Friday, January 27, 2017

Week 4: Authenticity,, Values, and Personality

Welcome to Week 4

Over the course of the last three weeks we have talked about your top ten values. Over the last two you have examined three and created statements as needed to re-train you subconscious voice. This week it is time to do a combination of things.

1. Continue the values part of the journey.

You have taken the time to examine your values and think about how they are being lived in your life. Now I want you  to use the tools you have gained to re-do steps two and three with the next three values on your list. By the end of the week you should strive to have at least one new statement to add to the list you repeat three times a day.

2. Take a personality test.

Authenticity requires we know the strengths and weekness of our personality. Self-acceptance and being comfortable in your won skin comes from know who you are and knowing your strength and weakness. This is also important in parenting. Children are very observant and they know which buttons to put in order to get their way. When the adults know their weaknesses and are aware of how to overcome them children are less likely to be able to sway them in their direction. Use the link below to take the inventory. Once you are finished read the strength and weaknesses of your personality trait. Also, read the highest and lowest number of your columns. This shows you what areas you consider important.Personality Inventory 

3. Journal about your thoughts based on your findings. What do these results tell you about yourself? Are you surprised? What are you happy about? Sad? Worried? Surprised?

4. Begin to discuss with your spouse or significant other the changes you are working on for yourself. Share with them the  insights, the feelings and the conflicts you are experiencing.You are in the process of some deep changes take your partner on the journey with you. It is your relationship which creates the foundation of your family. Keep it strong!

Believe in Parenting

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Week 3 Aligning Your Beliefs

Welcome to week 3 of  The Journey to Authenticity

I am going to share with you a little about my current Journey to Authenticity.
Last week I asked you to look at your top three beliefs and to take the time to look at them and figure out what your subconscious mind is saying to you and whether or not it agrees with what you believe. It is now time to change your thoughts so that they are aligned with your beliefs.

I want you to know that I'm taking this journey with you.

My goal in this journey is to align  my physical body is with what I believe is important for physical health. Therefore for this week I am going to use myself as an example.

My journey

 I believe that in order for a person to be healthy they must also be fit. However over the years I have said to myself over and over again that I need to lose weight. I've come to understand that losing weight and being fit are not the same thing.

 A friend told me a story of how a friend who was a size 4 and a friend who was a size 22 went to get their body mass measured in order to help the size 22 begin to lose weight. The interesting thing is once they had their body mass measured, it turned out that the size 4 had the exact same BMI as the size 22.  Which means neither one of them were in a healthy place. As it turns out the size 4 had much more work to do than the size 22. This led me to begin to understand that fitness and being overweight are not the same thing. It was a bit of irony to me when I figured out that being small does not necessarily mean you are not fat. Since I now realize that what I really want is not to lose weight but to be fit I have to change what I've been saying to myself .

There's a prophecy that says what you believe comes from what you say. Therefore it stands to reason that if I want to become fit instead of lose weight I need to change what I'm thinking is to change what I'm saying.

In the past I have said and thought, "I need to lose weight." However, with my new understanding I need to stop saying that to myself.  The goal is now  fitness.  I need to change what I'm saying from I need to lose weight to, * I need to develop a fit and healthy body".

Your Journey

Okay, you have my example so here is your challenge. Come up with three new things to say to yourself. One in each area. Then write them down. Each day three times a day get up, midday, and before you go to bed read them out loud. If you think of it during the day quote it. The more you say what you believe the faster it will become part of your subconscious voice. Remember your goal is to get your inner voice to tell you what your values are so you can change your words and your actions.
Which is the ultimate goal you want for your kids. Our goal is authentic parenting. Keep going it is worth it.

Believe in parenting

Monday, January 16, 2017

Helping your Kids Make Friends

I love early childhood it is the neatest part of life. It is around the age of three to eight when children begin to think of being and having a friend. It starts out with the funny, sweet bargaining of I will be your friend if...  children do not l Then moves onto I am not your friend and five minutes later we are friends again. Then five minutes later back to broken friendship.

