I have reflected a lot on behaviour management the past couple of weeks. There seems to be an increase in stress among families this time of year, along with problematic behaviours. Unfortunately, there is a reciprocal relationship in which one (e.g., stress) makes the other (e.g., behaviours) worse and vice versa.
I have a little parenting secret: 6 Mississippi’s. I do it daily with my girls. Ten doses a day keeps the blues away. And helps strengthen my connection with my kids.
Bouncing off of last week, I reflected a lot this week on a quote that I heard from Dr. Wayne Dyer, “Change what you see, and what you see changes.” I find this quote holds true in every aspect of life. Every day I hear comments about people wanting to change things – better children, more money, bigger house, more considerate husband, less traffic, nicer weather, new boss, and on and on it goes. These comments all come from a negative outlook, one filled with lack. Year in and year out people make goals to change the world around them. And fail to reach their goals. Or, reach their goals but still remain unhappy. And strive for something else because if they could just get that (whatever that is), will make them happy.
I spent this past weekend at a hotel for my daughter’s ringette tournament. It was… well… chaos, to say the least. Little girls running around the hotel screaming, painting nails, painting banners, watching movies, exploding popcorn everywhere, and dunking each other in the pool; simply creating havoc everywhere they went. To add to the excitement, they severely lacked sleep. Which, of course, resulted in increased tears, whining, and general moodiness. Now, being exhausted myself and overwhelmed with the lack of work I was able to get done this weekend, I was to my limit.
As a parent working full-time, I get how hard it is to balance life, work, family, and all the duties that go along with it. And then the guilt that comes with being a mother. The never-ending guilt that seems to be gifted to most mothers at the time of delivering their first child. I was no exception. I have experienced ongoing remorse of all of the things I should have done for the past seven-and-a-half years. And then, the ultimatum comes after every pity fest: this time, this time, I am going to make changes. I am not going to work so much. I am not going to yell so much. I am going to play more. I am going to, going to, going to…. And you know what happens? I fall back into the exact same old habits that caught me in the guilt trap in the first place. And on and on it goes. The problem is, I set too high expectations to change all at once. The elevator to world’s best mom is broken. I need to take the stairs, one step at a time.