My little guy had a tantrum on the way home from VBS. I felt compelled to pull over the car and handle the situation, but a peace came over me and the Holy Spirit directed me on how to best handle the situation.
I did not know what I needed to do specifically, but I knew a different approach needed to be implemented. Well, three toys in the giveaway bag later, the situation was resolved and had a lasting impact on my son; and this Mommy felt like a warrior princess just by being obedient to the Holy Spirit.
When we arrived home, I sat my son down and explained that his tantrum was unacceptable and the consequence was to pick three toys from his toy chest and place in the giveaway bag by the front door. He was beyond devastated, but I was okay (and calm). The three toys he chose and cried over were toys he barely, if ever, play with. His strong emotion was because he had to get rid of something (he thought was) near and dear to him. Sidebar: my husband and I have rarely given away toys since our son and daughter’s births, so you can imagine the many toys we have around our home (and those small pieces)!
Fast forward to today, my son has forgotten about those three toys, and his behavior has been great overall, especially with regards to him getting easily frustrated. You must understand that I am dealing with a toddler who needs constant grace and reminders of acceptable behavior, so “the look” I have been giving him has worked wonders because he knows what the consequence will be.
I felt so proud of myself of how I handled the situation and was more pleased with the results. After my son placed those three toys in the giveaway bag, I was reminded of a few tips from Chapter 3, Planning and Simplicity, in Grace not Perfection by Emily Ley, our featured Bible Study Book Club Series book. Emily Ley reminds us to simplify and declutter and that “Physical clutter is mental clutter.”
Three toys later I felt liberated! Even though this method was a great way to discipline my toddler, I know that a successful decluttering project will make my home an environment of peace and organization versus one of chaos. My goal is to declutter our home as much as possible as we prepare for the arrival of our third child. May physical declutter result in mental declutter!
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