Do It Yourself April 2015

Moms Rule! Gain more empathy for your hard work

Mothers have a unique and difficult job: they work hard to raise a family, maintain a household, juggle many other obligations, and oftentimes balance a career. Mothers put themselves last – working tirelessly to meet the needs of others while sometimes ignoring their own wants and desires. While working to accomplish everything on their plates, moms often stifle their true feelings or use passive aggression to get what they want or need. In honor of Mother’s Day, WINGS has an early gift for all mothers out there to help them express their emotions and empower others to help them. And, it’s a great tool for any non-moms too!

At WINGS we use a behavior management technique called, “State Your Feelings Strongly.” This means exactly that, say how you feel. Instead of holding in your emotions or getting upset with your significant other or children, state exactly how you feel and allow them to consider your emotions and then react appropriately. It helps others to step into your shoes and build empathy to recognize how you are really feeling. It then allows them to make a choice to change the behavior without you having to harp or nag at them.

Here are just a few examples to get you started:

  • Children are arguing in the car→ “I’m overwhelmed with all this arguing I can barely concentrate on driving and getting us safely home.”
  • Significant other walks right past clean laundry that needs to be put away → “I’m frustrated that you would walk right past the clean clothes when I already did the laundry and folded it.”
  • Child brings home a good grade on a test → “I am so proud of you. I know how hard you have been working this week to study.”
  • Child doesn’t want to finish vegetables at dinner → “I am disappointed. I worked really hard to make sure you had something healthy to eat with dinner.”
  • Significant other plans a date night without the kids → “I am so excited. I really needed a night out and am so appreciative that you planned something!”

As you begin to clearly state your feelings to help your family build empathy, hopefully you begin to feel more supported in your role as Mom and better able to handle all that gets tossed your way. Keep up the great work moms and Happy Mother’s Day!