Η «κατάρα» της τέλειας μάνας

Μέσα σε μια στιγμή αποκτάς ένα από τους σημαντικότερους τίτλους ως γυναίκα. Αυτόν της μαμάς. Ιδέα δεν έχεις όμως τι ακριβώς σημαίνει, αν και έχεις διαβάσει αμέτρητα άρθρα και βιβλία για να προετοιμαστείς…

Έρχονται στιγμές που συνειδητοποιείς ότι δεν ξέρεις τίποτα. «Μα πως γίνεται; Είχα διαβάσει  ΤΑ ΠΑΝΤΑ! Γιατί δεν τα καταφέρνω; Μήπως κάνω λάθος;» σκέφτεσαι σιωπηλά και φοβισμένα…

Δεν φτάνει που έχεις ένα εκατομμύρια ερωτήσεις και φόβους για αυτόν τον ρόλο, λαμβάνεις συνεχώς λανθασμένες και καταστροφικές «κατευθυντήριες γραμμές»

«Για να είσαι καλή μαμά, πρέπει μόλις γεννηθούν τα παιδιά σου να σταματήσεις να ασχολείσαι με οτιδήποτε άλλο. Να παραμερίσεις τον εαυτό σου και όλη σου η ζωή να περιστρέφεται γύρω από τα παιδιά σου. Να μην λυπάσαι, να μην κουράζεσαι, να μην φωνάζεις, να μην κλαις, να μην κάνεις λάθος …» και η ατελείωτη λίστα συνεχίζεται…

Νιώθεις να έχεις βαλτώσει… φοβάσαι μπας και η «ύπαρξη» σου κάνει κακό σε αυτό το πλάσμα που με τόση ανυπομονησία έφερες στον κόσμο.  «Πως θα γίνω η τέλεια μαμά; Γιατί το παιδί μου δεν τα καταφέρνει όπως τα άλλα; Εγώ φταίω; ΓΙΑΤΙ ΔΕΝ ΤΑ ΚΑΤΑΦΕΡΝΩ;»

Σε καταλαβαίνω απόλυτα. Ήμουν, είμαι και θα είμαι και εγώ σε αυτή τη θέση… Να αναρωτιέμαι αν πράττω σωστά. Αν είμαι ο «άγγελος» ή ο «δαίμονας» της ψυχής τους.

Θέλω λοιπόν να σου μεταφέρω τις σκέψεις αυτές που κάνουν τους φόβους και τις ανησυχίες μου τα καταλαγιάζουν κάθε φορά που βγαίνουν εκτός ελέγχου!

Σήμερα, γιορτάζουμε εμείς ΟΙ ΜΑΝΟΥΛΕΣ! Οι υπέροχες, μοναδικές και ανεπανάληπτες μανούλες. Και ξέρεις γιατί γιορτάζουμε; Γιατί όλα αυτά που καλούμαστε να κάνουμε είναι τόσο δύσκολα αλλά συνάμα και τόσο πολύτιμα.

1.  Σταμάτα να αναζητάς την τελειότητα! Δεν υπάρχει σωστό και λάθος.

Ξέρω… ακούγεται τρελό… αλλά το πρώτο κ το πιο σημαντικό βήμα για να γίνεις η τέλεια μαμά, είναι να δεχτείς ότι δεν είσαι τέλεια! Να δεχτείς ότι δεν μπορείς να πετύχεις τα πάντα (τουλάχιστον από την πρώτη φορά) και ότι στην πραγματικότητα δεν χρειάζεται καν να μπορείς! Η «τελειότητα» είναι καταστροφική για σένα και για τα παιδιά σου.

Ίσως «Η ΑΠΟΔΟΧΗ» να είναι αυτό που πρέπει να επιδιώκεις.

Στην προσπάθεια μας, να μεγαλώσουμε παιδιά χωρίς «ψυχολογικά προβλήματα», τέλεια στο σχολείο, όμορφα, συγυρισμένα και να τα καταφέρνουν σε κάθε δραστηριότητα που κάνουν, καταντούμε να είμαστε πιεστικές για τα παιδιά μας αλλά και για εμάς.