Imaginary friends tend to appear here because some children find the negotiation a little overwhelming. An imaginary friend likes all the things I like and hates all the things I hate. Which is not true of another person. The next stage of frienship moves into understanding friendship versus manipulation and the difference between friends, predators, manipulators, and bullies. Finally, it becomes the stable, happy, place of having true friends. How well and quickly children move through these stages of friendship can depend on temperament, personality, and developmental trends within each child. However, parental support can also make a giant and profound difference. There are four ways parents can support friendship development.

  • Talk about friendship and what it is
  • Develop and Model Good Friendships 
  • Give Kids lots of opportunities to interact with others
  • Be aware of your child's relationships and ask questions which allow them to examine a persons actions as friendly or not
Talk about Friendship

There are three things I recommend parents talk about when describing friendship: liking similar things, agreeing on most things and agreeing to disagree on others, liking to spend time with one another, and always caring for and defending a friend when they are right or helping them to understand when they are wrong.These are the basic characteristics of friendship. When children are taught these characteristics and taught to look for them within their relationships they begin to recognize friends.

Model Good Friendships
Many times adult men  the fact that children are watching their friendships.  friendships. Children can learn a lot of things I'm listening but more often than not they learn through observation. Having good stable friendships that model before think their friendship are about help your children begin to understand what friendship really is. If you are modeling an unhealthy relationship your children will automatically look at that relationship and not what you say it's what friends are. ,

Therefore I encourage you to step back and look at the relationships you have are they modeling good friendships. One way to do this is to ask your yourself is this relationship 1 I would like my child have in the future. If your answer is then it's a relationship that needs to change.

This means you need to have a heart-to-heart talk with your friend about the kind of relationship you have and how you want to model good friendships for your children.  depending when the friend it may mean that you being stronger ways of communicating or sometimes it just means you have to part ways. Ultimately what's really important is that you are focused on creating relationships in your life that you would like your children to emulate.

Help kids develop a Social Circle

We often think that our children have friends in school and sometimes they do but more often than not children have friends based on what they like to do and activities they enjoy. Talk to your kids about what they like to do is an art science dance outdoorsy activities whatever it is find ways for them to get involved and do the things that they like once they're involved and those activities they are more likely to make friend because I already have things in common with the kids were there.

I love the idea of play dates even for kids who are older say 8 to 10. Sometimes our friends live in the same neighborhood but more often in today's world they do not. Allowing kids to plan outings where they meet with their friends and locations as parent wander around to keep an eye on them while they engaged with one another is a great way to encourage friendship for your kids. If you belong to a religious community any kind of kids activities that are involved there is also a really good place for your children to develop friendships.

Teach your kids to be discerning

Children are still learning about friendships matter of fact many adults don't worry about friendships this means that we need to help them to learn to recognize when someone is a friend or when someone want to either manipulate or bully them. Our first inclination is to lecture them about what a friend is but actually the best way to do this is to begin to after child open ended questions about the relationship they're involved in. Deep questions do not have a yes or no answer but rather they are designed to get your children to think. Here some examples:

One of the Hallmarks of friendship is that you and the person you're friends with like to do things together I noticed that a lot of the time you do what Matt wants do you think that's what friend do?

I noticed you were uncomfortable when Mark was pointing out your mistakes to the other boys. Do you think that Matt is showing you support when he acts that way?

What is Ann doing in your relationship that makes you uncomfortable what would you rather Ann do?

Ask Angie questions will help you too get your kid to think about their relationships and ensure that they have those going forward in the future about people in their lives. 

Helping your kids make friends is not so much about choosing the kids your children will become friends with it is more about teaching your children what friendship looks like no matter who the person is. I suggest that before you start talking to your kids about friendship you use the same tool to look at your own relationship first. 85% of what children learn they learn from watching you. I hope this blog helps you to think more about the relationships that you keep your children to build and the relationships You're Building yourself.

