• Mona Cooley

Parking Your Emotions

Parking your emotions when a situation is heated can be done. I didn’t realize that I was doing this when, for once, as my daughter was telling me what I should be doing about a certain situation with other family members, I stopped what I was doing and paid attention to her instead of continuing with the task at hand. After she was done telling me what I should be doing about this situation, I reminded her, CALMLY YET FIRMLY, that they were adults and I was not about to tell anyone what they should or should not do. She replied “if you don’t , I will”. I warned her to be prepared for the consequences of telling what others to do. Interestingly, she did not pursue it any further.

But she was frustrated with me because I wouldn’t do what she wanted me to do. She expressed her frustration to her husband. He supported my decision and reminded her that it was up to her to deal with the situation, as it was ‘her’ situation.

I was also frustrated! But what I had learned through trial and error, during her outbursts of emotions, was to stay calm, listen, set boundaries and put it back to her whether she wanted to pursue what she wanted done. Prior to this, I would have reacted instead of listening. Plus, my body language, tone and words of frustration would have added fuel to fire of emotions. Because I was calm, my body language, tone and firmness in words made it clear that I was confident and would follow through with what I said I would or would not do. As a result of that episode, my daughter now approaches me differently because I have demonstrated what is or isn’t acceptable.

Remember, park your emotions while in a heated situation and then, if needed, release them through journaling or talking it through with someone who will listen, allowing you to express and thereby acknowledge your emotions. The results will be less conflict, more calmness and better results.

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