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They Do As They See

We all mean well as parents. Well most of us. We mess up trying to overcompensate for the advantages we didn’t have as children. We spoil them and we coddle them when all they really need is our undivided attention and our faith in them. But the one thing many of us seem to overlook is that how we treat ourselves shows them how to treat themselves. And that is only a good story if we are good to ourselves.

There is a woman at the exercise gym I belong to who teaches several fitness classes. And her hyper self-loathing comes out when she talks about her body. And we all disagree with her but she judges herself so harshly. And she has a daughter and two sons.They Do As They See on Shalavee.com

I have busted myself for self-bullying within the past year so I am very empathetic to this pattern of behavior. Both societal messages of women’s worth and our inherited ancestral low self-esteem have conspired against us to create these running dialogues. Damaging enough until we consider that, unchecked, we will pass these hateful messages on to our daughters. Because they do what they see, not what we tell them to do. They respond to the mirrors we have of ourselves as much if not more than the mirrors of love and worth we think we’re doing so well to reflect to them.They Do As They See on Shalavee.com

The opposite of hate is love. The opposite of judgment is compassion. If we can even be aware of what we are doing to ourselves and talk with our daughters about their amazing value as thinkers and kind and creative souls then we could change the tide of self-bullying. To show our children, boys and girls, what it means to be human and compassionate and honest is truly the kind of parenting we want to be doing instead.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

A Few Thoughts On Mother’s Day

All-consuming, persistent, relentless, and unforgiving. Motherhood is 365 days per year of these and many more words, flattering and not. One day to recognize all of this feels cheesy. But then Christmas feels all too short to celebrate our oneness with Gratitude and salvation.

We’ll be celebrating more Mother’s day next weekend as my husband had to work this weekend. And honestly, the kids are cute and smart but they’ll only take as much initiative as they’re told to when it comes to Mother recognition. So my thought is, we as mothers and women who devote themselves to people and causes, we need to stop and make sure we thank ourselves too.My thoughts on Mother's Day on Shalavee.com

Stop and check in and make sure that everything you give is also coming back to yourself. Do you appreciate you and your efforts? Are you proud of yourself and go willingly on to your next task? Because if you feel resentful, there’s some chats you may need to have with you and maybe a talking doctor about those feelings.

 

There are days I drop words of comfort on myself like falling leaves and remember that it is enough to be taken care of by myself.” ~ Brian Andreas

 

My thoughts on Mother's Day on Shalavee.com

Children don’t have to always be grateful. They did not ask to be born and will eventually own the ability to appreciate us. In the meantime, we hold them with grace and understanding and we model and encourage their gratitude with the faith that one day, they will be brimming with it. And we treat ourselves with the kindnesses and grace of life that our beautiful birth mothers gave us. And that our own inner mothers continue to gift us.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Why Make the Effort?

When you don’t feel you are worth it, like the effort to go to the doctor or make those changes to your diet or get more education for a better paying job, why and who you are making the effort for may be your key to motivation.

You don’t value yourself enough for the effort?

So be it.Why Make the Effort? on Shalavee.com

But if you have children, their needs for your best You always trump everything.

Your why is always your key to getting your life done. And if you have kids, they are a bigger why than we even realize. They are witnessing everything that we do and say. They are watching, learning, and emulating the way we treat ourselves. And if they see us disregarding our bodies, allowing our boundaries to be bulldozed, and generally treating ourselves as if we are not worth it… they will do the same to themselves.

It’s a fact Jack.

“Do as I say not as I do” are the old rotted roots plunged into and holding onto these behaviors.Why Make the Effort? on Shalavee.com

But how can you tell your children they are the best thing since sliced bread and then discredit the source of this compliment by allowing yourself to be treated as less.

The number one reason to value yourself is the shadow you cast. You are not as invisible as you think. When they try to bully me, I stand up for myself to my children for this reason alone. Because I want them to remember that I valued myself and my time enough to say not now. And I always keep my word to them and myself that my word is always true and valuable. I trust that I am strong for all of us until they are too.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

Body Buddy

When my son was little, if I saw he was doing something that would hurt himself intentionally, I’d say, “Don’t hurt my friend”. I say this to my daughter as well. The idea is that I care about them as much as I would a friend seems to be not as obligatory but a choice to care about them. I love each as a buddy and friend and as children.