Η «τελειότητα» είναι το κύριο συστατικό της δυστυχίας αφού προσπαθούμε συνεχώς να φτάσουμε έναν ιδανικό - Κάτι το οποίο δεν είναι πραγματικότητα.

Η μαγική λέξη είναι η «αποδοχή». Κάποια παιδιά χρειάζονται περισσότερο χρόνο για να «ανθίσουν» από άλλα. Το ίδιο και εμείς οι μαμάδες.

Κάποιες χρειαζόμαστε περισσότερο χρόνο από άλλες για να «ανθίσουμε». Ίσως περισσότερη προσπάθεια ή πιο πολύ χρόνο… Τι σημασία έχει; Εφόσον κάνεις ότι καλύτερο μπορείς ΕΙΣΑΙ ΑΡΚΕΤΗ.

Αν λοιπόν ακόμα ψάχνεις το μυστικό της τέλεια μαμάς… αυτό είναι η αποδοχή (και η υπομονή). Να δίνουμε χώρο και χρόνο σε εμάς, αλλά και στα παιδιά μας να «ανθίζουμε» στην κατάλληλη στιγμή. Να  αφήνουμε τα παιδιά μας να υπάρχουν ελεύθερα. Να αποφεύγουμε να τα καθοδηγήσουμε για τα πάντα… τον τρόπο που θα εκφραστούν, θα ντυθούν, θα μιλήσουν…

Χρειάζεται θάρρος να επιτρέψουμε την ελευθερία και να αφήσουμε τα παιδιά μας να λάμψουν, αλλά μέσα από αυτή τη διαδικασία ωριμάζουμε και εμείς. Άλλωστε δεν είναι αυτή η μαγεία της ζωής;

2. Στόχευε στη δική σου προσωπική ανάπτυξη

Όσο εμείς καθοδηγούμαστε από τον αρχικό μας προγραμματισμό, γεμάτο με αρνητικές πεποιθήσεις και αχρείαστα  πρέπει, θα συνεχίζουμε να πιέζουμε τα παιδιά μας, με βάση τους δικούς μας φόβους και ανασφάλειες. Δεν υπάρχει τίποτα που «πρέπει» να γίνει. Πραγματικά, πρέπει επιτέλους να πιστέψουμε ότι μας αξίζει να ζήσουμε όπως εμείς θέλουμε, και να μεγαλώσουμε και τα παιδιά μας με τον ίδιο τρόπο.

Το μεγαλύτερο δώρο που προσφέρω στα παιδιά μου είναι η δική μου προσωπική ανάπτυξη. Να μαθαίνω ποια πράγματα με παρακινούν, ποια στέκονται εμπόδιο στην ευτυχία μου, τι φοβάμαι και φυσικά, ποια είναι τα δυνατά στοιχεία της προσωπικότητας μου.

3. Να θυμάσαι και να τιμάς την «γυναίκα»

Είσαι ένα υπέροχο όν… ονομάζεσαι ΓΥΝΑΙΚΑ. Γνωρίζεις τι ακριβώς σημαίνει; Τιμάς την θηλυκότητα σου; περιποιείσαι το υπέροχο σου σώμα; Κράτησες τα στοιχεία μέσα από τα οποία αναδύεται η «θεά Αφροδίτη» μέσα σου; Λες να μην τα βρήκες ποτέ; Μήπως ξέχασες στην πορεία την «υπεροχή» σου;

Πολλές μανούλες θυσιάζουν τη θηλυκότητα τους στο βωμό της λέξης «Μαμά». Μα γιατί;
Γιατί ο ρόλος σου ως μαμά να είναι μια ταλαιπωρία αντί να’ ναι μαγεία; Μήπως αυτό διδάχτηκες;

Εσύ; Θα ήθελες να διδάξεις στο παιδί σου αυτό το λανθασμένο πρότυπο;

Θέλουμε να μεταφέρουμε στα παιδιά μας ότι η ζωή είναι ωραία παρά τα σκαμπανεβάσματα της και όχι ότι η ζωή είναι δύσκολη – ένας ατέλειωτος, ταλαίπωρος αγώνας. Μήπως διδαχτήκαμε να μην είμαστε ευτυχισμένοι;

Μάθε να ζεις, να απολαμβάνεις. Βάλε προτεραιότητα τον εαυτό σου. Κάνε πάντα ΜΙΑ τουλάχιστον δραστηριότητα στη ζωή σου (γυμναστική, χορό, ζωγραφική, ποίηση κτλ) που σε ευχαριστεί και που σε γεμίζει ενέργεια.

