Lately, I have been overwhelmed with the chaos in my life. I’m trying to get back to enjoying my kids. I wanted a bunch of them and now that I have them, I want to be able to enjoy them. These days, life has been hmmm…less than enjoyable. Sometimes through the fog, it is hard to come up with a way to “fix” things. I am more of a “putting it all out there so you know that you are not alone” kind of person. I’m not that great at coming up with ways to change it for the better. So it is VERY fitting that today my friend and fellow blogger, Adrienne from The Mommy Mess is my guest blogger. I am so very excited to introduce you all to her. She is someone that I have come to rely on as comic relief, support or someone that I can compare to reading a good book. Her blog is a staple in my day and you might recognize her as the author of the blog that I guest posted on last Friday:
For those of you who don’t know me, I am a perfectly imperfect parent.
As much as I want to do all the right things, say all the right things, and think all the right things, something in me (I’m pretty sure it’s that whole human nature thing?) keeps me from motherhood perfection. Sigh…such is life. Anybody?
On most days, I try to embrace these imperfections and find the humor in this parenting gig. After all, if I can’t laugh at my own mistakes, how can I expect my kids to laugh about them when they’re adults. I mean let’s face it. I’d much rather have them laughing about the past than seeking therapy over it! I’ll keep you posted on that down the road.
But, sometimes I’m defeated and tired. Parenting is just too hard.
I cannot tell you how many times I’ve announced some new method or idea that I plan on implementing in the home that is sure to change our lives for the better, only to realize three days later that it was all a bunch of crap and never going to work. I am consistently inconsistent. I bet the boys even place bets behind my back on how long it takes before my plans fall apart.
However, last week I had a revelation! After I filled my prescription for Xanax and a major cloud of PMS passed, I was able to think clearly. I began to implement a new idea in my parenting style and it’s making a huge difference in my home.
So you wanna know the secret? Here it is…Are you sitting?
That’s right. Be positive.
Smile more. Encourage them more.
Replace negative words with positive ones.
Disclaimer: I have no idea if this is already a book or an idea. I’m sure that it is somewhere, so if it was your idea first, please don’t sue me.
It’s pure genius! I made a personal goal to only use positive words when speaking to the kids. I am trying very hard to eliminate words like,“no”, “don’t”, “can’t”, “won’t”, “stop”…you get the idea.
Here’s an example in action…
Old-tired-irritated-angry-mom: “Do NOT act like that in this store!”
New-medicated-happy-mom: “You’re a good boy, and you will act like it.”
And then? He does. It’s like magic.
Here’s another one…
Old mom: “Stop wasting time! You’re never going to finish that if you keep working at that rate.”
New me: “You would have so much more time to play if you finished that assignment before lunch.”
And then? He did! Say what?!
Old me: “Stop! That’s driving me nuts!”
New me: “I could finish this more quickly if you played with that in your room.”
“Ok, Mom. Sorry.” Huh?!
The difference in the reaction I get from my children (and even my husband) is amazing. When I word things with a positive spin, it’s almost impossible for there to be an argument or back-talk. Why didn’t I think of this sooner? Not only does this help the reaction I get from them, but it forces me to use my God given self-control and actually think about what I say before I say it. I know. I told you. Genius.
You are welcome.
All sarcasm and jokes aside, this has changed my home in a matter of days. Days! There is nothing more important to me than my home. I want my boys to feel safe, secure, and loved at all times. I get so caught up in the daily annoyances that I forget that it’s my job to set the tone around here. Lately things have seemed chaotic, and I felt overwhelmed and defeated. But, I know that I am equipped for this task. God gave these kids to me. I just have to look inside myself, rely on my Savior, and take a deep breathe sometimes.
Positive parenting. It’s working!
All bets are off the table on this one. It’s sticking around!
Adrienne is a homeschooling mama to two boys who run her ragged. She’s married to her best friend, and blogs about it all at www.themommymess.com. She’s overwhelmed by testosterone and doesn’t get nearly enough attention at home, so she writes. Mostly about how homeschooling is pretty hard when she’d rather be blogging! Be sure to connect with her on Twitter and Facebook too! You can also subscribe to her RSS Feed to be sure to get the latest updates from The Mommy Mess.
So readers, be sure to comment here (Have you tried positive parenting? Do you have any tips to share?) and then jump over to her blog to read some of my favorite posts of hers (there are way more but you have to go there to find them):
The (NOT) Birthday Party
It’s Hard Having a Teenager
Beyond My Family’s Label
By Grace Alone
I am a follower and I love, love, love how relatable she is. I just love her and I know you will, too.
Thanks for writing, Adrienne!