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.

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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Worry is a waste of time

I used to worry about everything.  I was a real worrywart.  If you haven’t heard this term before, it refers to someone who worries without a cause.  We worry about almost anything; our families, our health, our job, money, the weather and everything in between.

Worrying is normal but some people carry it to an excess.  They may even avoid certain places, people and activities because they are worried about getting hurt or sick.

Excessive worrying can lead to stress and anxiety and make you physically ill.  It can also affect your appetite, your sleep, your relationships and your work.  This can lead to harmful lifestyle habits such as alcohol, drugs and smoking. Better to try and work on changing one bad habit (worrying) instead of adding more bad habits.

When we are faced with a situation that causes us to worry we need to consider whether or not there is anything we can do to change the situation If there is, then we should take action so we can stop worrying about it. If we can’t change the situation, then we need to try to release our worry by focusing on doing something positive.   Worrying will NOT change the outcome.

Write down your worries in a journal and forget about them. Writing things down is a great way to relieve stress. Then at the end of the day, sit down in a comfortable place and review your worries. How many actually turned out the way you expected?

Worry is like a rocking chair: it gives you something to do but never gets you anywhere.  Erma Bombeck

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A dangerous weapon

Did you know that you carry a very dangerous weapon with you? Most people don’t even realize that they carry a weapon that is so destructive it can tear apart families, destroy relationships and even cause death.

Our tongue is a huge weapon. It is a very small part of us but it holds the power of life and death. It can be more dangerous than guns or knives and cause a mountain of damage in our lives.

We can choose to use positive words or negative words. Positive words can impart valuable information, be encouraging or bring happiness to others. Negative words can spread lies, discourage and hurt others. Words can also hurt ourselves when we are using negative self-talk and repeating the lies that others have said to us.

There is a reason why we have 1 tongue, 2 eyes and 2 ears. We SHOULD listen more and see more than we speak. Sadly many people lash out at others before they even consider the consequences of their words. Bullying is a good example of how words affect people.

We need to be very careful with our “dangerous weapon” and try to “kill” people with kindness instead of destroying them with our words.  Think carefully before you speak.  Practice changing any negative thoughts into positive thoughts and create a habit of positive thinking.

 

 

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Do you play the blame game?

We have all played the BLAME GAME but have you ever won?  You know, the game where we transfer our faults to someone else so we can avoid responsibility for our own actions.  If we can just make someone else look bad or get them to accept fault, it will make us feel better and excuse any bad behaviour on our part.  The only problem with this is that it doesn’t solve anything and can actually make things worse.

Why do we play the Blame Game?  It isn’t really much fun and people usually get hurt, including ourselves.   It is because we lack confidence and we are afraid that if we do something wrong, people won’t like us.  If we can point the blame in another direction, we think it makes us look better.

How many of us have said:

  • You ruined my life
  • I’m late because of the kids, husband, traffic….
  • You are the problem in this relationship
  • I’m overweight because you give me too much food
  • My boss is holding me back from getting a better position
  • Your overspending got us into debt

Do you take any responsibility for what happens in your life?  Blaming others is a negative action that eventually makes us feel worse and causes a lot of stress for everyone.  Nobody is perfect and others can cause problems for us, but many of our problems are the result of our own poor choices and how we respond to others.  We need to take responsibility for our part and choose how we respond in difficult situations.

 

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Do you have an addiction?

The truth is we are all addicted to something.  Most of us believe that an addiction is being addicted to drugs, alcohol or cigarettes.  However, the dictionary defines ADDICTION as 1) the quality or state of being addicted 2) a compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance known by the user to be harmful;  characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal.

In simple terms, anything our body craves on a regular basis and we can’t do without, is an addiction.  Besides substances, we can also be addicted to behaviours, emotions, activities and stuff.  Behavioural addictions can include gambling, exercise, sex and eating.   Emotional addictions can include anger, depression and sadness.  Addictions to activities can include watching TV, playing video games and playing sports.   Addictions to stuff can include excessive buying of things you don’t really need (hoarding) and often go into debt to pay for them.

What are you addicted to?  Do you overindulge in any activity that is causing serious problems for you, your family, friends and anyone else in your life?  If so, try to take steps to take charge of your life and make some positive changes.  You can be addicted to positive things like reading, walking, singing, playing solitaire, eating healthy foods and doing good deeds.  Take charge of your life and work on building some positive addictions.  Don’t let your life control you.  Talk to a trusted family member or friend and ask them to help you eliminate those negative addictions.  Seek professional help for the ones you can’t seem to control and start enjoying your life.

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Are there S..words in your words?

Are your words sharp and cutting?  Do they hurt people?  Are they critical and harsh?  If you aren’t careful with your words, they can be like swords and cut right into the heart of another person.

Many of us go through life not even knowing the effect of our words.  We have to really listen to ourselves and hear what is coming out of our mouths.  Then we have to try to stop any words that are negative and hurtful.  Our words come from our thoughts and we can’t stop our negative thinking but we CAN stop speaking negative words.

It is a choice as to what we say to others and ourselves.  Just as when we pour coffee into a cup, we can also pour dirty water into a cup.  It is the same for our words.  We can pour out our negative thoughts and create pain or we can pour out positive thoughts and create possibilities.   Negative words can tear down and discourage.  Positive words can lift up and encourage.