Κάνε κάτι για τον εαυτό σου που θα σου δίνει χαρά, ηρεμία και ικανοποίηση, οτιδήποτε, που κάνει την καρδιά σου να χτυπά. Ότι σε κάνει να ΖΕΙΣ!

Η αλήθεια είναι ότι, αν δεν νοιαζόμαστε και αν δεν προσέχουμε τον εαυτό μας, είναι σχεδόν αδύνατο να  βοηθήσουμε οποιοδήποτε άλλο. Ίσως όμως  χρειάζεται να δούμε το χρόνο μας από μια άλλη οπτική γωνία ώστε να μπορέσουμε να τον αξιοποιήσουμε διαφορετικά; Ίσως να θέσουμε διαφορετικές προτεραιότητες;

Να έχουμε προτεραιότητα τα δικά μας ενδιαφέροντα, να θρέφουμε με αγάπη το σώμα, το μυαλό και τη ψυχή μας. Να πάμε για καφέ με τις φίλες μας χωρίς ψεύτικες δικαιολογίες όπως «θα πάω δουλειά». Να λέμε την αλήθεια «θα πάω για καφέ με τις φίλες μου». Είναι δικαίωμά μας. Να έχουμε χρόνο με τον σύζυγό μας αλλά και με τον εαυτό μας.

Για να είσαι καλή μαμά, προτεραιότητα σου είναι να  είσαι ευτυχισμένη. Ότι και αν διαβάσεις, όποια τεχνική και αν ακολουθήσεις, από την στιγμή που «το ποτήρι της χαράς» σου είναι άδειο, τότε λίγες οι πιθανότητες να απολαύσεις την πορεία αυτή. Το μόνο πράγμα που θέλουν από εμάς τα παιδιά μας είναι να βλέπουν μια χαρούμενη μαμά. Αξιολογήστε τις στιγμές που νιώθετε καλά και θα δείτε με τι ενθουσιασμό κ χαρά σας παρακολουθούν.

Δίνε στον εαυτό σου ελαφρυντικά. Κατανόησε. Αγάπησε τον εαυτό σου έτσι ακριβώς όπως είναι. Κάνε ότι καλύτερο μπορείς και αν δεν έχεις φτάσει στην ευτυχία και τη γαλήνη μην παραιτείσαι. Αναζήτησε, ρώτησε, μάθε και πάνω απ’ όλα ΠΡΑΞΕ.

Η ευτυχία και η συναισθηματική ισορροπία δεν κατακτιόνται από τη μια στιγμή στην άλλη και φυσικά δεν γίνονται τυχαία.

Η τελειότητα που ψάχνεις και ο τίτλος της «σωστής μαμάς» είναι καταστροφικές προσδοκίες που σε κρατούν μακριά από την αποδοχή του εαυτού σου και των παιδιών σου και από την εμπειρία της πραγματικής ευτυχίας. Μην πέφτεις στην παγίδα… Αναρωτήσου… Διεύρυνε τους ορίζοντες σου. Κάθε βήμα έξω από τα γνώριμα σου είναι τεράστιο και αξιόλογο!

Αφήνοντας σε αγαπημένη μου, να σε θυμίσω πως δεν υπάρχει σωστό και λάθος. Υπάρχουν μόνο άνθρωποι που εξελίσσονται και προχωρούν στη ζωή μαθαίνοντας μέσα από τις εμπειρίες τους.

Συνέχισε να «περπατάς» πλημμυρίζοντας με αγάπη και αποδοχή εσένα… σε κάθε βήμα και κάθε στιγμή… Είσαι υπέροχη έτσι ακριβώς όπως είσαι! Μην το ξεχνάς!

