Modeling Values For Your Family – Day 3 of Blog Tour
Today I have the great pleasure of being the host on Day 3 of the Virtual Book Tour for the E-Book Parenting Responsively for Connection. (Order here-link to your web site or HeartwiseParent.com), Written by ACPI Parenting Coaches for parents to deal with the most difficult task of maintaining connection with the growing child whose behavior changes and shifts.
Yesterday, the book tour stopped by Lesa Day’s blog at http://www.yesIcanandIwill.com
Visit now if you haven’t had the opportunity to meet all the authors.
Meantime enjoy this book excerpt written by yours truly, Dr. Minette Riordan
How to model the values that are important to you.
The old adage that our children do what we do and not what we say is appropriate here. If you treat other people with kindness and respect, your children will too. If you say please and thank you, your children will too. If you are honest and tell the truth, so will they be. Your children watch your every move. One of my favorite parenting quotes of all times is by author and expert, Joseph Chilton Pearce who said, “We must become the people we want our children to be.” What are you modeling for your children on a regular basis? Do you talk to your children like you would talk to your favorite girlfriend? Sometimes I see parents speak to children so harshly that I wonder how the child holds up under the criticism. We all have moments when we are tired, overwhelmed or downright cranky. We are entitled to have bad days and difficult emotions. It is not all right to take that out on our children.
My job as a publisher is deadline driven, and I can become stressed out and grumpy when a deadline is close. I have certainly had days when I snapped at my children and had to apologize and make it up later. What I realized is that I needed to communicate clearly with my children what was happening. I now let them know in advance that deadline week is coming and that I will be working extra hours. I tell them when it will be over and what we are going to do to spend extra time together once I am free to do so. We all feel better knowing exactly what is happening and why.
They know that my stress is not related to them and that they will have my time and attention back soon. Knowing what is happening is very important to children. Tell them when you are sad or upset or stressed. They can handle it! If you do not share the truth with them, they will often think it is their fault, they will feel unloved and insecure. This is not our intention, but it happens. By treating our children with loving kindness and honesty, they will reflect that back to us and to others. They will feel free to share their sorrows and challenges. This is especially critical for those of us who are parenting teens and tweens.
Talk to your children about values.
Make it fun. Keep it simple and start early. When you give children language to talk about big concepts, they will amaze you with their understanding and insight. When you see an example of a particular value, point it out to your child. Maybe someone donated a lot of money to a local charity or your son’s Cub Scout troop collected trash at a local park. Maybe your child was a victim of bullying at school. Use the opportunity to talk to your child about self-respect and the importance of treating others like you want to be treated. There is a wonderful online program that offers a guided 12-month program for teaching children about values. You can find more information online at http://www.valuesparenting.com or at http://www.marybuxton.com.
Another easy idea is to pick one value a week to focus on. Start with your top ten and then pick other words. Let your kids pick the word or you could put all the words in a jar and draw one each week to talk about. Find examples to share in your own week, the news, or at work or school that will help illustrate the value for your children.
For example, both of our children take Tae Kwando lessons. They recently had a belt test for their purple belt. To pass the test they had to practice hard, show respect and discipline plus some creativity. They also had to push through their nerves and have fun. We took the opportunity to tell them how proud we are of their progress but we also used this test as an example of how they were great examples of our family values. My children are both very kind and showed loving kindness to other children who were nervous and struggling with the moves they needed to know. I am so proud of the way they embrace and model our core values, without any prompting from us!
Be sure to follow the Virtual Book Tour tomorrow when the next stop is the blog http://academyforcoachingparents.com/blog with Dr. Caron Goode
As usual, please share your comments and thoughts below. I love reading your feedback. We appreciate the retweets and sharing on FB to spread the word.