We have the power to change our words.  All we have to do is create a habit of positive thinking.  It takes time and effort but if we are consciously aware of our thoughts, we CAN change.  When those negative thoughts come floating into our heads, we can stop ourselves from letting them become negative words.  Challenge those thoughts; change them into something positive or just let them float away and say nothing.

Are there s..words in your words?  Stop using your words to hurt and start using your words to heal.

 

 

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What would you do if you had 1 month to live?

We don’t get to choose our birthplace, our parents or when we will die but we DO get to choose how we live during our short time on this earth.  We ever know what tomorrow will bring so we should live well today.  How?

  • love the people around you
  • do everything to the best of your ability
  • help others
  • forgive quickly

Each day is a gift that we can enjoy and share with others.  Instead of wasting time filling our days with things that don’t matter, we should be doing things that will make a difference in someone’s life.  This could be as simple as taking a friend for coffee, calling a distant relative or volunteering a couple of hours a month for a local organization. It is all the small things in life that add up to a huge amount of blessings.  Make sure every day counts and don’t end up with regrets, wishing you had done more during your life.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life. If you only had 1 month to live, what would you do?

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Feeling loved and accepted


Many people in this world don’t feel loved or accepted.  They believe lies they have heard throughout their lives as being the truth and cannot see themselves in a proper light.

How many children have been told, “You can’t do this.  You’re ugly.  You’re bad.”  How many wives or husbands have been told, “You don’t do anything right.  You’re too fat.  You don’t make me happy.”  How many students or employees have been told,  You’re not smart enough.  You’re too slow.  You’ll never amount to anything.”  There are so many things that could have been said to us that make us feel unloved, unwanted and unworthy.  What lies have you been told?  Just fill in the blank.  You’re…………………….

We have all felt unworthy of someone’s love because of words that have been spoken to us.  It might have been a parent, a family member, a friend, a co-worker or even a complete stranger.  If we have enough confidence in ourselves and good esteem, we will be able to let these unkind words just roll off our backs.  Sadly, many of us don’t have enough confidence to realize that these things are not true and we will live our lives believing we are lacking in something.

It is so important that we show people that we love and accept them, even when they make mistakes.  None of us is perfect and we don’t want other people to put us down when we do something wrong.  Parents are the first ones who need to show a child how valuable they are so they can grow into confident, loving adults.  It isn’t easy being a parent in this stressful world but we need to take time to love our children and spent time with them.  Love and encourage your children.  Be a positive example to them by caring about the people around you.  Pray for them and be there when they need you.   Their future depends on what happens in their life today.

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How to have a good day

Almost every day can be a good day if you put your mind to it.  You can get up every morning and walk through the day without really thinking about anything OR you can get up every morning and live purposefully by actually thinking about what is going on and taking positive action.

What is on your mind when you first wake up in the morning?  Worries, doubts, fears?  Why not replace this with anticipation, purpose?  Pursue happy thoughts before you even get up in the morning.  Say positive statements or affirmations that will help put you in a positive mindset.  Don’t let all those negative thoughts put you in a bad frame of mind or you will most certainly have a bad day.

  • “This is going to be a good day!”
  • “I am going to sing all the way to work today!”
  • “I am full of energy!”
  • “I can make a difference in someone’s life today!”
  • “I have an awesome family and friends!”

Never put yourself or anyone else down with negative thoughts or words.  They will come naturally as we are wired to be negative-minded.  But don’t let those negative thoughts float around in your head.  Be aware and catch them quickly before they become negative words and actions.

You CAN have a good day.  Make sure you put your mind to it first thing in the morning!

 

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Simplify your child’s life…and your own

We live in a world that is complicated.   Daily pressures cause us to try to do way more that we should.  We try to pack so many things into 24 hours that we are exhausted at the end of the day.  Work, family, daily chores, meetings, sports, other activities….it is all too much for many of us to handle.  The stress we feel is handed down to our children when we place our own expectations on their little lives.

Children are not allowed to be children anymore.  They are pressured into growing up quickly and filling their time with endless activities.  When I was small, life was simple.  I spent hours playing by myself and using my creativity to do projects like painting, sewing and knitting.  Toys and games did not fill my room and I wasn’t bored.  Instead of spending hours playing on a computer or an i-pad, I was outside riding my bicycle or having adventures in my backyard.

I see children today who are involved in so many things that they don’t have time to enjoy their childhood.  Their schedules are so full of activities like sports, dancing, martial arts, video games, parties and other events that they don’t have time to use their own creativity.  Then when they do have down time, they go to rooms full of toys and games and are bored because they have nothing to do.

Parents often smother their children with too much, thinking it shows love.  We all want our children to have nice things but when it is overdone, it can result in emotional problems.  Kids feel frustrated, stressed, unsatisfied and feeling entitled to having everything they want.   We should give our children less stuff and allow them to have more free time to build their creativity.  We should give our children less activities and more family time.  More is not better.  More is stressful.  We need to simplify the lives of ourselves and our children.

Here is a great article I just read that explains more deeply what happens when we simplify life.http://raisedgood.com/extraordinary-things-happen-when-we-simplify-childhood/

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