child development, family conflict, family time, health, momblog, Relationships

Guilt-Free Parenting: Why You Need Self-Care the Most

I’ve talked to a number of parents and surprisingly, many of us actually feel guilty when we spend a little time at the salon, at the shopping mall, and in other places of interest! Why? That’s because of the prevailing mentality that parents shall be forever tied to their kids to prove that they are performing their duties well!

Parenting is a tough job in itself and we shouldn’t make it more difficult by creating imaginary and unnecessary pressure to meet the unrealistic expectations of other people. To make you feel less guilty about self-care, let me prove some points:

1. The way you feel as a human being has a consequential effect on the way you act as a parent.

the-honest-company-bL4TJNwtLMw-unsplash

Was there ever a time when you unintentionally blurted out a negative word to your child or shouted at her just because you were so stressed from all the household chores or frustrated from work?

Millions of people across the globe would come to a point when the relationship with their children would get affected by the difficult circumstances of their career and personal lives.

Don’t wait for the time when your emotional bucket overflows with negativity. Rescue your soul from tiredness. Save yourself and your children from regretful situations that you may never take back.

2. Depression and anxiety are increasing at alarming levels among parents.

Generally, parents are regarded as heroes and strong figures in the eyes of their children. Although that could be true, we still cannot disregard the fact that a lot of parents today are facing anxiety and depression from unmet goals, unrealized desires, insecurities, and so much more.

anxiety

The feeling of emptiness among parents is even furthered by their lack of opportunities to explore their own source of personal fulfillment. Many are trapped in the notion that once you become a parent, your world must now only revolve around your child.

3. Happiness is contagious. Where will your child’s happiness come from when you are void of it?

sebastian-leon-prado-dBiIcdxMWfE-unsplashWe all want to have happy children. We want them to grow up with the ability to smile despite life’s struggles. We’d like them to see laughing yet also learning from their mistakes. We want them to take the world easily yet also with full responsibility.

Such a predisposition in life can only be attained when they have the right influences. And who can most easily affect the way that children think but their parents, right?

4. Self-care is a right, never just a privilege. You do not lose this right by virtue of being a parent. Never!

Whoever said that you lose your right to self-care when you became a parent? Yes, you were given the responsibility to raise little souls but that does not mean that your basic right to experience personal happiness from your own hobbies, leisure activities, and other stuff would consequentially be removed from you.

drew-dau-GA2sc8nIOsk-unsplash

Remember, you can and you must still take care of yourself and allow yourself some fun even when you are now a parent. Take a few hours off in a week to go to your favorite place, visit your friends, or have some me-time in a coffee shop. Don’t be afraid to ask help from your spouse or your extended family. Allow them to help you in raising your child so that you can also have the time to take care of yourself.


how to be the most loving parent the smart way

 

Get a  book by the author Bakshi Sidhu

child development, family conflict, momblog, Relationships

The Hows of Positive Parenting: Proven Tips to Raise Happy & Successful Children (Part 2)

Do you still remember the first 4 hows of positive parenting that we have discussed in the previous post? Let me recount them:

  1. Manage behaviour with Clarity
  2. Implement Rules with Transition
  3. Frame your Instructions in a Positive Manner
  4. Work on Your Own Mood and Transform Your Perspectives

Now, let us look into three more tips that can help you raise happy and successful children through positive parenting:

5. Validate their Feelings and Empathize with their Emotions

Is your child afraid because of the spider? Is she annoyed because of her sibling’s mischievous actions? Do not discount her emotions. Do not undermine how she feels by saying that it’s nothing or it’s not correct to feel a certain way.

We must all acknowledge the fact that all humans can become disappointed, frustrated, sad, lonely, and angry at times. Even though we are pushing for positive parenting, we cannot remain blinded by the truth that negativities can happen anytime most especially during the most unexpected times.

