Doesn’t it feel awesome when someone acknowledges and appreciates you for who you really are?
When you can be your natural — uncensored — true self?
Without fitting into anyone’s “mold” or expectations?
Now think, for just a moment, of a time when you were a kid and you received a criticism (from your parent, or an adult) . . .
Don’t be silly
Stop that crying
You’re too noisy
You’re being selfish
You’re just like ________ !
Why can’t you be more like ________?
Shame on you
If you ever heard anything like one of the above criticisms, I bet you still might do, or not do, something because of the impression it made.
As a kid I was told that I was too loud and too noisy. At school I got in trouble for talking too much.
For many years (way into my adult life), I was over-sensitive about this. I’d play those critical statements from my childhood over and over in my head.
I tried to stifle my natural exuberance and enthusiasm, and tone down the sound and volume of my laugh.
How fortunate for me, and my daughters, that I finally learned that my uniqueness was cool — and a good thing! — and I started to give myself permission to be the real person that I am. Feels great!
Just one statement can make a child try hard to be different than who they really are.
Just one statement — even without intention to hurt — may be played over and over in your child’s head for years.
Respect and honor your child’s unique self.
Your job as a parent is to
encourage your child to fully express who SHE KNOWS she is.
Strive to accept and appreciate those things about her that are unique.
Hit the pause button before statements that discourage her fly out of your mouth.
If her crying is getting to you, consider saying, “Wow. I hear that you’re really upset”. One of the most important things you can do is to validate feelings first.
Or, think about that “shame on you” one (ouch!) . . . being ashamed is not going to encourage anyone to change their behavior. It just feels bad.
It’s essential to be able to fully express WHO YOU ARE TOO.
Model for her how to love and celebrate her
Results Parenting will help you do that!
And . . . please leave your comments below in the “leave a reply” place!