♥ Inspiration: Read this meme and if it resonates with you, I invite you to read on…
♥ Insight: Something for you to ponder…
Very few of us like being the ‘Bad Guy’. It’s not that we really are the ‘Bad Guy’ as much as it is that we are perceived by our children as being just that…or we allow ourselves to feel like we are. Children don’t like being told NO by us just as much as we don’t like being told NO by them. Quite simply, nobody likes having a limit or restriction imposed on them, nor do they enjoy having their wants or wishes thwarted by another. The overwhelming sensation of frustration that it creates can feel unbearable. Our human instinct is to pushback against that which we do not want and it takes a great deal of maturity not to react overtly when this happens.
Being a parent requires us to say NO a few times a day and some days more than others. It’s easier to follow through when we can remind ourselves in the moment that the discomfort we may be feeling is secondary to what is needed from us by our child. When we wimp out of saying no for the sake of peace, to avoid a tantrum or to circumvent our own feelings of discomfort we’re doing a disservice to our child. We all do it sometimes (Of course we do!) but knowing that doing so far too often is jeopardizing our children’s journey to maturation is what can jolt us into taking responsible action when needed.
Growing up to become a resilient adult requires us to have ample opportunity as a child to practice the feelings of upset and disappointment that come with not always having things our own way. When we deprive our children of this experience we are indeed spoiling them in the sense that we are limiting their opportunities for emotional and psychological growth.
Let me be quite clear about this: Just saying NO isn’t going to get the job done. What is required is a NO expressed in a calm and grounded manner, followed by the realistic expectation that resistance will likely come in its wake. When it happens we can’t lose our minds and morph into an enforcer who ups the ante by raising our voice and waving our hands while repeating “I said NO!’
Instead we have to keep ourselves in check and hold the NO in place despite the upset and the discomfort we’re feeling and our child is displaying. Each time we do so in a soft hearted way we provide our children with a safe experience to build another layer of resilience. That’s the true purpose of saying NO and we can be the ones to gift it to our children.
♥ Intention: If you feel moved to set an intention for today, this could be it…
Today I will try and keep my focus on what is needed by my child rather than what is wanted by my child. I will keep in mind that although saying NO may make me feel uncomfortable, I am acting in what I believe to be in the best interests of my child. While they might not respond well to my holding a boundary in place, knowing that I am serving them well in the long term will make it possible for me to do so. I will rise above my own discomfort and do what is needed rather than what is wanted.
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