 Believe in Parenting

Friday, January 13, 2017

Authenticity Week Two: Your Subconscious Voice

Welcome to Week Two

Last week I asked you to write down your top ten values and your whys. This week we are going to begin to examine your subconscious and how it effects your thinking. It is very easy to let things we have heard or read effect how we think. Therefore, we can begin to think in ways which effect our belief system to both the positive and the negative.

For this week we are going to concentrate on your first thee values.

In what ever way you are journaling. I want you to write your values and the why leave space between them. If you are using a journal leave two or three pages between them.

 Over the next week each time you come across a situation in your life which has to do with the value write a  paragraph on it. You will find lots of opportunities to write. Because you are now focused on these particular values. It will pop out to you each time it comes up.

Next Thursday evening, I want you to sit down and read over what you have notice over the last wee. Are your thoughts, words, and actions lining up with what you believe? Write a paragraph regarding each on on how you do or do not see your beliefs, thoughts, words, and actions aligning. You will use these paragraphs to help you the following wee.

Keep in mind as you interact with your children you should be working diligently
 to model authenticity. This alignment is all about giving yourself and them a blueprint for living an authentic life.

Believe in Parenting

Friday, January 6, 2017

Snowed In: Five things to do with Your Kids

Welcome to winter 2017! This weekend most folks in the US are snowed in. Even here in Georgia we are going to be trapped indoors. After about an 5 hours kids are going to get stir crazy and parents are too. Here are some suggestions on things to do which will help pass the time and build fun memories.

  1. Read/Listen to a novel together. I suggest a classic novel (Little Women, The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, Huckleberry Finn, Charlotte's Web)  This would be a great download to your tablet. Think of a book you loved and read it to your kids. This would be a great way for you all to relax in your comfy family space. You can just read aloud or through Kindle you can download Audible and everyone can listen.
  2. Teach your kids to cook a favorite family recipe. Something you cooked with someone special in your life. Tell them the story about when you learned to cook it.
  3. Dig out a board game. A long playing board game like Monopoly, Phase 10, Ono, or Life can kill hours of time and give you and opportunity just to talk.
  4. Make home made play dough (recipe below). Create Sculptures. Bake them (300 degrees, 1 hour). Then paint them. Once they dry you have a great memento of your time showed in.
  5. Plan your family's dream summer vacation. Get everyone's input. Use markers, crayons, and colored pencils to draw or list out ideas. Cut magazine pictures to make a collage. Print things off the internet. Then put them all together in a family dream vacation booklet.
Play Dough Recipe

1 cup flour
1/4 cup salt
1/2 cup warm water


Mix flour and salt. Add water mixing slowly until it comes together. The mixture should not be sticky, if it is add more flour. Once mixed knead for five minutes until smooth. Then it is ready to mold.

I hope these ideas help you to think beyond TV, movies, and video games. This time is a great opportunity to build relationships and family togetherness. Get creative. If you have a craft or hobby you love, teach it to your kids. Tell stories about when you grew up. Make popcorn on the stove. Have fun. Make this time count!

Believe in Parenting

Authenticity Begins with Values

Hello welcome to the journey to Authenticity!

This blog and all others in this series are small steps you can take each week to begin to move into a more authentic life. If at any time you feel you need more assistance or find you would like to move further faster along on this journey I am available for coaching. My contact information is in the sidebar. 

Beliefs and Values

Each person conducts their lives based on their inner foundation. This foundation is made up of our beliefs and subconscious speech. We also conform to others beliefs and often conform to society's perimeters. Living an authentic life starts with examining our own belief system and focusing on what our inner foundation is and living our lives based on those things and excluding everything else.

In this post we are going to examine our values. 

