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.

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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What is the best gift under your tree?


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A key point about love

If you want someone to love you more, you should start loving them more.   It can be hard to step out of your comfort zone but don’t just wait for the other person to show their love or you will likely be disappointed.  Be the strong one and show others that you care.  Show love to your husband.  Show love to your wife.  Show love to your kids.  Show love to everyone around you.  If you are a vessel of love, it will start to make other people feel good and they will likely return your love.  Love is powerful.  Use it as a tool to create closer relationships.

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How to have a perfect Christmas

book and candlesIf you want to have the best possible Christmas this year, try the following:

  • spend lots of time with your family and friends (and not lots of money on worthless presents)
  • give thanks for what you have (and don’t be unhappy for things you don’t have)
  • show love and kindness to everyone you know (even those people you don’t particularly like)
  • forgive people who have hurt you (and forgive yourself for hurting others)
  • think the best of everyone (not the worst)

Most importantly, remember what Christmas is all about.  We are celebrating the birth of Jesus and praising God for His wonderful gift to the world.   May you all experience peace and joy in this Christmas celebration.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas!



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Looking for the right mate?

Have you found the right mate?  You know, the one who treats you the way you expect.  The one who brings home flowers and always remembers your birthday.  The one who showers you with attention and compliments you often.

Well, this kind of mate is hard to find.  When we are dating, we often put our best food forward and treat other people with kindness and respect.  We want them to see our good points and usually work very hard to impress them.  Then we get married and expect life to be great with this wonderful person that we have fallen in love with.

As the months and years go by, things change.   Work, kids, household chores, finances and other things start getting in the middle of our relationship and we stop treating each other the way we used to.  The love that drew us together is lost in the busyness of life.  Communication breaks down and when we do have a conversation, it ends up in an argument. Other things take priority and we start to wonder what we ever saw in this person.   We decide that the marriage is just not working out and start thinking about separation or divorce.  We even start looking around for ‘the right mate’.

Before a relationship even gets to this point, we should pay attention to the warning signs that something is wrong and try to determine what changes need to be made.  Instead of giving up and blaming your spouse for not living up to your expectations, look at how BOTH of you are acting.

  • What is your spouse doing that is different?
  • What are you doing that is different?
  • What are your expectations of each other?
  • Do you blame your spouse for all your problems or do you take responsibility for your own actions?
  • Are you working TOGETHER to make the marriage work or are you working independently looking for things that only make you happy?

Many problems in marriages are the result of unrealistic expectations.  We determine what we want the other person to do and when they don’t meet these expectations, we feel unloved and unappreciated.    Our selfish nature takes control and tells us that we don’t deserve to be treated this way.

If you want success in a marriage, it doesn’t necessarily come from finding the perfect mate.   You can look for your entire life and you will never find a perfect person.   We don’t have to find the right mate, we have to work hard to be the right mate.  If you leave your mate looking for someone who is better, you are wasting your time because there will be something wrong with everyone you meet.   We all have imperfections and flaws and when we love someone, we can learn to accept them.    We are all different and this is what makes life interesting and exciting.

If your spouse is abusive, then you should consider the situation carefully and make the appropriate choices.  However, if you are not communicating or spending a lot of time fighting or avoiding each other, then try to work on your problems TOGETHER.  You already know what you are dealing with and if you give up and find someone else, you’ll just have a new set of problems to deal with.

Marriage isn’t easy but many people give up way to easily on a relationship that could have worked out if both parties had just tried to meet each others needs instead of trying to find their own happiness.

So instead of looking for the right mate, ask yourself – Am I the right mate?

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We all carry a dangerous weapon

Did you realize that you carry a dangerous weapon with you every day?  Yes, we all do.  It is just something small but it can do a lot of damage.  It is more dangerous than guns or knives and we have access to it 24/7.

Have you figured out what I’m referring to?  Our tongue!  When we speak, we can impact people in a positive or negative way.  Our words can hurt people or help people.  Our words can damage or repair a relationship.  Our words can build up or tear down.

We should always choose our words carefully so we aren’t causing pain to someone else.  We should also be careful that we aren’t hurting ourselves with any negative self-talk.  Words are so powerful and once they are spoken, they can’t be reversed.

What are you loading your weapon with?  We certainly don’t want to be facing someone who is loaded with anger, bitterness or hatred.  Make sure you are loading your weapon with love and kill people with kindness!


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The quiz that helps you find the right mate

It is really hard to find the right mate.  When we are first attracted to someone, we don’t always see their true character.  People are usually on their best behaviour when they are trying to impress someone, so there may be a lot of personal issues that are hidden from us.   This is why it is very important to get to know someone better before we commit to a lasting relationship.

As parents, we try to help our children make good choices when it comes to what they wear, how they act and what type of friends they should have.  We try to teach them how to distinguish between good and bad behaviour and how to set proper boundaries.

Whether you are a parent and trying to guide your children in the right direction or an adult who is trying to navigate through life yourself, there is actually a quiz that will help you determine if someone would really be a good mate.   The questions are found in 1 Corinthians Chapter 13 and they can apply to anyone of any faith or belief.

To use this as a quiz, just replace the word ‘love’ with the name of the person you are checking out.  If the statement is true about that person for each of the statements, then they are the perfect person and certainly a ‘keeper’.  However, since nobody is perfect, you won’t find anyone who will fit all these statements.   To pass this test, the person should be trying to live up to these guidelines for love, so use your judgement and if they don’t pass many of them or any at all, you should probably keep looking.

