Monday, December 28, 2009

Stop, Drop and Roll! (How to Deal with a Conflict!)

Dear friends,

I'm about to start teaching the Young Peacemaker curriculum in my home school co-op English class.   Meanwhile, here is something I came up with several years ago to teach my own kids.  It's just as good for moms! (This is an excerpt from my book The Real Life Home School Mom, which is available for free download in the sidebar of my main blog,


Here is another idea for moms who are trying to be peacemakers: Stop, Drop and Roll. Given the sheer size of my family, there is a high probability that someone will be involved in an unpleasant confrontational conversation (argument) in a given day. A mom needs a way to deal with all this and not get overloaded. Here's a quick explanation of something that helps me keep my sanity when conflicts arise. I developed this concept from the standard "what to do when you clothes catch on fire" Stop-Drop-and-Roll instructions. Think of a conflict as a fire that is about to burn you up. If you thrash around wildly or run away, the oxygen is going to feed the flames. You've got to stop, drop and roll.

STOP: When you find your temper flaring, your jaw clenched, your muscles tense, STOP! Don't yell, nag, threaten, accuse, slam doors or otherwise lose it. You've seen the red warning flag, so STOP! "Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires." (James 1:19, NIV)

DROP: You've got resentment, bitterness, frustration roiling around inside. It's a burden, and a heavy one at that. You're going to have to lay it down eventually -- why not RIGHT NOW? Drop your burden at the feet of Jesus. "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7, NIV) You don't have to carry it one minute longer. Forgive!

ROLL: Get on with it. If there is a solution to your conflict, work it out calmly, paying special attention to preventing a recurrence of the same problem in the future. After that, go about your business and don't let the whole thing stop you in your tracks or cause you to stew. You've got a life to live! "Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:13-14, ESV)

When I remember to Stop, Drop and Roll, it helps me solve problems much more effectively and efficiently. I also don't carry around frustration quite as long, which makes me more productive the rest of the day.


  1. This is a great idea! My "mommy anger" has been an issue since my kids were little - I wish I had been able to control it better, but "I'm forgetting what lies, behind and pressing ontoward the future" and that future looks better these days. Now, our major issue is more with sibling rivalry - my husband is a fireman, so your suggestion will really hit home with our kiddos and we have been implementing more Bible memory as well! I'm printing up a little "quote" to put in our home, so we can all see it as we go about our days. And hopefully, we will remember to: STOP! DROP! and ROLL!

  2. Thank you for your comment! Anger is an issue here, too, so I have to remind myself too. :-)


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