01-trigger-Ways-to-Stop-a-Temper-Tantrum-in-Its-Tracks_47650060-Marina-Dyakonova-ft

When your child shows signs of anger or sadness, validate her feelings and empathize with her emotions. You can do this by uttering the following expressions, “I understand that you are sad (or mad) because of what happened. I know the feeling and it’s totally okay to feel that way. Come, let me embrace you.” Then after a few minutes of empathizing, it is now your turn to transform the negative into positive. Encourage your child to forgive and understand other people and her environment. Teach her to move forward from negative emotions.

6. Interact with the Same Level Physically

Mom and daughter talking about travel in the cityNot until when your child reaches a certain age, you would surely still be taller than her, right? But do you know that this physical gap between parents and children can contribute to misunderstanding and feelings of aloofness? In order to address this, you can actually make adjustments.

Physically, you can make sure that you are always talking at the same level as your child. Let your eyes meet hers whenever you discuss something. This will fortify the impression that you are sincere with your child. Even the very act of lowering yourself to her level shows humility and compassion and can even encourage more openness and acceptance on your child’s part.

7. Let Self-Expression Be Free Yet Proper

Your child is bored from your lunch meeting with friends then she suddenly cries really loud. Your daughter screams during your church’s afternoon service because she hasn’t had her nap during the day. Your son throws a tantrum at the mall because you didn’t buy him a toy.

Sounds all too familiar? Don’t worry, you are not alone. These kinds of circumstances are normal in almost all families in the world. That’s particularly because our children are children! They haven’t developed maturely yet. They don’t even have enough capabilities to control their emotions.

392335-PCDK72-703

As a parent, it is your duty to respect the way that they vent out their emotions. And it is also your responsibility to teach them the proper ways of managing them. First, look into the reason why they suddenly reacted in a certain way and resolve that. Second, create a diversion so they could move from the negative behavior to a more acceptable one. Third, talk to them calmly and clearly explain how they should behave the next time. Do not worry that your child won’t understand you because of her age. Just do the talking, and she surely has her own way of figuring out what you intend to tell her.

Positive parenting is a complex approach. It is not as simple as giving you a few commandments or guidelines to follow. So don’t be surprised if we will still have a third part for this topic. I know that you are eager for more tips.

Be updated with the most recent posts from Little Ones Life Skills by following our social media pages! The next article would surely be a gem!


1115170878106304.VpltTucCmKszmwtCd9bk_height640

 

Get a  book by the author Bakshi Sidhu

 

child development, Child's Education, family conflict, momblog, Relationships

Harnessing the Positive and Taming the Negative on Strong-Willed Children

Having strong-willed children can be a double-edged sword. On one hand, having a strong will is a sign that your child can be easily equipped to conquer the world with a free spirit, a determined mind, and an unwavering determination. On the other hand, uncontrolled will during childhood may prevent the development of your child’s moral compass because she can have the tendency to only believe in her own perceptions and have her own convictions.

Untitled-2

Despite having both beneficial and harmful sides to being a strong-willed person, parents can still focus on the development of the positive aspects and work on the improvement of the negative ones. Here are some of the most helpful tips on how we can use a positive parenting approach to strong-willed children:

1. Give Options Instead of Directives.

One of the most salient characteristics of strong-willed children is their defiance to directives. If you notice that your child hardly accepts certain orders such as brush her teeth, pick up her mess, take a bath, or get inside the house, then you need to rework your strategy. Instead of providing direct orders, you will have to frame your talk in a way that gives her options.

Pretty Hispanic teacher works with cute little preschooler

For example, you can let her choose between building blocks in the living room and playing with her stuffed toys in the playroom. This strategy works effectively because you removed the focus away from the real intention of letting her go inside the house. In addition, you were also able to reinforce her idea that she can still be the master of her own destiny without being always restricted by other’s imposition of random rules.

