imconfident

I sincerely believe that it is far more beneficial and far less costly to help a child build confidence than it is to fix an adult who has little or none.

Do you make mountains out of molehills?

How often do you make a big deal out of nothing or turn a minor issue into a major issue or exaggerate something way out of proportion? Often our daily problems seem a lot bigger and more important than they really are. Life can be so complicated that we end up wasting a large amount of time dealing with things that are unnecessary and have little value in our lives.

When problems arise, we need to stop and ask ourselves a few questions so we can determine which problems need to be addressed and which ones need to be dismissed.

1) Does this really matter to my life right now and should I take the time needed to address it?
2) Will my reaction to this issue impact anyone else in a positive way?
3) Will this issue matter at all tomorrow, next week, next month or next year?

If the answer is a definite ‘Yes“, then it should be addressed. If the answer is ‘No” or ‘I’m not sure,” it should probably be dismissed at least for the time being. When we make a big deal out of everything that happens, we risk having a breakdown in communication with others and the possibility of bigger problems to deal with.

If we can develop a habit of stopping to think before we react in any situation, we can have a happier, more peaceful life. Everything that happens is not that important and we can just let it go. It isn’t that easy but if I can do it, so can you.

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Is our food killing us?

Do you ever stop to think about what you eat?  We all know that foods high in sugar, salt and fat are not healthy but did you know that some of the so-called healthy foods are actually poisoning our bodies?  A lot of our foods today are highly processed and our meat comes from animals that are raised in small unhealthy areas, forced to eat food that is not natural for them and given hormones and antibiotics.  We are eating foods that can cause numerous health problems such as:

  • obesity
  • heart disease
  • stroke
  • alzheimers
  • allergies
  • autism
  • learning disabilities
  • autoimmune disorders
  • some cancers
  • osteoarthritis
  • diabetes

Companies spend billions of dollars each year pressuring us to spend more money on fast food, prepared food and unhealthy products just so they can make money.  Obesity is growing rapidly, especially in children and we need to start paying attention to what we are eating and feeding our families.

We need to start developing a habit of eating healthy, whole foods like fresh vegetables and fruits, more fibre, foods that are low in salt and fat and meat/meat products that come from farms where animals are pasture-raised, grass-fed and free from chemicals.  We should also avoid sugar and sweeteners and use honey instead.

Eating fast, frozen or prepared foods may make our busy lives easier but as we age, our health will undoubtedly deteriorate and we will suffer in one way or another.  Better to take the time and prepare healthy foods while we are still in good health and have the ability to work at keeping fit.

Until I had my second stroke, I never really paid a lot of attention to what I ate.  I tried eating things in moderation but I didn’t really know how harmful the foods were that I was eating.  After doing lots of research, I have totally changed the way I eat and I also do regular exercise.    There are lots of books on dieting but you really need to be careful what you are reading and look for those with common sense and not just empty promises.   In my book, “Grandma’s Notes on Healthy Eating”, I have summarized what I have gained from several really good books.  One of the best books that changed my view on eating is by Dr Caroline Leaf, “Think and Eat Yourself Smart”.  She shows how food affects our brain and our bodies.

Since changing my diet and adding regular exercise, I feel so much better.  I still go out for a burger and fries on occasion or have a sweet treat but I don’t do it on a regular basis.  Maintaining a healthy weight requires a lot of hard work and patience but once you set some healthy habits it will benefit your health in so many ways.

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WHO is teaching your children?

As our children grow, they learn from everyone and everything around them.  They see and hear all sorts of things that catch their attention and they will try to imitate many of them.  When they are seeing and hearing positive things, it is a good thing and this will have a positive effect on their lives.  However, many of the things they hear and see are not very positive and could have a devastating effect on their lives.

Parents should be the main teacher for their children and be providing them with a positive example to follow.  However,  many parents today do not spend a lot of time with their children due to a busy schedule or lack of awareness in how to parent a child properly, and their children are left to finding guidance in other ways.  This could be from other family members or friends who may or may not be the best teachers.  Some children are left a lot in the hands of the TV or Media babysitter, who will certainly teach your children to be selfish, disrespectful, greedy and to expect the world to give them whatever they desire.  Is this the kind of child you want??  Is this the kind of child the world needs??  Of course not!!

We need to teach our children to be kind, loving and to respect other people so they will become responsible and confident adults.  Children want to communicate with their parents and to spend time with them.   If we are too busy to teach our children, they will learn from someone or something else.

So, WHO is teaching your children?

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Don’t be a copy of someone else

I’m sure you have heard the quote, “You were born an original, don’t die a copy.”  How well are you following this good advice?

