In a post last week, I shared my gratitude for the change in my relationship with my children. It prompted the question: “what specifically did you do differently?” It is a great question and one for which many of us seek answers.
Yesterday, I shared the first 5 changes that I made for my children, and today I share the second 5:
6. I started to think of my kids as people. There is always room to get better at this. Prior to each interaction with my children I question whether it is the way I would interact with a friend, or store clerk. If not, I adjust.
7. I challenged every belief I have ever had. Even when my child hears “no” from me or is upset by my answer, I can still be comfortable with the way I handled things. If the way I handled a situation feels uncomfortable, I spend time thinking about why. These reflections give me insight into what I am doing thoughtlessly and simply because “it is the way it is done”.
8. I committed to identifying and letting go of preconceived notions. I tuned out beliefs that did not feel right and looked for ones that did. (See # 3 posted yesterday).
9. I got my spouse on board. I am sure it was hard for my husband to hear that he was doing things that were pushing him away from his children. He quickly overcame his ego for the sake of our kids though, and he got on board. Kris is not a reader, so he gave me permission to share everything I was learning with him- even in the moment.
10. I noted the difference in our relationship, and let it inspire me. I quickly started noticing how positively my children were responding to these changes. They became more confident, less confused, and easier to live with. Our arguments stopped and whining nearly ceased. They smiled more, I smiled more. These changes were motivating. They inspired me to dig deeper and continue on this path.
Some of these changes were hard at first and I fumbled through them. There were pauses in our conversation at times that seemed strange. I had to think through things so that I could choose how I would react. Now, these reactions come easily, quickly and sometimes even naturally.
What changes have you made that have improved your family dynamic? What changes have you noticed in your children?