The real truth about yoga teachers (at least this one) is that we really need it. 

You might be surprised to know that I’m not a naturally calm, zen person. In fact, along with a lot of great stuff, I inherited quite a temper from my parents and ancestors. I came to yoga and meditation because I really needed it. 

And I still do. 

Last week my 7-year old had a big emotional storm. 

I was being easy-going mama, saying okay to screen time before dinner. My 7-year old begs for “one more game.” We have a few more minutes, so no problem. 

Then, problem.

She doesn’t want to stop. Doesn’t want to set the table. Her voice escalates. But it was the meal (that I had made, of course), that threw her over the edge. 

Tears. Screams. Dinner is disgusting. 

As all this happened, I go from easy-going to annoyed. From annoyed to downright irritated. How about a little appreciation? 

Finally, with mutterings she sits. Tells daddy how mean mommy is for making such a disgusting meal. 

Ka-boom! I lose it. 

My anger rose up so fast that (I’m not proud of this) I literally pounded my silverware on the table like a cliche TV-show dad.

I yelled.

I stormed out. 

Hello again, anger. 

In that moment, I was victim to my temper. Much like my daughter, I wasn’t able to access the space to pause. Mommy temper-tantrum. 

But, my practice still helped. Here’s why: 

Meditation and yoga help us develop two things:

  1. calm abiding, or equanimity
  2. clear seeing, or awareness 

Calm abiding is an inner equanimity that is nurtured over time. It means we have the capacity to self-soothe. We love ourselves. We value and esteem ourselves at the core. With calm abiding, clear seeing naturally arises over time. 

Calm abiding + living with kids = clear seeing.

Living with kids reveals those places we still have to work through. We get triggered. This is an opportunity to learn about ourselves. To develop clear seeing.

Practicing meditation and yoga doesn’t mean we become perfect. Clear seeing helps us to see and accept that. Calm abiding and clear seeing help us accept our human limitations with compassion. {Click to Tweet!}


My practice helped because I didn’t condemn myself for my anger. I didn’t indulge in inner shame. Shame is a form of self-hatred. It doesn’t help us grow. 

When we expect ourselves to be perfect, we judge and shame ourselves for our screw-ups. When we practice judgement and shaming ourselves, we also judge and shame our kids. 

We have to practice in ourselves what we want our kids to learn.

If we want them to love themselves, then we must love ourselves (it can be practiced). If we want them to respect themselves and others, then we must respect ourselves. If we want them to be compassionate to themselves and others, then we must practice self-compassion. 

So what did I do at that dinner table?

I took a timeout in my room to calm down. I stayed there for a while. Then I came back and sincerely apologised. 

I’m not proud that I yelled. But I will not add shame and guilt to the story. It is an opportunity to learn about myself. To learn about my anger. With this awareness, the next time the seeds of anger are watered in me, I can take care of it better . 

In the meantime, I will continue to water the seeds of peace and equanimity in me, so they grow and become stronger. 

water the seeds of peace

How do your kids help you learn? Please share in the comments below. 

Thank you so much for reading.  I hope that you got something out of my sharing. Please take the time to share this with your friends. 

I’ll look for you in the comments.

With warmth & lovingkindness,


PS.  My Yoga Mama Home Practice video package is here! Go ahead and subscribe to my weekly newsletter so that you can get in on the insider pre-sale

PPS.  I’m putting my response to a private message about this post from a dear friend here because I know others will have the same question. My friend wonders:

What do we do to get passed the “pissed” part to get to the “teaching moment” part?

You are wondering – how we can handle this kind of situation better? How do we not get pissed? Every situation is unique, but I’ll give it a stab.

Well, getting angry means that some old wound in us was hurt. Maybe we weren’t heard or appreciated enough at some point. Whatever the reason is, the best thing to do is notice the anger/frustration as it arises (before explosion!).

In my situation, I was doing a bunch of things to get dinner on the table, so I didn’t take time to pause when I started feeling irritated. Probably a better choice would have been to turn the burners off and take my time out to chill out sooner. That way I could have breathed and taken care of my irritation. Looked at where the irritation is coming from.

The emotions – the anger and irritation come from inside me. I take responsibility for them. I have an idea in my head about how things “should” be. How my kids “should” behave. I wasn’t accepting what was happening in that moment.

I hope this helps.