The more I learn about self-care and self-trust, the more I know I need to teach my daughter how to self-soothe and be there for herself instead of looking for the comfort and acceptance outside herself through drugs, food, or sex perhaps. Seems such a simple concept yet no one ever pointed out my duty to take care of myself in this way.

And then the other day, I was explaining the bracelet on my wrist was my friendship bracelet to myself. That before I could be a good friend to anyone else, I needed to be my own friend first. And Fiona thought about this and agreed and said, “We can have our own Body Buddy.” I gasped at the simple brilliance of this concept and asked if I could use the phrase. She agreed to let me.Body Buddy on Shalavee.com

Imagine if we were all allowed and encouraged to be our own friends from when we were small. That this friendship would allow more self-compassion and thus less self-hatred. What if we didn’t hate our bodies and accepted our differences as beautiful? That we could then have more love and compassion for our fellow humans and less judgement because we knew ourselves well enough. Imagine the rooting of self-trust that would allow us to take bigger and better risks because we knew we always had our own backs in the end even if we failed. 

The opposites of anxiety and depression is love and trust and connection. It makes complete sense that in giving our next generation solid sense of self and tolerance for our humanity, we are raising people who can make better decisions on behalf of humanity. If this is my only contribution, let it be the best I can give. Let my children know themselves and have faith in their own body buddy. Let my daughter be visible to herself and need no one to give her what she can give herself.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Does “Self-respecting” Describe the Parent and Self-parent You Are?

My daughter is just starting elementary school now in Pre-K. I am again besieged by notifications and permission slips galore just like back when Eamon was in Kindergarten and there was “homework”. See my recent repost of my piece Kindergarten Homework here. All sorts of good intentions being bantered back and forth between educator and parent about how to best raise/educate our kids.

Within a hunk of papers distributed by the school this week, a subscription newsletter from a parents-institute, I read this headline:

“Parents Must Encourage their Children to Develop Self-respect”

Does “Self-respecting” Describe the Parent and Self-parent You Are? on Shalavee.com

( I immediately thought, Well yes, and what about those parents who already see educators as bossy jackasses thinking, “you can’t tell me what I must do with my kids because I’m not going to be bossed by smartass educational type people”. Shut that down.)

Of course I knew it was well-meant and read further. Essentially, children who are disrespectful don’t have any self-respect. Sometimes that’s what hides behind lack of respect for authorities. If we don’t value ourselves, we’re certainly not valuing others. And eventually the justice system needs to show us our worth. This is what the article said self-respect came down to being composed of.

Self-respect comes from:

Competence – Being good at things makes your kid feel good. Children need lots of opportunities to master skills and feel good about themselves while they do. New skills from sports to art to chores can give them a chance to like themselves while they master those skills. And no one standing over them telling what a bad job they did either.

Accomplishments – They need their progress seen and noted.By everyone but mostly by parents. See above.

Confidence – This can be about pointing out how all the work paid off and acceptance that sometimes we falter to succeed. Mistakes can be learned from and we need to know we can rely on ourselves to make things happen.

Freedom – Allow kids to be independent and make their own age-appropriate choices. Let them chose when things can be done and how sometimes. Showing them you trust them makes them trust them.

Support – Accept your children for who and what they are. Let them belong to the family instead of having to fit into your vision of what they should be. Ask them about their day. Listen and witness their answers and help solve their problems if they ask for it.

Imitation – Be the person you want them to model themselves after. They will do as you do. So if you have low self-esteem and anxiety issues, they will too. Be kind to yourself and stand firm for them with their demands as well so that they may see what standing firm looks like.

Does “Self-respecting” Describe the Parent and Self-parent You Are? on Shalavee.com

Invisible sword fighting

If you paid attention to even most of these, you’d have a pretty great kid. Personally, I got lost between the family cracks and did not have most of these attentions paid me but yes, I’m paying them to my kids. And then I thought, what kind of parents are we to ourselves? I feel like I can tend to be on the side of almost abusive self-parenting if I allow me to continue to berate and judge myself for the myriad of things I seem to do “wrong”.

What if we took these steps above and applied them to ourselves, which is truly necessary if we are actually parents because our kids do as we do, not as we say. What kind of parents do we want to be to ourselves? Compassionate and kind or judgemental and punitive?  Just like these children, we go out into the society and make our own contributions based on our self-worth and respect so shouldn’t we give ourselves these gifts as well to give us an edge up on our lives? I could use with a little more self-respect in my world, couldn’t you?

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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