#LaughMore to let go of worry

If laughter is the best medicine, how can you let your guard down to be silly and make things fun with your family? Here’s the harder question: how do you lighten up when you want to shake your child for not listening or put your fist through the wall out of anger?

yell less as a parentThe answer lies in being smarter than the situation is allowing you to be. Your animal instinct isn’t going to do it for you. You will need to be smarter than that. By smarter, I don’t mean your GPA or IQ.

I am talking about two different kinds of intelligence: EQ and SQ. A challenging spreadsheet or homework assignment requires IQ. A challenging situation with another person or parenting a child requires Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and Social Intelligence (SQ).

How do you recognize, manage, and use your emotions effectively? How well do you read the social situation and the dynamics in the room? Daniel Goleman, introducing his book Emotional Intelligence, stated Aristotle’s Challenge:

“Anyone can become angry. That is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way. This is not easy.”

Read that again and you may recognize two things: first, how big a challenge this sets for you and, secondly, how Aristotle’s Challenge is all about managing yourself.

I think a modern version of Aristotle’s Challenge would involve worry and anxiety. Especially as it pertains to parents. Robert’s Challenge might sound like:

Worry is all around you. It is going to happen as a parent. But to be able to worry the right amount, about the right things, and in constructive ways. This is not so easy.

I think the one secret to unlocking Aristotle’s Challenge (anger) is humor and laughter. The secret to confronting Robert’s Challenge (anxiety) is the art of letting go.


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