Should we fear Digital Evolvement?

I am writing here as an ex techy and a current Human Kind Lover!

I studied Information Technology and Multimedia design around 20 years ago…it was then where the digital evolution was at its first steps.

I still remember the day I bought a computer with a... CD WRITER! I was in absolute bliss! I could save 700MB on ONE CD??? Wow!!! You do realise that today we can save 1TB on a tiny SD card huh?

I have been amazed by this evolution for many years! I was SO focused and devoted in this field! I studied 3D animation at a time that 3D models looked completely fake and now you can barely distinguish the 3D scenes in a movie…

Well,... at some point in my life, everything was going horribly wrong… I had a job that I hated and I was in a pretty dead marriage…

So I woke up one day pretty miserable, I made my coffee as usual and I started scrolling through the social media...I was feeling so low...While I was looking at all those “happy people” I felt all my blood rushing on my head.. I felt like my head was going to explode. I said out loud I AM NOT HAPPY...and i just threw my phone at the other side of the room…

I started crying like a baby...feeling hopeless and useless  and just like a flash - I  thought to myself… “What the F* are you doing? This is how you will use your chance to live on this earth?”. That was IT. I have had enough of the “so and so” situations in my life.

So I decided it was time to open the Pandora box. If I didn’t resolve the issues troubling me inside I would never reach true happiness.. I could be a “Tech freak” moving with tremendous speeds within the technology evolvement but.. What did it matter if I was stuck in my life?

So, I started digging in to my inner world. I started doing psychoanalysis, coaching and a loooot of reading… and bit by bit, I started realising how I function as a human being. I must admit that for the first couple of years I had no idea what was going on. At some point I didn’t even know who I truly was. Thank God I still remembered my name though 🙂

In time and by getting rid one by one all the limiting beliefs that were keeping me back, I had quit my job and I was working as a freelance Multimedia Creator and of course the magic of the technology remained very much alive for many years ahead. It was actually the only thing that was keeping my fire alive!

So month after month and year after year I continued educating myself on the inner world of us, humans. I started learning how our body functions, how our brain functions and how our energy functions or better say … flows.

So there I was… a techie moving in extreme speed towards the future fighting to catch up with the technology advancements - With a huge knowledge of our inner world who was calling me to DROP SPEED…TO LIVE IN THE PRESENCE…TO ENJOY THE HERE AND NOW.

But how could I do that? “If I stop, I will stay behind…the progress is so fast that I have to keep up otherwise I will be left behind…”

 I don't know how it exactly happened. I woke up one morning and while I was looking out of my window I felt a refreshing breeze rejuvenating my soul and my body. My heart was filled with flowers and butterflies and my breath felt like it was a God-given gift. I was ready...

I started meditating every day and I tried to remind myself to remain still every now and then during the day…. To breathe… To be more mindful…

The days went by and bit by bit Technology seized to amaze me.

For the first time in my life instead of running after the technology advancements and the creation of a new breath-taking digital world I turned inside…and I had a look at “this” glorious world - The one that lies within me.

I am still a “silent” tech lover, I must admit…and it still amazes me and scares me at the same time…all this automation… All this guidance, we, humans experience through the use of our mobile phones…sometimes it gives me the shivers.

Nowadays anybody can search for his name on Google and probably get his picture come up from his social media accounts.

The fact that our life is so openly exposed through social media for me is very scary…

 

Another thing that really worries me is the loss of our true identity. I now, happen to work with children and sometimes I do feel so sorry for our new generations. They are carrying a curse that our generation created for them. Their digital existence.

Do you know how hard it is for a teenager today to exist in this world? Trying to figure out who you are, have self-esteem and create your own identity – at the same time that you are valued by the number of likes you get on your social media.

 

Around 5 years ago, while I was working with teenager groups at a school in Cyprus one of my students, Eleni, came crying into my arms...It took her five minutes to stop crying and catch her breath again. So when she finally started speaking she had told me that her boyfriend had broken up with her.

He decided that he wanted to be with Victoria  …the pretty girl of the school that had 800 likes on ONE post.

