It’s like the world is in fast-forward. We rush rush rush and we forget, sometimes, to give feedback and, yes, accolades. In general, but most importantly to those who we love and who deserve it most. We forget that sometimes a verbal pat on the back and acknowledgement is reason enough to keep trying. We forget that everybody likes to have their effort noticed. So, think about two key roles that you play – parent and partner – and a few comments for each that might be n
There are THOSE words that you say that you can just toss out there almost without even thinking, and they really aren't worth a lot. You know, the ones that you can say without actually listening (when your boys are going on and on and on about who they think is the best basketball player of all time, and asking if you agree with their current top three). And then there are those that are BIG and make a huge difference and impact because they show investment and interest.
It is interesting to me the effort some go to in order to be insulted. Why are we so quick to take offense? Example 1: I watched a number of sports games over the past several weekends; after school activities are in full swing, therefore so are the games. Games of all ages, for all sports, for both genders. All.weekend.long. Most recent weekends it has been soccer and basketball. (Hang in there, this relates to my point, I promise.) I watched numerous children go throu
There is a time and a place for everything. I think it is important to remember that, especially because the world our kids are growing up in is very very different than the world we knew as kids. While we spent our days at school, and then connected with our friends with the phone with the SUPER long cord (or, later, that cordless thing), we didn’t have the same sort of connectivity. Now, our kids are almost constantly on their devices. The amount of information out the
Sez the dog As you well know, there exist cat people and dog people. I’m not sure if this is really a statement about personality so much as preference for pet (or at least, that’s what I’ll claim to think. I deny saying otherwise). I am a dog person, although most recently we’ve been owned by cats. I think that’s the proper way to word it, too, because while I do love them dearly, they do not behave as pet-like as would, say, a dog. I am bothered by their indifference.
The world, much like your table at Benihana's, is filled with strangers. Every single one of these strangers has at least one (but likely more) interesting story to share. Every single one of these strangers has value. I'm not sure I believe in karma or fate; some things happen just because they happen. Some people you meet just because they are in the same place as you are at the same window of time. Make the most of that happenstance and get to know them. Get to know
I know, you'd like to think it's a little bit about you at the very least. Sometimes, though, it's not. At all. Sometimes, it is not the time to share your experiences. Sometimes, it is about being there for the other person. Shift versus support: Shift responses are a hallmark of conversational narcissism; the point of a shift response is to get the focus back to you. I know you know people who do this all.of.the.time. A conversation with people who tend towards shift
“Children will listen to you only after they feel you have listened to them.” Jane Nelsen Positive Discipline How are your listening skills? When someone is speaking to you, are you fidgeting like your 5 year-old, waiting for your turn to speak? Do you have your eye on your phone, waiting for the ping of an incoming text or email? Are you doing something else with your hands while your child is telling you a story? Oh, I know you’re busy. We all are. It is ever so hard
We all feel as though our generation grew up at that ONE pivotal time, THE era, and, regardless of our age, we feel our growing up years were significantly different than what our children are going through. Sure, sure, not all of us walked uphill through the snow - both ways! - to the single room schoolhouse, but .... certainly our experiences were different than those of our children, especially those of us raising kids in the foreign service. I believe understanding these
Don’t let yourself become so concerned with raising a good kid that you forget you already have one. Glennon Melton, momastery.com Isn’t it true, sometimes we get so focused (fixated?) on what isn’t going as we planned or would like that we rush by and overlook what amazing beings our kids really are. Just like sometimes we get so focused on what all we SHOULD do (as parents, as free-thinking adults, as individuals responsible with our own well-being), we forget all of the
Bet right now you are so regretting not signing your kids up for consecutive summer camps from the day school finished to the Friday before it starts again. Bet right now you are thinking year-round school is the best.thing.ever. Bet right now the sound of the words ‘Iiii’mmmm boooorrred!’ Whined at a tone of voice no parent can stand and is worse than nails on a chalkboard. Bet right now you would give anything at all for that total stranger on the street to just hang out wi
Focusing on the good When you’re in the midst of a heated ‘discussion’ with your kid (no matter their age), I would be willing to bet the last thing you are thinking about is any one of that child’s good qualities. Oh, we’ve all been there. The blind anger you are probably feeling makes everything fade away but that one issue. Grrr! This is the point at which any parent will feel the most challenged. Is there any way to help make this situation any easier? Yes, but it
'You are allowed to be mad, but you are not allowed to be mean.' Repeat after me: Anger is a normal emotion. I know it may seem as though getting angry is counter-productive, but if we could remember that the actual emotion of anger is part of a healthy range of emotions, then we can better understand that it is not the emotion itself that is harmful or destructive; rather it is how we express the emotion that can be damaging. Thankfully, with practice, we can all learn how
Yes, I know men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but … boys and girls? I think they benefit from a lot of the same things. Especially the messages they get from their parents; clearly, males and females are not the same, but I think it is a good thing for them to hear positive messages about the other gender, beginning at ages wherein they aren’t even really sure of the difference. It’s never too early to start. Some of the things we historically tell girls (‘You’re
Moving towards ‘yes’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4tefnQGtNY Sorry, that was a joke. (The song) Honestly, have you ever counted the number of times you use the word ‘no’ with your kids? 3,607 and it isn’t even noon yet, right? Partly, you are running the labyrinth of obstacles that can maim/harm/impair your child (sure, this is less true as they age and become a little more self-aware, but this is our job as parents regardless of their age: keep them safe from harm. A
Who is 'Us' and who is 'Them'?
It's us versus them. Kids versus adults. Republicans versus democrats. Boys versus girls. Americans versus Europeans. At some point, shouldn't we focus more on how we are the same versus how we are different? Let's look for unifying characteristics instead of what makes us diffferent.
I feel as though there are two mindsets: those who find it easier to focus on the good characteristics of others and those who focus instead on the bad. M
It’s the week of appreciating relationships, and show those we love how much we do indeed care. One of the best things we can do for our relationships -- parental, sibling, marital, friendship -- is to feed them. What, exactly does 'food' for a relationship look like? I’m no expert, but a couple of suggestions: Laugh together. A recent study out shows that the relationships that endure, the ones that make it through the tough times, are those wherein laughter occurs Those
One thing I've noticed: tone of voice speaks loudly. You can say the kindest words possible in a menacing tone of voice, and the words mean nothing; the tone makes the words feel mean and menacing as well. In the same light, you can say a horribly rude slur in a crooning loving way and your tone conveys a very different message than might your insults. (Seriously, if you are a pet owner, try it. I say for pets because I wouldn’t want to feel as though I’ve encouraged any pare
My dearest boys, So excited! School is starting tomorrow! This is your big day! I know you’re not excited for classes to start so much as you are to see your friends. What fun it will be to tell them all about your summer, your adventures, and your triumphs! So much and so little has changed. I look at you three and get a knot in my throat: look at how much you’ve grown and changed over this summer break! Time is flying by. And, most importantly, after all of this forc
‘You can be smart, you can be beautiful, but if you don’t know how to treat people, if you don’t walk into a room and say hello, if you don’t say thank you, if you’re not looking out for the kid who’s sitting alone by his or herself, then who are you?’ Michelle Obama One of the things I truly love about parenting is when I hear something I believe is of value coming back out of my kids’ mouths. Oh sure, this very same parroting has come back to bite me in the keister more o