Why we can’t talk about Anything anymore…

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I love hearing other people’s ideas, thoughts and suggestions. Why? Because I know that maybe, just maybe I don’t know everything about everything… I know shock right? There is so much to learn from other people and I think we can learn a lot more from people than we would from books (that was painful for me to say… as I love my books).

I am going to be honest… I had a strange weekend. My son, who has sensory issues was quite highly strung and I was having to use a lot of patience being able to work with him. He was discussing his goals with me about wanting to make $10 more to pay for a LEGO set he had wanted. I told him how I could not give him $10 in one day for chores… I was going to suggest other options but instead he reacted before I could get there – strongly. His words were “You don’t care about my goals, or that I would like to try to buy Continue reading “Why we can’t talk about Anything anymore…”

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The Advantage of Outrage.

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We have developed a system of outrage. I could point the fingers at the many reasons why this is becoming the norm and who has contributed to this but it seems like the outrage isn’t stopping and it is becoming worse each day.

There is an advantage of having a society that is full of outrage: Society can be controlled by it.

There was a situation in Australian Survivor series (2017) when a male contestant thought that he had upset a female contestant. He had told her information that was to get her angry. He says words to the camera that go a little something like this “I’m feeding her anger, because if she’s angry, I can control her, and control her vote”. It was a bit of a light bulb moment for me. It was never so clear to me as it was in that moment – that people will use the worst emotions to manipulate and change a situation. The female contestant explains to the camera later in the show how she was faking anger to make the male contestant think he was controlling her.

With social media there is opportunity for outrage everywhere. The good news is we can use social media to shed light on many difficult and painful situations around the world that would normally be ignored, and bring it into the public. The outrage of this unfair and painful situation can bring about effective change. This is a brilliant strategy to make the world a better place. It’s useful. It betters bad situations.

The downfall is when we become outraged over anything and everything: “uncontrolled outrage”. We get used to being in a state of outrage – or calling people out about anything and everything. There is an short-term advantage to this too, but added long term harmful consequences: The advantage is that outrage can prove to be a distraction from our own difficult lives, things we don’t want to face. Outrage with others does not allow us to focus on our own situations that need improvement. This, in the long term, will harm us.

One of the best ways to be an contributing member of society is to look in the mirror (I really want to break out into that Michael Jackson song), and make changes to who we are and to better ourselves.
One of the ways we can help us survive this time of outrage is to be balanced with it. Yes, we should be outraged with the horrible things in the world, but we also must keep ourselves in check so we don’t allow that outrage to control us. Anger and outrage are emotions used to control, and we must be careful with it so we don’t cause more damage and pain to others by those emotions.

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How this exercise can help your child with their emotions

 

colours

So my sensory son has benefited greatly recently from a major exercise from his Occupational Therapist. It’s when we assign colors to emotions.

  • Blue represents sadness, or sickness, feeling unhappy, or things that make you unhappy.
  • Red represents anger, Yelling, screaming or anything that upsets you greatly.
  • Yellow represents that moment before anger, feeling annoyed – or even feeling silly, on the edge, or recognizing something that may annoy you.
  • Green represents happiness, joy, anything that helps you feel good about yourself.

My son, who isn’t very understanding about his emotions but is very visual can understand this explanation of feelings so much better than just labels. It helps when we are in public too, where I can say “I can tell you are in the ‘yellow zone’, what can we do to get green again?”

I’m an auditory learner, and to me this was very silly at first but it really works for children who need extra help with their emotions and are visual learners.

We then have asked him many questions (when he is in the Green zone) of what makes him feel green… if he is in the yellow, what can he do to help himself get to the green.

He has come up with exercises on his own, but the OT has helped him understand about counting, and pushing against the wall, breathing exercises- tools he wasn’t aware of, that has helped him.

Other exercises he has included is “getting a drink of water”, “going for a walk” (which he is allowed to do by most teachers), to help him stay calm. HE is also a big fan of drawing, and even drawing out his feelings is easier for him than expressing them in any other way.

We have posters around our house of “expressions” of people in each of these zones so he can recognize them in himself (and others) a lot easier.

He is soon to start Grade 3 on Monday, and I as a parent has a lot of anxiety about starting with a new teacher and knowing how much it takes for him to adjust so we are revising these colors so much before then.

Let me know if you have a similar method or something else that helps you. We need all the tools we can get to cope and adjust to this world.

God Bless