2. Let Her Claim Authority Over Her Own Body.

Let Your Child Make Her Own Choices and Put the Power Struggles Behind You_Baby throwing clothes

Do you know that children can also feel frustrated over their lack of basic freedom such as being able to choose their own clothes? It is very important to foster your child’s sense of individuality by allowing her to have a say on many things about her life such as what she will wear for the day, how she’d like to fix her hair, and whether or not she would like her pictures to be posted in social media.

I know how exciting it is to plan out what our children would wear for a specific day, but the notion of having control over one’s own body can be diminished whenever we force them to wear certain stuff. A good way to go about this is by letting her pick from at most three sets of clothes that you have handpicked prior to her personal selection.

3. Establish Rules and Routines.

Signs-You-Have-Strong-Willed-ChildSince strong-willed children are usually defiant, it would be best to train them into having a certain routine and into letting them understand the need for certain rules. This can prevent power struggles during your parenting journey and prevent possible clashes. When children understand that rules are essential for a peaceful living, then they will surely be able to respect government authorities, workplace bosses, and community members when they grow up.

4. Have a Strong Personal Connection Founded on Respect.

father_son

To be able to instill discipline on a strong-willed child, you will have to go the extra mile of fostering a deep relationship that is founded on respect and evidently shown through effortful communication. Your strong-willed child would feel antagonistic towards your disciplining efforts if you fail to make her feel loved and respected. Make sure that you set aside meaningful communication every single day. Listen to her needs most especially when she feels upset, agitated, and emotional. Let your child know that you respect her emotions by acknowledging her feelings.


how to be the most loving parent the smart way

 

Get a  book by the author Bakshi Sidhu

child development, family conflict, momblog, Relationships

6 Easy Methods for Preventing and Controlling Tantrums

In one of the previous posts, I gave you reasons why tantrums are not at all bad. By acknowledging that tantrums are perfectly normal for our young children, we could now start making proactive steps to help our kids overcome their feelings of stress, emotional insecurity, and fear.

Here are some of the proven ways to keep meltdowns at bay and effectively controlled:

1. Let your child have a positive emotional foundation

empathetic-with-boundaries-in-post-2

Do you know that it has been proven that consistent parent and children bonding activities such as playing together can offer positive and lasting impact on the emotional foundation of children? Even story-telling sessions can help reinforce discipline and patience which result in less emotional meltdowns among toddlers and preschool kids.

2. Do not be triggered by your child’s behavior.

1270234No matter how much annoying, stressful, and embarrassing the situation is, do not ever be triggered by your child’s tantrums. Once you react negatively to a child’s meltdown, then you only aggravate the situation. Remember one of the most frequently offered advice to couples about the need to be composed when one is feeling bad or angry? The same goes for our kids.

3. Be able to understand where he is coming from.

Reality-of-Being-Pregnant-and-Having-a-Toddler

Tantrums have certain triggers. Surely, one cannot behave annoyingly without any reason at all. If your child is over three years old, then it could be much easier to handle tantrums because you can effectively converse with her regarding what she wants, how she feels, and what makes her sad. But if you have a toddler who has a very limited vocabulary, then you can start training her to express herself through actions and signs. This way, you will be able to have a clue if she wants to have a certain toy, whether she is hungry or not, or if she is feeling sleepy.

4. Give him the space to vent out.

Don’t ever try to contain the stress, worry, and sadness of your child by stopping her from crying or screaming. Little children have a very limited capacity for managing their emotions. When they are frequently stopped from releasing their negative feeling, then their very mental health could be affected really badly. If they are having tantrums, give them two to three minutes to let them vent out.

5. Be creative – offer other objects of interest.

imgIf your child still hasn’t overcome her meltdown in three minutes, then you could try diverting her attention to something of interest. If she cries over ice cream, why not point to her stack of blocks or her cute dolls? Use your environment to stimulate her interest. Even a family picture can suddenly turn things around. Talk more about her siblings or even herself. Let her pour down her mental faculties in being amazed by her surroundings.

