Friday, December 6, 2013

MOPS: Controlling Your Emotions

Before I get into my MOPS notes...
If you haven't checked out my "A Memory Apart" book review/giveaway,
you should check it out then enter to win a copy of the eBook & a $25 Amazon giftcard!
If you've already read the book or romances aren't your thing
you can always give it as a gift to somebody (;

Alrighty, so yesterday at MOPS we got to watch a video.
In said video, Lysa TerKeurst talked about controlling our emotions.
She talked about how difficult it is to do this,
but also how we can learn to make it easier.

Here are my notes:
Conflict happens when we feel either exposed or opposed.
These situations can lead to chaotic feelings.
When conflict occurs, we have a choice right before we react.

Most reactions can be categorized under the following 4 reaction types:
1. Exploders that blame others
2. Exploders that shame themselves
3. Stuffers that build barriers
4. Stuffers that collect retaliation rocks

Our reaction types may vary depending on who we are reacting to.
Child, spouse, parent, friend, acquaintance, church leader, etc...
In other words, we have different reactions with different people.

If you are an exploder that blames others
- This type of exploder expresses their anger in the heat of the moment,
then finds someone else to blame for their emotional reaction.
- Remind yourself to pause before you react.
- Don't attack the person, address the issue instead.
- Ask yourself if you would let someone else see you reacting in this way.

If you are an exploder that shames yourself
- This type of exploder expresses their anger in the heat of the moment,
then later puts a guilt trip on themselves,
making themselves feel terrible for not handling it differently.
- Bring some perspective before reacting.
- Ask yourself, "If this is the worst thing that happens today will it be the worst day ever,
or will it be a pretty good day?"

If you are a stuffer that builds barriers
- This type of stuffer often doesn't know how to address conflict or perhaps doesn't want to.
- Instead of saying "I'm fine" then stuffing your emotions internally,
establish a boundary by continuing to communicate.
- Let go of bottling things up & pretending things are okay.
- Resolving the conflict the right way feels much better than keeping it all in.

If you are a stuffer that collects retaliation rocks
- This type of stuffer keeps things inside when upset to try & keep the peace,
but later lets out each of their frustrations when least expected.
- You may tend to hear something one way that was meant a different way
& stash away false impressions of what happened to use against someone.
- Before reacting, ask yourself if you are trying to prove that you are right
or are you trying to improve your relationship.

If you want to learn more about the different types of reactors
or just want to improve your communication,
I suggest reading Lysa TerKeurst's book, "Unglued".
Although I have not yet read it,
I heard so many wonderful things about it yesterday at MOPS.
Here's a cool author interview I found about the book...

After watching the video,
we had a little discussion about what we learned.
Sheri Carlstrom is one of the amazing mentor moms in our MOPS group.
That's right, she's one of the wonderful ladies that contributed to the best advice from experienced moms.
I want to share some words of wisdom that she said yesterday that stuck with me.
"It's better to react when you have emotional reserve, rather than when you have nothing."
There is so much truth in those words.

After Sheri talked with us for a little bit, we talked within our little discussion groups.
Another book was mentioned that I will definitely have to check out...
"Boundaries with Kids" by Dr Henry Cloud & Dr John Townsend.
I have a wonderful bunch of ladies in my 'purple group'.
They are always great at listening, giving advice, & just being there.
A huge thank you to everyone who listened to me vent yesterday.
You have no idea how much I appreciated it!
I was able to confront the issue happy & head on yesterday,
& things have been great ever since... (:
You are all so awesome!

In summary, what I learned:
Respond instead of react.
Handle the emotions that create the conflict rather than the conflict itself.

Keep in mind that all of my notes above are my own thoughts about what I heard
& they are not necessarily word for word.

I've already put these tips into practice & noticed a HUGE difference.
I challenge you to do the same!

Other great MOPS posts in case you missed them:

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  1. I read Henry Cloud's "Boundaries" ( about a year and a half ago and found it incredibly helpful. I'll definitely have to check out his one for kids too!

  2. Thanks, Marissa. Pulled out my unread copy of Unglued yesterday!

  3. I love that you are sharing what you learn. I wish so bad I had MOPS when my kidlets were younger. Keep it up.



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