Most of us spend our lives trying to be like someone else instead of being the best version of ourselves that we can be.  As small children, we look to our parents and want to be just like them when we grow up.  When we go to school we look to our friends and other schoolmates, trying to imitate their appearance and behaviours.  Then as an adult we see people who are successful and we try to model their lives.

We all want to be loved and accepted but we believe that we don’t have the qualities necessary to succeed, so we try to copy other people.  The sad fact is, that the people we admire most have just as many flaws and imperfections as we do, but we don’t see them.  We need to realize that we are all unique individuals with special talents and abilities.

Have you been successful in fulfilling your own dreams and reaching your own goals?  Or have you just fulfilled someone else’s dreams and reached someone else’s goals?  This is certainly not the way to find a happy and rewarding life.

Don’t try to be somebody else.  Just be the awesome person you were created to be!   Be confident in yourself!  Believe in yourself!  There is only 1 of you – 1 special you!!!  YOU ARE AN ORIGINAL!

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Have a date with your kid

My husband and I were sitting in a local coffee shop enjoying a coffee when a man came in with his young daughter.  He ordered tea and cookies and then sat down, taking off their coats and waiting for their order.  When the order was ready, the dad went to pick up a teapot, 2 cups, 2 plates and a bag with cookies.  He poured the tea and put the cookies on the plates.  Then they proceeded to have their tea party.  It was obvious that they were having a great time with all the smiles and conversation.  This dad sure knew how to treat a lady and was showing his daughter how special she was.

Going on a date is a great experience and it brings people closer together.  When we are young, it is exciting to have someone ask us to go for dinner, a movie or even just a walk in the park.   Then when we get into a serious relationship or get married, dating can sometimes take a back burner because we are too busy working or doing other things.  However, we should always take the time to plan a date so we can relax, de-stress and keep our relationships strong.

Dating is also a great idea when you have kids.  One-on-one time between a parent and child is a valuable learning experience and it will keep the lines of communication open.  When a father dates a daughter or a mother dates a son, it shows them how valuable they are and they will learn how to treat a future spouse and friends of the opposite sex.

February is a time when people think about love.  Why not show love to your kids and plan a date with them?  Then plan a date night with your spouse or a friend and strengthen your relationships!

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Countdown to Christmas! Do you have all your gifts ready?

Christmas is only 2 days away.  Do you have all your gifts ready?  I don’t mean those shiny, expensive things wrapped and sitting under the tree.  I mean all the important things like:

  • the gift of love for your family and friends
  • the gift of forgiveness for everyone you know, NOT just those who are nice to you
  • the gift of sharing everything you have with others
  • the gift of compassion for those who are in a dark, unhappy place
  • the gift of time to spend with others, creating awesome new memories
  • the gift of serving by doing something helpful for someone else
  • the gift of conversation and taking time to sit and listen

These gifts don’t put a dent in your finances but they are worth far more than anything money can buy.  Life can be full of happiness when you show love to others through your actions.  Spread joy around this year by searching inside for those wonderful gifts you already have and share them with your loved ones.

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What does Christmas mean to you?

For many people, the Christmas season means weeks of stress leading to a short peak of excitement, then a feeling of emptiness.   We spend all our time planning a family celebration, preparing food, shopping and wrapping gifts.  Then we have one or two days to share with family and friends; sharing gifts, eating and making memories.  Too soon it is all over and the stress takes its toll leaving us exhausted and let down.

Christmas is supposed to be a season of celebration – a time of peace and joy.  Instead of rushing around buying gifts that don’t last, we should be spending time with family and friends, making memories that will last.   Taking a walk with a loved on to see the Christmas lights or inviting a friend over for coffee shows you care much more than just quickly handing them a gift.  Taking the family to an outdoor event or to the park to play in the snow shows you value them more than buying them a pile of gifts.  ‘Presence’ is worth so much more than ‘presents’.

Money does not buy happiness but money does buy debt.  Don’t make Christmas the season that causes you pain throughout the rest of the year.  Make Christmas the best time of the year and make meaningful memories by showing love to everyone around you.

May God bless you during this wonderful time of year!

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Which child feels more loved?

This is a story about 2 little girls called Sarah and Sally.  Their parents love both of them dearly but one of them doesn’t feel very loved.  After reading this story, you can decide which one I am talking about.

Sarah is 9 years old and is a very easy-going child.  She is bright and attentive and likes to help the rest of the family.  Sally is 8 years old and is a very active and curious child.  She is always trying new things and gets very frustrated when they don’t work out as she expected.