She was crying in my arms because she was not “good enough”. She was not good enough to get so many likes or make the boy that she liked, stay with her…

- She actually said “Why would he want to be with me? Even on Facebook, I get maximum 30 likes on my posts - SHE GETS 800...do YOU UNDERSTAND?” My heart was torn apart...

 

This is something that is unfortunately happening in adulthood too…People are trapped in a false image… they feel so “not enough” by all this exposure of the social and in return… they are closing in, they become unsocial, they talk less and they communicate with emoticons instead of true smiles and tears.

BUT…

Technology advancement, just like anything else on this planet has its positive side as well.  I cannot imagine our world without it now… many things look so much easier today than 20 years ago. Doctors can operate from a distance and people, from all over the world, have come closer than ever before.

The other day I saw a mommy gadget that I desired so badly :)!

I am a mum of two beautiful girls that, thank God, are turning our house upside down every day… So, I saw a video on Facebook of a robot that was tidying up toys, sorting them out in boxes and then cleaning the floor too… Can you imagine? It took me one millisecond to fall in love with it  🙂 🙂

This is just a simple example of how the technological advancement can support the human kind. We do have to admit that, technology can be a true blessing in our life as long as WE decide how to use it. Otherwise it can become a curse for the human kind.

I now take you back to my life story for a minute..

That entire search and studying of the human existence led me to become a Life Coach for Children and Adults, helping them wake up from the lethargy they live in and start realising how powerful we, humans, are.

Now…I LOVE technology! but I found the true meaning of my existence. To live in the present moment. To see the reality as it is. To accept myself just the way I am.

A huge part of humanity is guided blindly by technology having a false perception of the world as it is today and it is now my mission to awaken people. To enable them to see what is actually happening. To appreciate themselves. To appreciate life. To come in contact with nature and to communicate with each other using their voice and not their thumbs.

Otherwise I fear to see the future. Full of depressed people not knowing how to live, accepting nothing for enough.

 

So I am writing this today to ask you with all my love… Never forget that WE ARE THE MANKIND. We own one of the most complicated and magnificent systems…our bodies…Not to talk about our soul.

Maybe we should start thinking differently… Anything that is done in excessive quantities repeatedly is destructing for us…and this applies to everything in life…food, coffee, sex, …anything.

So let’s worship the digital Era in a way that will keep us – the human species – empowered.

Let’s stop moving blinded in this life and use the technology in moderation without being dependent on it and ONLY when it supports us to evolve …

My wish is that we, humans, learn to live more consciously and use technology more consciously …because this will be the only way this digital evolvement will exist as a blessing for our kind.

Divorce. Should I or Shouldn’t I?

Growing up it is strongly embedded in our minds that our purpose as humans is reproduction. Starting from the fairy tales, the woman is always expecting her prince charming to come and rescue her.

A few years ago, I came across the fairy tale “Sleeping beauty” one day. While I was reading through it, I couldn’t help it – I felt like a huge bell was ringing into my head driving me crazy…  What the f*? What are we teaching our kids?  The princess and ALL THE PEOPLE in the Castle were asleep after a spell and they all came back to life after the prince kissed the princess … WOW !!

How many girls are growing up believing that this magical and amazing person will come and bring joy to their life as well as everybody else’s life around them (and what a burden for a man, huh?). We learn that we are incomplete until we find our “other half”.

So, we rush to find another half (any half) so we can be whole. Just as it is expected. We rush to marry, to have children, build a house, buy a car and have a good-safe job.

So why aren’t we happy?

It doesn’t take long to notice if you look around, the misery in many (or should I say most) of the couples today. They have it all – house, car, kids, dog, good job – all ticked in their TODO list but there is something missing. JOY.

Believing that we must become “whole” (whatever that means, as if we are not born perfect) we are forgetting to ask WHAT DO I REALLY WANT IN MY LIFE.

  • Maybe I do not want to get married.
  • Maybe I want to travel the world.
  • Maybe I want to wait until I find the one that will make my soul sing.
  • Maybe – just maybe.

