Saying ‘no’ frees up to say ‘yes’

As parents we tend to place huge expectations on ourselves.  We want to ‘get it right’, be all things to our children and pile our plate high. We say yes, to doing this, going here, making this, perfecting that, and then the yeses lose their joy.  We’re investing energy we don’t have into things we feel obliged or pressured to do. We may not even want to do something but are more afraid of not doing it. We evaluate yes with caring, and no with being ‘lazy’ or uncaring.  But it’s just not true. We need to drop this story we carry around no, and allow ourselves to make our plates more manageable (and palatable).

Connecting with - filling their emotional fuel tank

It is easy to think that any and all time spent with our children counts as together time.  We are physically with them after all. However, we can be in the same space as our children and not actually be with them.  Our mind could be wandering miles away, our backs turned, or be totally engaged in our own activity and totally unaware of theirs.  This is reality of course, and fine, and understandable, but we have to see this time for what it is. And not mistake it for real together time, the ‘tank filling’ sort.

Connection - it takes time

The relationship we have with our child depends on the connection we have. Consciously choosing more times of connection means we make this a priority in our lives.  We may need to put guidelines in place for ourselves – turning off cellphones at specific times, changing the time of day we prep dinner, making important phone calls only after some invested presence.