Parenting Isn't Easy
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As much as every mother would like to have nothing but days of sunshine and picnics, it's just not realistic. As a human, days can become consumed with busy errands, arguments, pressure, and frustration. Unfortunately, this frustration can sometimes be directed at the children in the home. It's important for us, as parents, to keep in mind that a little human isn't capable of handling their own emotions well enough to handle an adults emotions along with them, which is why it's so important to practice patience in every interaction you have with your child. This isn't always easy to do, especially when there are calls to make, dinner to plan, kids to pick up, and a work schedule to write.
There are some great techniques out there that parents can use to help them not to be an "angry parent." One of those techniques is the infamous "hair tie trick" started by Kelly Holmes.
The Hair Tie Trick
Kelly Holmes from "The (Reformed) Idealist Mom" was the one who came up with the hair tie trick, but one of her readers, Shauna Harvey, was the one who made it go viral by posting about it on Facebook. “Today, I tried something new,” wrote Harvey. Kelly had some helpful advice for her readers that could help them to become less angry mothers. According to her advice, Kelly put five hair ties on her wrist. Her daily goal is to end every day with those five hair ties still on her wrist. Every time she said something out of anger, or was less than patient with her little ones, she would move a hair tie to the opposite wrist. To earn the tie back, she would have to say something loving to her children and complete five loving interactions.
“Research shows that to have a healthy relationship, for every one negative interaction you need 5 positive interactions to balance that out," explained Kelly Holmes. “It’s called the Magic 5:1 Ratio," she continued. The idea behind the Magic 5:1 Ratio is that every negative interaction you have with your little one (which is inevitable because parenting is difficult) should be followed by five positive interactions. These types of interactions include: telling them how awesome they are, dancing in the living room, painting together, and many other things!
An Immediate Difference
Donnie Ray Jones
After the first day of trying out the hair trick, Shauna Harvey was hopeful. “I have finished the day with all 5 bands on the original wrist. I'm very proud of myself for exercising patience with him. I know it's only day 1 but I'm hopeful this will help our communication skills and our relationship," she said. In Kelly's original post, she explained why she had started changing the way that she was interacting with her daughter. “Unfortunately for me, I’d developed a bad habit of talking sharply to my preschooler. My brain was on autopilot headed in the wrong direction towards being an angry mother," she recalled. As soon as she started doing the hair tie trick, Kelly quickly noticed a positive influence on how she spoke to her little one. "Months later, the hair tie hack is still working wonders. I talk to my preschooler with love and kindness in my voice instead of annoyance and frustration," wrote Kelly.
KCCINews / Twitter
Parents.com spoke to Kelly about why her hair tie trick had gone viral. She responded with: "As parents, we crave a healthy, connected relationship with our little ones. But in the chaos of modern parenting life, we can get frustrated easily and that puts a strain on our relationship with our kids. The hair ties are a simple, visible reminder to catch ourselves before we get off track. And because we're human, it's possible to ‘earn’ the hair ties back to repair the relationship after we slip up.” Kelly has also provided printables on her website that will teach parents how to come up with positive interactions that they can use against negative interactions.