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Just a Thought…

By December 27, 2015December 18th, 2022Parenting the Strong Willed Child, Uncategorized

Hey Merriment Makers,

I hope you guys are enjoying time off with the family, connecting, making memories and taking lots of well deserved naps.

(Nobody enjoys their bed more than me…except maybe my BFF of 30+ years – you know who you are Carolyn Rubenstein.)

In an effort to support you in making 2016 the most incredible year yet, I am going to share the biggest game changing tool I have learned to date.

This resource has to do with learning how to truly become the driver in that fancy sports car of your life.

The game changer for me has been learning that my thoughts are malleable and not the actual truth.

Before you tune me out because this seems too “heady” or deep, hang on a sec…

Here is a real life example that won’t give you an aneurysm:

Your child backtalks you in front of the stacks of presents that YOU  have been shopping for and wrapping for weeks.  You feel your blood begin to boil and steam shooting out of your ears.  Next comes the finger pointing in his face as you say something like, “You are so ungrateful.  Look at all this crap – do you think I spent all this time buying this stuff for my health?  And now you think it’s o.k. to speak to me in that rude manner?  No sir.  You know what, I think I’m going to return everything.  You don’t deserve it.”

Can you relate?

Why does the back-talking quickly escalate into threats and lectures about gratitude, disrespect and self worth, “You don’t deserve it.”  Are those really the messages you want to leave your child with during the holiday season or frankly, ever?

This example can have a drastically different result if you learn how to change your thoughts the second the back-talking starts.

The thought that occurs when your child speaks to you disrespectfully might be, “He doesn’t appreciate me and all that I do.”  Or it could be, “He is spoiled and not acting like a child that was raised with values and therefore, people are going to judge me as a bad parent when he behaves this way in front of others.”

Of course, it is hard to identify that these are the thoughts that are causing the triggered behavior in the moment.  This is a skill that strengthens with practice.

When you feel physical sensations like your body temp rising, it is due to an internal chemical reaction in your body caused by an underlying painful thought.

Identifying that underlying thought is tricky but SO incredibly helpful when you discover how to do this.

You can learn how to notice when you’re triggered, excavate the thought and replace it with a better thought.

In the example above, a replacement thought could be, “He is cranky and something must be bothering him that put him in a snarky mood.”

If I believe this thought, the conversation goes differently.

It might sound something like, “Hey – why are you speaking like that to me? That doesn’t even sound like you.  Did something happen today?  Are you tired after so much midterm exam stress? I wanna know what’s going on and be able to help but when you speak to me like that it’s really hard to be on your side.  I don’t deserve to be spoken to like that.”

Changing your thoughts is the real game changer and positively affects your relationships.

To start the new year with your best foot forward remember this thought changing tool for ‘resolution’ success.

As I wrote last week, hard work, discomfort and a 40 day commitment are involved in changing a pattern.

You really only need to white knuckle it for 3 or 4 days and then it begins to get easier. To make it through that first week, align your thoughts with a successful outcome.

The discomfort at the beginning of changing a pattern is exacerbated by our sabotaging thoughts:

    “I hate exercise. I just want to lay in my bed.”

    “I look stupid. I’m uncoordinated. I know they are probably laughing at me – in their heads.”

    “Healthy food is gross and tastes bad. I love junk food.”

    “It will be too hard and I don’t do hard.”

    “I would worry less about my kids if they would listen to my advice and stop tuning me out.”

    “This family would run smoothly if I actually got some help from the other members and it didn’t all fall on my shoulders.”

If any of these thoughts resonate with you, then please listen up:




*(Coaches, therapists and boatloads of self help books can teach these ‘thought dissolving’ exercises).

Sending my thoughts of love, joy, success and a life filled with everything you ever wanted in the coming year!

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