How to Cool Your Temper (Plus a bonus parenting tip)

How to Cool Your Temper (Plus a bonus parenting tip)


As I was tucking my eleven-year-old son into bed tonight, he wanted me to sit with him. I told him I could for a minute but I also needed to do some things for work. He asked me what I had to do and I told him I needed to write a blog post about something that could help people. “Do you want me to give you some ideas of what to write about?” he asked. “Sure!” I answered back. He started listing quite a few ideas and I realized he had some great thoughts! We narrowed it down to the idea of how to cool your temper. My son has struggled with anger issues from a fairly young age and I was interested to hear what he had to say. Here are some ideas we came up with together:

  • Talk about it with somebody
  • Have a cool down space
  • Use empathy–try to take the other person’s perspective
  • Think about the possible effects of your actions/words
  • Release your frustration through exercise
  • Squeeze a stress ball until you feel calm
  • Take deep breaths (Check out how to practice belly breathing here)
  • Think about the things you can do or the things you are grateful for

As we talked about these ideas, I realized that my son does use these strategies often and they have helped him to manage his anger better over the years. After we discussed the ideas, he said, “You know what, Mom? I feel proud. Let me know if you need any other ideas.” This is where the bonus parenting lesson came in for me. I learned a couple of things. First, my kids do listen and learn over time. They are absorbing what we teach them even if we don’t realize it. Second, I learned to ask my kids for their insight and their thoughts even if I think they might be too young. I was surprised how much insight my son had to share. So, next time your anger flares, use the tips above to help you cool your temper and ask your kids for their thoughts, too. Slow down and ask–you’ll be surprised what they have to offer.

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