The Five Second Rule

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So I have to tell you about the five second rule. This is not the rule about food on the floor. In our house that’s more like the five minute rule…or sometimes the five month rule if I’m honest. *sighs* Anyway, this is something I’ve tried out this week and it has really helped the emotional climate of this house. I wait five seconds before I react to anything. Pretty simple right? Should be, but not so much in certain situations. There are certain situations that I experience, on far too regular a basis, that was pushing my buttons where I would lose my cool and throw a grown up tantrum. I know, sexy right? But probably not the example I want to set for my kids. Can’t really tell them not to yell at their sister or brother when they’re mad if that’s what I do. Sooooo…I count for five seconds and then react. Amazingly five seconds is enough to assemble some logical thought that isn’t some primal reaction to the aggravation I am experiencing. In other words, I look like a patient and loving mother instead of a monkey throwing poo. I don’t always remember…but the longer I stick with it, the better I get at it. Here are some examples of situations where the five second rule has been exceptionally helpful. Two minutes after picking up the entire house the girls dump their entire toy box out and randomly throw toys at various sections of the living room. How about when you open the washer and discover white fluffy bits all over the clothes and then realize some small child had chucked a (thankfully) unused diaper in with their clothes in their laundry hamper. Getting up to screaming for the third time that night and why? Because Sasquatch was angry at her blanket. (her exact words) Trying to “use the facilities” and being interrupted in the middle by screaming like someone’s dying. Because apparently her nine month old brother wouldn’t climb into bed with her. These are just examples where the five second rule not only kept me calm…but may have saved the lives of one or more of my children. It even works with dogs! Like waking up and stepping out of the bedroom…straight into dog puke.
If you already have a handle on your emotions, good for you. But for those of you, like me, who struggle with keeping your cool in the midst of chaos, I highly recommend this.

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