Your Attitude Stinks


A few weeks ago, I found myself disciplining one of my girls and I told her, “Your attitude stinks lately!”. She had been short-tempered, crabby, negative, and just downright unpleasant to be around. As I sat down to talk to her she instantly had several reasons to justify her bad attitude based on her sister’s actions…

“She’s not being nice to me.”

“She’s not playing the game right.”

“I just want to play by myself.”

I explained to her, as I have several times before, that we can only control our own actions, they should be independent of how we’re being treated, and that we should always treat people (especially those we love) kindly. She acknowledged that she understood what I said and the rest of the day seemed to be a bit better.

Later that night, after my husband and I had put the kids to bed, I felt a little overwhelmed about my lingering “to-do” list I had made that morning. I went to work finishing kitchen clean-up, folding laundry, pulling schoolwork for the next day, sweeping the floor, straightening the living room…all while my husband sat on the couch. I felt myself getting upset at him for not offering to help, upset that he didn’t notice that I wasn’t sitting down relaxing with him, and upset with myself that I can’t ignore the mess and just sit down.

When my husband did notice me still working on chores, likely because I was not being particularly quiet, he asked if he could help me and my attitude towards him stunk! I was short-tempered, crabby, negative and just downright unpleasant to be around. But I justified it (in my head) telling myself…

“He’s not being nice to me.”

“He’s not helping me.”

“I’ll just do it myself.”

Then I remembered my conversation with my daughter earlier in the day. Wow, talk about practicing what you preach. I apologized to my husband and told him that I should have controlled my reaction better and that I should not take out my frustrations him. Over the next few weeks I was intentional with my attitude towards my husband and girls. During this time I noticed a HUGE shift in my daughter’s attitudes as well. When I am even-tempered, kind and pleasant to be around they reflect that attitude towards each other and us. It’s not always perfect, on my end or my kids, but I do think as mother’s when we are short-tempered, crabby and unpleasant to be around our family will likely follow our “lead”.


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