Here is an example of what happens on a school morning.  Mom calls both of the girls to get up and get dressed.  In about 10 minutes, Sarah comes downstairs all dressed and ready to go.  Her mom butters her toast and asks if her sister is up.  “No, I haven’t heard her moving around yet”, Sarah replies.

Mom has to leave for work soon, so she runs upstairs to Sally’s room.  “Sally get up now.  You are going to be late again!”  Sally sits up in bed and rubs her eyes.  10 minutes later, she drags herself to the kitchen table.   ‘My goodness Sally!  Did you sleep in your clothes?  Why can’t you look neat and tidy like your sister.  Go upstairs now and put on a clean blouse.  And hurry up or you won’t have time for breakfast!”

Finally Sally comes down looking fairly nice, grabs a piece of toast and sits down.  “Sally, put on your shoes while you are eating.  The school bus will be here in a few minutes.  Your sister is already waiting on the porch.”

Which sister do you think left the house feeling loved?

It is pretty obvious.  The mother feels frustrated at her one child and rightly so.  But a little patience and encouragement would have helped the situation a lot better and created a positive environment for the children and the mother.  Comparing children is a really bad idea and it will create bad feelings between them.  All children are different and should be treated with respect.

What could the mother have done that would have had better results?

  • Instead of yelling at the child who has difficulty getting up, mom could have just come into her room and gently woke her up with a “Good morning, see you downstairs in a few minutes.”
  • Instead of getting angry with the rumpled clothing, mom could have said, “I think your blouse needs to be washed, it looks a bit dirty.   Why don’t you drop it in the clothes hamper and run up to your room and grab a clean one from your closet”.
  • Instead of pointing out that her (perfect) sister Sarah was all ready and waiting for the bus, mom could have said, “Can you quickly put on your shoes while eating your toast and then join your sister on the porch, please?”

It is difficult to watch what we say to our children, especially when we feel tired and stressed.  However, our words can have a terrible effect on our children if we aren’t careful and we can get stuck in a habit of negatively talking all the time.

Developing a habit of positive self-talk takes a lot of time and patience but it will benefit everyone around us: our families, our children, our friends and even ourselves.

 

 

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Depression is a liar

People who are depressed do not have good confidence and they have low esteem.  Depression doesn’t allow a person to feel good about themselves; instead, it destroys self-confidence.  Depression is a great liar.  It poisons our minds with the idea that we have no value, nobody likes us and our life doesn’t matter.  We doubt our abilities, we can’t see our great characteristics and we can’t use our skills.  We are critical about everything we do and don’t believe that we can accomplish anything.

Depression is a bad habit.  We feel that everything is hopeless and that nothing will ever change.  We spend our lives being angry, frustrated and upset believing that nothing will ever get better.

It is important to realize that being depressed is harmful to our health and we need to try hard to make positive changes.  Being depressed keeps us stuck in a negative mindset.  The good news is we can do something about it.  We CAN increase our confidence AND decrease our depression.

Here are some ideas:

  • Spend time with people who are encouraging and supportive.  We tend to think and act like the people we spend the most time with, so the more time you spend with positive people, the more positive you will become.  There are many different types of groups that can use your talents and skills.  Doing things you enjoy will help build your confidence.
  • Change your self-talk.  Many of us talk to ourselves in a negative way which will just bring us down.  Focus on using positive self-talk and stop putting yourself down.  Starting each day with a positive statement or affirmation is powerful.  “This is going to be a good day.”  “I am a good person”.  “I like to help people.” “I CAN do this.” “I have good friends.”
  • Write down all the good things in your life.  It may be hard at first but with practice it becomes easier.  This will help you create a new habit of positive thinking and increase your confidence.  Even if you are experiencing difficulties, you can always find something good if you look hard enough.
  • Do things for other people.  When you are focused on other people, it is hard to feel depressed.  Volunteering is a great way to help people and build your confidence.

If you are continually depressed, it is important that you seek medical help.  Therapy and medications are often necessary to help you cope and learn how to deal with your own personal issues.

Everyone has value and purpose.  Don’t let depression’s lies destroy your life.  Learn how to build confidence and increase your esteem.

 

 

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Do you look your best today?

When we get dressed, we try to pay close attention to what we are wearing so we will look good.  Sometimes, we will try on several outfits until we find the one that looks the best.  But does wearing nicely matched clothing and accessories really make us look our best?

What happens if we wake up with a bad attitude?  Does looking nice cover up any nasty thoughts that might be rolling around in our head or stop us from making unkind comments?

If we spent as much time working on changing our attitude as we do changing our outward appearance, we could make a positive impact on the people we meet and also become a lot happier.

So, do you really look your best today?  Does your attitude look as good as your appearance?

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