6. Offer the physical comfort of your mommy or daddy embrace.

Dad

Our little children best understand love through physical means. There is nothing more comforting to our kids than our cuddles and hugs. Embracing your children can stimulate the release of more oxytocin or love hormones which will then allow them to feel much happier and less stressed.


how to be the most loving parent the smart way

 

Get a  book by the author Bakshi Sidhu

child development, family conflict, family time, momblog, Relationships

The Six Best Tips to Prevent Shouting at Your Kids

Parenting is definitely overwhelming. Although it is generally happy and fulfilling, it can also be toxic and exhausting at times. When things are not going well such as when our kids fail to listen to us or when they behave in a nasty way, we can have the tendency to yell at them. Is it normal? Or is it even acceptable?

Most moms and dads regret it when they suddenly and unintentionally shout at their children. But no matter how much they want to stop themselves from doing such, they admit that yelling seems to be a natural response.

I understand this sentiment. There are just times when our kids could easily bring out the unexpected beasts in our supposedly soft and loving hearts. But as much as possible, we don’t want this to happen. We want to continually be our children’s protector, nurturer, and safe refuge.

Not shouting at our kids is essential in making them grow mentally healthy and emotionally secure. Studies even point to the ineffectiveness of shouting in disciplining our children. When we yell at them, we do not address the main cause of misbehavior since they won’t usually be receptive to explanations during moments of distress.

To help you prevent from shouting at your children, I have compiled six of the best ways that you can use to make sure that you enforce positive discipline:

1. Identify what triggers your shouting.

1459981233-gettyimages-177462404In order to address the problem which is yelling, then we also need to know the cause of your response. Look back at the times that you have yelled at your children. Was it because of certain misconduct? Then go the extra mile in order to prevent such misbehavior. If your children usually mess up during meal times, why don’t you start teaching them table manners according to their age? If you have a toddler, then you could set up paper floor mats that could catch the dirt as she feeds. Do whatever it takes to prevent your triggers from arising.

2. Make your commands doable and easily understandable.

Your children surely have not fully matured yet, right? Then you must work on the instructions that you give them. If you want them to clean the living room, then be specific with your orders and give them one at a time. Ask them to pick up the scattered toys first, then only after that shall you order them to put the toys in the ottoman or do other things related to it. Do not bombard them with a lot of orders because they will surely fail you at some point in time and that could just cause your emotions to rise again.

3. Offer warning signs to generate teamwork.

"I'm sorry Dad!"

Be able to communicate to your children that you might be at the brink of a disastrous response and that you don’t want to reach that point. It would be nice if you could directly tell them that you are already losing patience and that you may now be triggered to shout. Such warning signs, when communicated peacefully, can generate teamwork because children would most likely rather prevent you from losing your cool than do otherwise.

4. Set realistic standards.

Your kid is not an adult; thus, you cannot expect her to be behaving like an ultra-disciplined adult who has been trained to follow all orders without room for mistakes. If you have a toddler, then don’t expect her to be eating mess-free. If you have an infant who keeps on crying at night, then don’t get mad at her for keeping you awake. After all, our expectations usually set the foundations for our behavioral responses.

5. Reflect on your day and your life.

frustrated.mom_

Have you had a bad day? Has it been months since you last had your own time for yourself at the salon or a coffee shop? Have you been feeling anxious because of career disappointments? It is important to examine yourself most especially when you have been delivering not-so-acceptable behavior towards the people around you. Be able to know how to address your own frustrations so that you can also live peacefully with your children.

6. Practice. Practice. Practice.

father_son_bonding

Yes, it can be hard. Even when you become intentional in changing yourself, your child, and the circumstances, you could still suddenly yell at your child when certain situations happen. If ever you fail, do not ever think that it is the end of your journey to positive discipline. It could take time and a great deal of effort. Keep on practicing. But whenever you fail, do not forget to make a personal apology to your child about what you have done. Let her know that you are capable of asking forgiveness and that you need her help to remove the yelling tendencies.


the quicker_ better way to get your child potty trained

 

 

Get a  book by the author Bakshi Sidhu