Without Yelling

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