Instead of answering this question, we blindly try to fulfill somebody else’s expectations (parents, society, religion and so on) and then we feel like a huge failure as we have done everything as expected but JOY is nowhere.

I often meet women (and men sometimes) who feel trapped in their marriage. Through our coaching sessions they realise that they were never in love with their “other half” – they just got married because this was the "normal evolvement" of their relationship.

I remember specifically a young lady, around her thirties, that, when asked why they got married she replied

“I thought that after 3 years in a relationship that was the thing to do. I hadn’t even lived with him in the same house before we got married” and as she continued “It didn’t take me long to realise that we were not made for each other but our first kid was on its way”.

What makes me have a “yucky” feeling is the selective blindness of the people around a person who is suffering in their wedding. So many people are in destructing marriage situations but have no one to give them a helping hand to get out of there. The same people that were promoting the marriage (… the wellbeing of the person) are now pretending to be lacking basic senses like seeing and hearing the person in pain. They tell you to be patient, things will “one-day” change or they rationalise by telling you that “this is how weddings are”.

In order to keep the “pretty picture” alive, you are asked to sacrifice your chance to live happily on this earth.

It is very sad to know that so many previous generations took their misery and silenced pain of their marriages to their graves.

I must admit that I see a specific pattern repeating in unhealthy marriages. The person who is less willing to learn and grow (usually the man … sorry guys) is pointing the finger to the other one, blaming them for anything that might "go wrong" with the kids, the house and so on.

Many women in their coaching sessions tell me that they are accused by their husbands that they have emotional issues, just because they ask to be acknowledged and cared for. Pretty sad huh? (In case you are in such a position do not worry – you are not crazy – trust yourself).

And just before I go, I want to mention one last thing. If you are asking

“Will my decision to get a divorce affect negatively my children?”

Let me answer!

Your children are brought to this world to experience joy and celebrate life (just like you)! By staying in a marriage that is making you (and therefore your children) miserable, scared or anxious you are teaching them that their life is worth sacrificing (for any reason).

  • Why not teach them that our life is a precious gift that is worth fighting for?
  • Why not teach them that happiness is what we should go after and not just the creation of a “pretty picture”?
  • Why not teach them that if something is “killing” us we should distance ourselves?

Your children will be fine as long as you take complete responsibility for your decision to get a divorce and have a clear reason to do it … TO PURSUE HAPPINESS. If you are happy, your children will be too.

Of course, I am not suggesting that everybody should get a divorce or never get married, just sharing with you some food for thought here.

After two marriages and two divorces, I still believe strongly in love. I believe that there are “good men” and “good women” that could be happy together as long as they consciously choose each other.

There is no END until you say so. This is your life. It is your only chance to cherish this magnificent gift.

Are you embracing it?

 

 

 

Is your child happy?

What makes a child happy and how do you know if your child is really happy;

All humans on this earth are souls contained in these bodies. We all come in this life to shine and then leave. I will never forget how amazed I was after the birth of my first daughter…I used to hold her in my arms and I could not believe how magnificent her existence was. I used to hear that when they are babies they don’t understand much…but for me it was different.. I used to talk to her like a friend I had for ages and somehow I was getting a response through her eyes in all that I am saying.

I have the honour to work with children, helping them uncover their true self and learn to express their feelings. Whichever age they are I talk to them like they are in my age, I never talk to them like they are something different than me.

They are also souls contained in bodies….just like I am!

So if as a parent the only thing you want for your child is to be truly happy here are the three main things that will help you achieve it:

1.       Be with them don’t do for them

From the second we find out that we are expecting a child we start preparing everything, start dreaming about what we will do for them and as soon as they pop out we start doing things for them. As soon as they show us their true abilities (for example when they walk and talk J ) we start with the expectations….we try to do everything for them, take them to various lessons and activities even at young ages and we try to offer them everything we can so we keep ourselves satisfied that we have done the best as their parents.

What they really need from us though is Us! They want to see us smile, they want us to be calm, they want us to stop and just be with them. They want us to just exist with them and  be truly present.

So you can ask yourself… how often do you stop.. how often do you just exist with your children without rushing here and there…How often are you truly present with them?