Here is an example for the first statement.   Sara is thinking about dating a boy named Philip.  She writes down the first statement….Philip is patient and kind, showing kindness to others.  So she thinks about what she wrote.  Is Philip patient and kind?  Wow, she remembers what happened a couple of days ago.  Philip was saying mean things about a new kid at school, pointing at him and calling him a loser.  That certainly wasn’t very kind.  And he certainly isn’t patient.  He pushed ahead of a couple of smaller kids in the food line because he didn’t want to wait. He always seems to be nice to me but I wonder if he will treat me the same way one day.  Now Sara goes on to the rest of the questions and the answers are opening her eyes to what Philip is really like.  Sara realizes that Philip doesn’t know what love means at all.  Now she has to make a decision as to whether she will stick with him and try to help him change or end the relationship before any problems start.

Try this quiz with your kids when they are starting to date.  Try it with yourself if you are looking for the right mate.

  1. love is patient and kind, showing goodness to others
  2. love is not jealous of other people, it is pleased when others are honoured
  3. love is not boastful or proud, it accepts what it has
  4. love is not rude, it honours others by being considerate and courteous
  5. love is not self-seeking. it is interested in assisting others
  6. love is not easily angered, it is willing to endure insults and nasty comments
  7. love keeps no record of wrongs, forgetting and forgiving what has been said or done
  8. love does not delight in evil, taking part in things that are wrong, instead rejoices in the truth
  9. love protects others by concealing or hiding the faults of others
  10. love trusts and tries to believe the best
  11. love hopes that all things will eventually work out for the best
  12. love perseveres, it never gives up
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To Build (or Break) a Child’s Spirit – by Rachel Macy Stafford

A great post about how to build esteem in a child. We always need to be a positive role model and raise our children with love and respect.

Kindness Blog

To Build (or Break) a Child's Spirit - by Rachel Macy Stafford If you needed to lose weight, what would be most motivating?

You’ve put on some pounds. I’m not buying you any more clothes until you lose weight.


Let’s take a walk after dinner.
I’ll let you make the salad.
I love you just the way you are, exactly as you are.

If you needed to learn how to swim, what would be most motivating?

I don’t want to hear your crying. Get in the water and swim! Don’t be a baby!


I’ll be right by your side.
You can do this. If not today, we’ll try again tomorrow.
I love you just the way you are, exactly as you are.

If you needed to practice better hygiene, what would be most motivating?

What is that awful smell? It’s a wonder you have any friends.


Let’s go to the store and pick out some deodorant.
Your hair smells…

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Teach from the heart

We are all teachers.  Some of us are good teachers, some of us are bad teachers.  We don’t have to go to college or university to become a teacher.  Teaching is something that we do consciously or unconsciously.  Everything we say and do is teaching something to someone.

Parents are always teaching their children through example.   Children are watching and learning from our words and actions.   When they are small, they look up to their parents, older siblings and other adults in their lives and will try to follow their example.   We need to be careful that we are teaching them how to become responsible, caring adults.

We can teach in different ways.

  • We can teach children them by force, demanding that they follow our rules.   This will cause them to have low esteem, feel insecure, be unhappy, develop resentment for authority and possibly become a bully or a controlling adult.
  • We can teach children by allowing them complete freedom to do whatever they want.  This will also cause low esteem and insecurities because they don’t have any boundaries or guidelines.  They won’t know how to make good choices and will struggle as an adult.
  • We can teach children from the heart, showing love and encouragement but also setting reasonable boundaries and using fair discipline.  This builds esteem and a sense of value, leading to a responsible, caring adult.

How are you teaching your children?  By force, allowing them complete freedom or from the heart?  Take a close look at the relationship you have with your children and make sure you are providing them with a positive example.

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Not enough love as a child?

Do you feel that your parents didn’t give you enough love when you were a child?  Did they ignore you or treat you badly in any way?  Did they criticize everything you did or push you too hard to accomplish things?

Parenting is a difficult job and most parents are ill-prepared for being a parent.  They don’t take classes, read books or go to parenting seminars.  They aren’t being a bad parent intentionally, they just don’t know how to parent.  Most of us just “fly by the seat of our pants” using whatever methods we learned growing up, often making the same mistakes that their parents made, not really thinking about what we are doing.

If we haven’t received enough love as a child, we won’t understand how valuable we are and won’t be able to love ourselves.  This creates insecurities and fears that we carry with us through life and causes problems in our relationships.  If we don’t have love, we can’t give love and love is the key ingredient to a happy and successful life.

Did you receive love as a child?  Are you receiving love now?  Are you giving love?  If your answers are ‘no’, then you need to start building your esteem.   How?

  1.  Become aware of who you are.  Discover your abilities, skills and personality traits.   What do you enjoy doing?  What do you do well?  You are a unique and special individual.
  2. Accept your imperfections and flaws.  Focus on your positive qualities and not on the things you don’t like about yourself.   Everyone is flawed and imperfect, even those people that you think has everything all together.  Never compare yourself to anyone else, just be the best person you can be.
  3. Maintain a positive self-image.  Show other people that you are an awesome person and that you like yourself.   Be nice to other people and always be friendly especially with those who seem unhappy or withdrawn.  If you show confidence and give love to others, people will feel comfortable with you and you will get love back.

Just because you didn’t get love from other people, doesn’t mean you can’t start loving yourself and giving love to other people.  Treat yourself with respect and kindness.  You deserve it!

For more information on building esteem, visit my website at


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