How to be more positive as a parent starts with being more positive! Try this little exercise: How you are doing in this moment? Notice this - most of our depression, shame, feeling inadequate, is based on some kind of past attachment. Most of our anxiety, fear, worry, is based on some kind of future attachment. Right now, everything’s good!
Staying in the NOW allows you to be truly present for your children and present means, here and now, I’m not allowing the past or future to interfere with the present. Stay in the NOW, not the past or the future.
Take care of yourself. This is hard, you have a lot going on, so you’ve got to take care of yourself. I gave an assignment to one of the moms I coach to make a list of everything and everyone that she was responsible for and took care of. Her pen was smoking as she completed the first page and flipped to the next. Somewhere midway through page three, she started to slow down. She announced, “Okay, I think I’ve got it Dr. Paul,” as she handed me the list. Guess who was missing from her list! Herself. No surprise.
Flight attendants go through their safety routine before we take off. They come to the point about oxygen masks that fall from the ceiling if we lose cabin pressure. Why do they tell us to put our own mask on first? If we are out cold in the aisle, we are just in the way, we are part of the problem. We have to put on our own mask first. Take care of yourself.
Take care of the team. That team first and foremost is you and that is why hack number two is to take care of yourself. Taking care of the team may mean a spouse or co-parent. Take care of that relationship because your unified parental team is much more powerful and effective than each working independently. If you are single you still have a team. Me and Uplift Families are on your team because you are reading this article. You also have people who help with child care, extended family, friends and neighbors, your doctor. Take care of the team.
Love your kids. What’s your job as a parent? It’s to love them no matter what and even if. One of the quickest ways you can be more positive right now, today, as a parent is to connect to that job. We get distracted sometimes and we think, “My job is to make sure they _____ (fill in the blank).” Make sure they are good citizens, they obey, they follow the family values, make sure they… What an aggravating task we often get sucked into as parents. Quite frankly, we are not very good at it! Can we really make sure they... anything? Our children are agents of themselves. They get to choose their course in life. Our job is to love them no matter what and even if. It will make your job easier when you remember: Love your kids.
Discipline your kids. All the research shows that there are two things that are needed for kids to be healthy and well-adjusted. Those two things are love and discipline. You must have both. If you have love and no discipline, your kids go goofy on you. If you have discipline but no love, well, that’s the military. We want to have healthy well-adjusted kids and so we have to have effective forms of discipline. This is where most parents start to get frustrated. There are all kinds of resources available to you including some that I’m offering through The Parenting Power-up where you can learn more about positive discipline and developing a relationship with your kids. Discipline your kids.
You’ve got this,
Dr. Paul is an author, speaker, personal coach and positivity expert with 20+ years experience as a Professional Psychologist. His book Pathological Positivity and its pocket-sized companion Portable Positivity illuminate powerful principles that when applied can make an immediate difference in your life. Dr. Paul's channel Live On Purpose TV, available on YouTube, has a parenting playlist with a wide variety of subjects to help parents create positivity in their parenting. Click here to view the video or contact Dr. Paul at www.drpauljenkins.com.