And just to make it lighter for you…try to do it as often and for as long as you can…in time you will learn to do it without great effort…Just try it!

2.       Offer your priceless look all the time

When we are anxious, tired or disoriented our look changes…We avoid looking other people in the eyes…and the truth is that most of us are leaving in the future…not the present. We always think of what we have to do next…rarely enjoy the current moment.

This comes in contrast with our children, who they actually live in the moment. They enjoy playing without worrying what will happen next… time is irrelevant (especially in younger ages).

Try to just sit and watch your children while they are playing. With no cellphones, no thoughts and no expectations. Just observe… you will be amazed of how many times they will search for your look. They want to be seen. They want you to appreciate their existence. They want to feel that you are proud of them.

Sometimes when they play or when the achieve something new they turn to us… they search for that look… the look that says “I am so proud, I am so glad you exist in my life”….

The thought that comes to my mind every time I catch them searching for my look is “Oh my God, how would she feel if I didn’t pay attention to her now?”

So I humbly urge you…observe and offer your look to them…this is like magic to their inner wellbeing.

3.       Do not teach

There are some things that we might need to teach our children in order to function in this society but most of the things we teach them come from our incapability to have trust and patience in them…Most of the things in this life they can learn through experience but in a slower pace…

We believe that we have to teach them everything and in this way we will make sure they are safer and more capable to go through life. The truth is that we feel THE NEED to teach them because we will otherwise fail in our mission as parents.

You see, the expectations we have for ourselves and our children are our greatest Limitations in this life…

Most of the kids I work with troubled self-image have parents who are anxious and have many and high expectations of how things SHOULD ΒΕ.

ACCEPT WHAT your child can offer you in this moment and show how much you appreciate their effort and their existence in this world and I guarantee you that your child will thrive.

It is as simple as that!

Summing up! Becoming a parent is all about learning…Uncovering sides of yourselves you never new existed and our children are in reality greater teachers to us than what we are to them.

Our children know better than us how to enjoy life, notice how they are happy by doing simple things! Sometimes they are satisfied by just being with us J

And now ask your self: do WE need to teach them to become like US or do THEY need to teach US how to be like them..?

3 ways to create an amazing relationship with your children!

Jonathan is is driving back home from work. He feels exhausted and even though he adores his family, he feels really overwhelmed that he will have to face his children in a while and they will require from him to play with them. “I just want to lie quietly on the couch and watch TV” he thinks to himself full of quilt and despair.

When he gets home his 7 year old son and 3 year old daughter are rushing to welcome him. “Give me some time to unwind kids and I will come and play with you”. He seats on the couch feeling very heavy not wanting to make any other move. Not long after, his children start playing and shouting around him. He desperately tries to make them stop and five minutes after he starts shouting at them “Enough! you do not respect the fact that I have been working all day long and I am tired...Go play somewhere else. Let me get some rest”. Both children are looking at him with a terrified,sad face. The young girl starts crying and they both run away.

He now sits there feeling incompetent to respond to his role as a father and full of guilt for shouting at them….

He stands up and goes to their room… “Kids...I am really sorry I shouted at you before...How can I make it up to you?”

“We want to play for another hour, we do not want to go to bed now”

“I am sure your mom will not like this at all but..ok, I will talk to her”

After one hour the children are exhausted and it is really past their bedtime… they now get really irritable...They start fighting and whining. After a few minutes of chaos the parents finally manage to put both children in bed…

Both of them are now sitting on the couch feeling so tired. They don’t even want to speak to each other…

“What a day...I am going to sleep” says Jonathan… ]

Being a parent today is very challenging! With so  many responsibilities and high expectations we have very little energy to be able to cope with parenthood. Our children are constantly 100% energy in contrast to us who have drained energy very quickly during the day.

The time we devote to our family is often limited and many times we are guided by guilt when parenting our children.

In fact, 62 percent of full-time working fathers and 48 percent of working mothers report they don’t spend enough time with their children, with the main reason being their work obligations according to a 2017 Pew study.

So how can we create a healthy relationship with our children without having to “bribe” them in to cooperation or punish them afterwards and regret it?

