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Control your Impulse

Impulse controlThis blog post has been contributed by Rashmi Mantri, Mumbai.

Not long ago, I bought a puppy for my children just to show them my love. And very soon I returned the puppy, after suffering sleepless nights. My decision, taken emotionally, had an unpleasant outcome. I wanted to do something that would make my children happy; on the contrary, I broke their heart. If only I had weighed the consequences, and pros and cons of my actions. It was my impulsive side which did not let me see the after-effects of my actions.

An impulsive action always looks positive for the moment, but once the moment has passed, the future could turn out negative.

When I realized that my impulsive behavior can impact my children, I decided to control my impulsive responses right there. I have tried to summarize my understanding of Impulsive Behavior  below:

What does ‘Impulsive’ mean?

In physics, Impulsive force is defined as a force which acts on an object for a very short interval during a collision or explosion. It is equal to the change in momentum per unit time. The definition stands true for impulsive behavior too; here the force is the reaction that we experience on ourselves or others, which lasts for a short time.

There are many kinds of impulsive reactions, for example, impulsive talking, shopping, drinking, hitting, screaming, and driving, to name a few. Learning to control our impulses is a basic life skill which we should all teach our children and ourselves too.

Why control Impulse?

Impulsive behavior can lead to lot of problems and regrets later.

Reviewing our choices from every angle ensures peace of mind in the future. Later on the options may no longer be available or even possible. Most impulsive actions give us happiness only for some time and can slowly lead toward regret and unhappiness. People often confuse spontaneous and impulsive as similar. A spontaneous decision liberates us and brings us joy whereas an impulsive one just satisfies our ego for that moment.

How to control our Impulses:

Discipline: Discipline plays a crucial role in regulating your impulsive decisions. If you have an organized lifestyle, your thought process also works in the same direction.

Focus:  Focus on what you want rather than what you crave or desire for.  Like, in the case of impulsive screaming, you can focus on the solution rather than screaming and making things worse. If it still gets out of control, leave that scene and go somewhere else.


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ParentEdge is a bi-monthly magazine for discerning Indian parents who would like to actively contribute to their children’s education, intellectual enrichment and stimulation. The magazine’s premise is that learning is a continuous process, and needs to happen both in and outside of school; thus parents have an important role to play in shaping their children’s interests and intellect.

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