The back-to-school season is quickly approaching, and there’s so much to do! There’s plenty of preparation required to make the transition seamless for kids but they aren’t the only ones who need a little help. Parents need to make big changes, too! Carpools, lunches, work, extracurriculars — the list is endless. So, let’s take a minute to talk about a few things parents can do to get themselves ready for school.
Anger is neither good nor bad; it’s just a normal feeling. How we express our anger is what is most critical. It is an important emotion and can actually be helpful in creating motivation. It can also be dangerous when expressed in an unhealthy way and can lead to bad decisions. You’ve probably heard ideas like telling your child to “count to ten” or “go scream in a pillow”. These are neither practical nor helpful strategies, so here are a few ideas that will help you and your child both manage and express anger is a healthy productive way.
Travel, no matter how near or far, has so many benefits for children. Families often leave the comfort of home to explore new and different people, cultures, environments, and experiences. Not only do family trips create opportunities for families to bond through shared experiences, but they also provide situations that require children to take risks, try something new, and act brave, which can result in courage and greater confidence. But travel isn’t always so easy with kids and can sometimes be a tumultuous experience. Incorporating mindfulness into your travel and adventures is a great way to enhance your family’s experience and teach your children how to appreciate not only the destination, but also the journey. Here are some tips to help you prepare for your trip:
Summer is in full swing now and everyone is embracing the sunshine and the warm weather. With all the fun summer activities, parents tend to get a little more relaxed in their parenting. Being a bit more flexible and going with the flow can be wonderful and liberating, unless you are undoing the habits you worked so hard to maintain the rest of the year. Keeping your parenting consistent with your values during the summer months can definitely be more challenging when everyone is focused on having a fun time. Below are two more ways to be mindful this summer to help keep your family on track and ensure everyone is staying healthy and enjoying themselves.
As we head into summer, it can be helpful to set clear expectations for our kids, in order to avoid challenges and ensure that everyone in the family has fun. The summer months tend to create a relaxed approach to daily life and can often lead to bad habits that then require a lot of time and energy to reverse in the fall. Two ways to maintain consistency and keep things on track are making sure your child gets enough sleep and enforcing clear limits on the use of screens and devices.
Casey invites fellow Positive Discipline Coach, Melissa Benaroya, to discuss surviving Summer Break. In this episode they offer practical tools and solutions to set you and your family up for a successful summer. Two to three months is a long time to keep your kids occupied and stimulated. Get an insight into the importance of boredom and why you don’t have to plan every single second of your children’s vacation. Tune in and learn how routine and summer coexist to help you have fun too!
As Father’s Day approaches, we encourage you to embrace every opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge the father figures in your life. Fathers are significant influencers in the lives of their children; they are no longer valued just for bringing home the figurative bacon. The days of detached fathering are becoming a thing of the past. Dads are more involved than ever in all aspects of childrearing. Research has found that men who are fathers are actually happier than their childless peers. Not only do dads benefit from getting involved, but there are huge benefits for children, too! The latest research points to several areas where dads have an especially profound effect on their daughters’ health and wellbeing.
From time to time I will answer readers questions as they come in. I thought I would share this specific one because this question comes up a lot.
Sometimes my 3-year-old can be sort of mean to her dad- like when he goes to get her in the morning she will scream that she only wants mommy or sometimes she pushes him away when he comes over to say to her when he gets home from work. I know she adores my husband and they have so much fun playing together, but I'm not sure why she acts this way towards him sometimes. Any thoughts?
Making time for exercise can make all the difference in how you show up as a parent, partner and professional. It is virtually impossible to be a calm, empathetic and loving parent when you’re depleted. Self-care can also be a win-win; not only do we feel better, we are modeling behavior for our children and creating opportunities for connection.
A child’s anxiety is stressful to the child and can also be stressful for the child’s family. Anxiety can actually be debilitating for kids. Children may spend endless amounts of time and energy fixated on things such as grades, family issues, peer relationships, and performance in sports, as well as disasters they think might happen or dangers that do not actually exist.
Understanding the different types of anxiety and the options for treatment for children and adolescents is really important. Over the course of the last 5 to 10 years, the practice of mindfulness has received significant attention and gained recognition as an effective means of treating and managing childhood anxiety.
Parenting is hard work, and without consistent self-care parents can easily and quickly burn out. That is why this Mother’s Day it is not only important to do something special for yourself but also to make a plan to incorporate more self-care in your daily life. Many mothers sacrifice their own self-care because they are taking care of everyone else; they leave their own needs until last. This benefits no one in the family! Not only are parents who sacrifice their own self-care less able to manage their own strong emotions and solve problems effectively, they are also modeling poor self-care for their children. And who wants their child to learn that they must sacrifice their own well-being for the sake of others?
One of the biggest challenges for parents these days is managing their children’s use of electronic devices. Devices are the source of many power struggles for modern families. As a parent or caregiver, it’s your responsibility to set limits. Every family’s values and schedules are different, so limits on devices look different from one family to another.
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, which always gets parents thinking about how to keep their children safe. All parents face the same concerns when it comes to the safety of their children: who to trust and who not to trust, what they can do to ensure their children’s safety when they are not present, what to teach their children about safety, and how to teach it.
Many parents feel powerless when it comes to their kids because they cannot get their kids to listen and do the things they want. What they do not realize is that there is so much unspoken power that they hold that they are forgetting to access. It is the power of nurturing a human being, and the kind of relationship we have with them, that will help define who they are and what they do for a lifetime.
In our changing world, teaching children civility is more important than ever. Civility goes beyond being polite and courteous; it involves listening to others with an open mind, disagreeing respectfully, and seeking common ground to start a conversation about differences. By teaching skills like empathy, problem-solving, and perspective taking, we can help nurture civility in our children.
Most parents don’t think of bedtime as an opportunity to connect with their child. Typically, we as parents associate bedtime with a frenzied battle zone in which we are trying to get our child to cooperate and complete tasks such as taking a bath, brushing their teeth, or putting on jammies. In order to make the most of this window of time, I suggest two things:
“Empathy is the ability to feel and understand what another person may be feeling but ultimately … it means connection … and feeling understood.”
What you’ll hear in this episode:
· Learning to use empathy as a first response and a parenting tool
· Empathy as reflecting your child’s feeling back to them versus owning their feelings or relating our own personal experiences
· How using personal experiences in place of empathy can escalate conflict
· How to use empathy to help your child build emotional resilience
· Using empathy effectively to help your child feel heard
· Empathy as a practice and a gradual learning process
· Childhood developmental milestones in empathy
· How to model empathy for your kids
· Using the “Fake It Til You Become It” approach to empathy in your parenting
· Being mindful of your physical self in how you demonstrate and model empathy
· Parenting from the couch as a barrier to empathy
· Echoing, mirroring and repetition as empathy
· The power of validation in feeling heard – when looking on the bright side gets in the way
· Empathy as a transferrable skill.