Have in mind that your children cannot understand  that you are tired when you get home from work. They have been expecting to see you all day long. Most of the times parents ask for some time to unwind and then attend to their children but this makes the children feel that they are not worthy of their parents attention so they become agitated and try to earn it by acting out or not cooperating with us.

The first thing one can do is to connect with them! There are a million ways to connect with your children, it depends on your mood! The best two ways are through play and physical bonding like hugging and kissing! If the minute you walk into the house you show interest to their existence, hug and kiss them without rushing or just pay attention to them for a while and be really present while they play, there is a greater chance that they'll give you  the time you need to unwind and they will surely be more cooperative.

So here are the three things that will help you create an amazing relationship with your children:

  1. Do not rush home or take some time to do your own thing.
    Even Though our time is limited, 10 minutes on your own after work is enough to refocus. Take some deep breaths, “flush” all thoughts from your mind for as long as you can and Just be. You can do this in the car if you find difficulty finding another place.

It is vital, as a parent, to do activities that satisfy your needs as a person. By that I mean anything that can give you pleasure and joy like going to the gym or have a hobby. In this way you will not feel trapped in parenthood.

Elena, a successful chartered accountant, admits: “Since I started going to the gym and attending to acting lessons, which has always been my passion”, I feel more energetic and I enjoy the time with my children more than before. Now I know that I have some time to do my own thing and this makes me feel more alive and happy”

 

  1. Change your mindset. Do not expect your children to understand you.
    As a parent I have felt a million times the need to be understood by my children, especially when I am really tired or frustrated. The more I concentrate on that expectation though the more I get frustrated as most of the times are incapable to “walk into my shoes”. Thy never experienced what I am experiencing at that time...So how would they know how I feel.
    An attitude of “I am tired, just leave me alone” will just make them feel rejected, unimportant and will push them away from you. Be empathetic. One of the greatest needs of humans is to be appreciated. A person might struggle for all of his life to prove that he is worthy, especially to their parents.They are in NEED to be seen by you, to feel important, to feel that you are happy to see them. So concentrate on their need first and then try to nurture yourself too.

Seeing every situation through their eyes and try to be empathetic and supportive to your children is the core of a healthy and strong relationship.

 

  1. Create routines and have cooperation with your spouse.

Children love to know what is going to happen next. Having morning and night routines gives your children a sense of safety and saves you from many useless battles for everyday stuff. When we say routine, we mean a series of steps that we follow consistently every day.

Here is an example of a Night Routine: Have dinner around 7, play until 8 and then bath and pijamas follow! After that children must remain in their bedroom until they sleep. You can read stories, sing lullabies and then it’s sleep time.

It is best to create the routines with your children's cooperation! Let them say which quiet activities they prefer to include in their routine! You can even draw together and color the steps of the routine and hang it on the bedrooms wall!!!

When you stick to your routines your children will be more cooperative as repetition makes the routine a habit for them. So you will have less struggle to switch from one task to the other. When you do not have any routines the time is unstructured and most of the times the schedule is created by the kids which is really frustrating for the parents.

Jonathan, from the previous story not only “broke” the routine but he also was opposite to their mothers limit to go to bed at that time. When a parent ignores the limits of their spouse a huge confusion is created in the children's minds. They do not know what is wrong and what is right and they also learn that when one parent doesn’t grant their wish they will turn to the other one.

In order to have cooperation in the family we must have a few house rules that we all agree and follow all the time. Otherwise we will often have arguments and power struggles with our children as well as our spouse.

 

As with all relationships, if you want to have strong bonds, you must focus more on what the other person feels and experiences and what YOU can offer them without waiting for anything in return.

Our children are just the same as us, just in a smaller body. When we treat them with respect to their needs, whilst covering our own needs, our relationship will always be healthy and strong!

We've all been there. There is nothing more fulfilling than looking into your children's eyes and see love coming towards you. No fear. No grievance.

Our children always strive to make us proud and they want to feel that we are happy to have them in our lives, not a burden for us or being another thing on our busy schedule.

So if you grab every chance to show them that you appreciate their existence you