One of the biggest challenges many parents face when caring for children with difficulties regulating their attention, emotions, moods and behaviours is regulating their own emotions when their child loses control. It feels almost impossible to stay calm when our children can't. The key word here is "can't" - as in they are not able to stay calm rather than not willing to. This distinction is key.
If we think our child CAN be calm but WON'T, we can only experience frustration and find ourselves in a trap, trying to motivate, nag, reward and cajole our kids to change their mood or behaviours. If, on the other hand, we understand that our child CAN'T be calm, we can begin to consider what underlying skills they need to learn in order to be calm and invest our time and efforts towards helping them develop needed skills.
It's often at this point that we're in a catch-22. For anyone to learn new skills, they need to be calm; but how do we go about teaching someone to calm down if they need to be calm in order to learn? That's where cultivating "Kyokan Connections" comes in.
If you've read "About" me and the business name, "Kyokan Connections", you'll know that "Kyokan" means "empathetic" (in Japanese). The cornerstone of my practice is empathy - offering it, teaching it and nurturing it in parents so that children can regulate their emotions as a foundation for much more learning and development. When parents are able to offer empathy to a child who is struggling to be "calm" - real empathy - the child will grow and develop more skills than the parent might imagine possible. And since it's hard to be empathetic and frustrated at the same time, staying calm is key.
If you're interested in learning to stay calm and learn to be empathic with your child when they're in distress, Click here to request a FREE PDF booklet to help you hack this important skill. If you're ready to take things further and help your child learn to stay calm and problem solve, click here to enroll in The Attuned Caregiver - Parent Workshop, (currently available as an individual 4-hour intensive training program for parents). Both resources will help you help you break down the process into smaller, manageable steps and offer empathy for growth and development - yours and your child's!