Values Defined

  1. a person's principles or standards of behavior; one's judgment of what is important in life.
    "they internalize their parents' rules and values"

    synonyms:principles, ethics, moral code, morals, standards, code of behavior

    "society's values are passed on to us as children"

Based on this definition values are the things we think are most important. I would say the things we think are most important on a personal and interactive level. What is important to you as you look at yourself and what kind of person you want to be. Beyond yourself and the person you want to be; what is important to you in how you interact with other people?

What do you value?
Our lives are founded on a code of behavior defined by what we hold as important. These standards may be:
  • Honesty
  • Love
  • Justice
  • Openness
  • Trustworthiness
  • Volunteering
  • Faithfulness
  • Service
  • Mercy
  • Humility
The list is endless. However, we all have between eight and ten we consistently consider important. I note this because the closer we get to the tenth value on the list the less likely we are to place primary importance on it. Examining our values gives us the opportunity to thoroughly consider just which areas we think of as most important.

Here is your first exercise:
Write down your top ten values. Then over the course of the next week write down why this value is important to you. Try to limit your why's to two sentences. Clarity is important in this process. If you need more than two sentences you are not truly clear on why this value is important. Here is an example.
Mercy is important to me. Because I think most people do the best they can, where they are. Mercy gives people a do over. 
I suggest you get yourself an Authenticity Journal where you can write your thoughts down and go back to them as needed. You are welcome to comment and discuss your thoughts here. If you feel stuck or just would like feedback from what others who are also on this journey sharing your comments can only help. If you submit your email above you will get new post delivered to your email automatically.

Remember this journey is all about you living your life based on what you believe and think. No one can do this for you and the experience will prepare you to give your children the tools they need to live authentic lives. I hope you enjoy the journey. All the best!

Believe in Parenting

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Authentic Parenting in 2017

My Journey

Many years ago as I began my journey to find out what I was sent to Earth to do, I was very surprised to learn my call is in parenting. Although, I have always loved children and have been babysitting since age 13, becoming a teacher was the last thing I wanted. Yet, my journey towards becoming a parent development expert started with my graduation from Harris-Stowe Teachers' College now a University in 1989.At the same time I started my journey to become more authentic.

As a big believer in the saying you 'can not lead where you have not been.' I began the journey towards becoming more me. It started with my exploring my own values and ended with the ever challenging process of getting my everyday life to reflect my core beliefs. (This journey took me over 25 years and I am still working on it daily)

Your Journey

I call parenting the toughest job you will ever love and hate. People love being a parent because looking into the face of a child brings joy. Listening to their laughter, silly jokes, endless questions, and watching their eyes light up with new knowledge brings a smile to parents' faces. People hate it because as keen observers children reflect without fail all of the characteristics about ourselves we would rather remain hidden

There is only one way to make this better. You guessed it; the answer is to become more authentic. Over the course of 2017, I am going to release a series of weekly post designed to help you to become more authentic. Let me start by giving you the definition of authenticity.

Authenticity is the alignment of your beliefs, thoughts, words, and actions. It is the ability of being able to show what you really believe in your worlds and actions. 

The Start

Each week I will release a post and an exercise to take you a little further down the path to becoming more authentic not just as a parent, but for yourself. During this journey your inner relationship will change. We will be working on what you say to yourself and if what you say agrees with your beliefs. As your conversations with yourself changes so will the conversations you have with your children. 

This journey we are about to embark on is all about you. Before we start take time to to be honest about what you need. Becoming authentic is not easy, because most of us are comfortable living our lives based on other people's thoughts and beliefs. This journey will lead you to say no to many people, starting with  yourself.  I am warning you because people do not like to hear the word no. Especially, if you have not made a practice of using it. You will find yourself in uncomfortable situations on this journey. Be prepared for it!

The journey to authenticity is a journey to become true to yourself and to your children. Ultimately, the reason for this journey is because authenticity is a gift you can only give to your children, if you give it to yourself first. This gift is your foundation of living well. 

Believe in Parenting