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Lose Your Patience, Not Your anger

So when was the last time you lost your patience with your children? To answer that, would you be looking at your calendar or the second hand on your watch?

The problem with having children is that by the time you’ve learned everything you need to know to raise them, they’re almost grown. By the time you’re wise enough, you’re too tired. One thing I have to say about having children is that it makes you appreciate your own parents.

A frequent source of conflict between children and parents is that they do not think alike, much to the consternation of parents. For instance, I like putting things back where they belong so I can find them the next time I need them. My children don’t seem to have this same tendency. When things get out of place, I can easily get out of sorts. But after much trial and error, I realized that it’s not worth raising your blood pressure over a $40.00 power tool. Nor is it worth damaging the self esteem of your children (now that’s an overused word I bet you’ve heard before)! One way to abate the anger you feel from having your personal possessions and tools strewn out all over the lawn is to remember that it’s probably divine retribution going back to when you were a child and did the very same things to your parents!

In all honesty, losing your temper is easy. Some people seem to lose it a lot more than others. Incidentally, why is it that those who lose their temper the most always seem to find it again? Maybe it should’ve stayed lost!

Actually, losing your temper is the most counterproductive thing you can do as a parent. It’s admitting to your children that you’re not in control. But in any dispute between emotion and common sense, it seems that emotion almost always wins out. Maybe your best bet is to try another approach when things start to get tense before you vent your anger. It’s easier to maintain control of your temper than to wait until it’s unleashed and try to reign it back in. Once you’ve gone past the point of no return, it’s sort of like jumping off a house and trying to stop halfway. Too late!

Dealing with children isn’t supposed to be easy. In case you thought otherwise, your children will subtly remind you over and over again! There will be times that you won’t always know the best thing to do, especially when it comes to the issue of discipline. Unfortunately, children don’t come with instructions–if they did, you wouldn’t have time to read them anyway! Children, however, need some direction from you as a parent. And instruction. And because of time constraints, sometimes parents will skip over the instruction that children need and go straight to the punishment phase.

Regrettably, discipline is a part of every child’s upbringing, regardless of how you feel about it. No parent relishes the thought of having to discipline their children so we generally procrastinate doing so until we’re about to lose control. And that’s precisely when we need it the most. So, in order to act in their best interest, it requires that you remain in control of your emotions. Don’t be ashamed if you need time to cool off or to get help.

Now I don’t claim to be an authority when it comes to raising children but I’ve learned a few things from my own personal experiences–or did I really mean to say, tribulations. From my observations, it would appear that raising children is synonymous with raising your voice. Fortunately there is always help available, if you’ll just buy the latest book some expert wrote! Now, I’m not against ‘experts’ but have you ever noticed that they don’t always agree? Maybe they should all get together and read each other’s books? This way you’d only have to read one. I believe in consulting books and getting information but it always has to be in the context of common sense. After all, who really knows you’re child better than you?

Relating experiences about childraising doesn’t necessarily have to described in technical terms nor does it require a string of degrees to understand. In fact, the last time I checked, they don’t even give out a certificate for cleaning the bathroom floor after a sick child threw up at 3:00 A.M. in the morning. Not even when you had to be at work at 6:30 the same day. If they do, then I want mine! No, I didn’t get a diploma to hang on my wall nor did I get to walk across a stage with one of those square hats and a tassel.

In our primordial state, we balanced our feelings of frustration or anger by striking out in retribution against whatever caused it. But in the family situation there is no foe to vanquish. So against our invisible feelings of frustration, we sometimes subconsciously designate someone visible to be the foe. When this happens, we feel vindicated by subjecting our children or our spouse to being the object of our anger. This type of reaction only exacerbates a situation where others are depending on you to react in a mature manner.

In summary, you should correct your children because they need it, not because you’re angry or lost your patience. Instead of lashing out in frustration against your spouse, seek their support. In the arena of conflict and resolution, there is no foe unless you create one. But there is one consolation. Eventually you will get even with your children. Because one day they will have children of their own. And it will be their turn to appreciate you.

write about children, wives, financial affairs, relationships, etc.

Don’t know anything about raising children? Your children will teach you! The only problem is that by the time you’ve learned all you need to know, the kids are grown.

Losing your temper is the most counterproductive thing you can do as a parent

sometimes parents will skip over the instruction that children need and go straight to the punishment phase

No parent relishes the thought of having to discipline their children so we generally procrastinate doing so until we’re about to lose control. And that’s precisely when we need it the most.

Raising children shouldn’t be synonymous with raising your voice. In the arena of conflict and resolutionFree Articles, there is no foe unless you create one.

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Be Good To Your Health

Are your working to much? You could be one of 50 million Americans taking work related health risks.

This is especially true for solo entrepreneurs, who must wear many hats.

Friends say you look great! And you feel like superman. But how healthy are you really?

Hidden risks such as high blood pressure, heart attacks, and prostrate cancer can occur without warnings.

Research reports state; “those who feel health will most likely NOT get regular doctor checkups.”

Your health is akin to your car, neglect oil changes or tune ups and you`re hitch hiking.

Self-health maintenance of bodyArticle Search, mind and spirit are all wellness advantages.

So plan that much-needed vacation. You deserve a break today.

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Help Your Children to Love Reading

It is so important to create an environment that promotes the love of reading. Not only is reading necessary for survival in today’s world, it is educational, it sparks imagination, it is a stress reliever, provides entertainment and enjoyment, the list goes on.

Here are some ideas to help you help your child love reading.

The most important thing a parent can do to teach a child to love reading is for the parent to let the children see how much you love reading. You need to set the example.

Set aside a time each day when everyone in the family reads. Perhaps it is for half an hour after school or before bed every day. Be consistent.

Read to your children. Even after they are old enough to read themselves, it is still a treat to have a parent read to them.

Never punish your child by taking away books.

Share books you loved growing up.

Create a tradition of reading one chapter from a book each night before bed. I remember a teacher in the fifth grade would read a chapter each day from “Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh” by Zena Bernstein (Illustrator) and Robert C. O’Brien (Author). I looked forward to class every day so I could find out what happened next!

Start a family book club. Everyone reads the same book and pick a night to discuss it. I suggest checking out copies from the library, I wouldn’t want to buy several copies of the same book. Or you can take turns reading from the same book.

Every child should have a reading nook in his or her bedroom. A simple beanbag chair or other cozy chair, a small table with a reading lamp and a small bookcase are all that is needed. If space is especially limited, just a comfy chair and reading lamp will suffice.

Creating a calming, relaxing space in your child’s room is also important. There should be no television or video games in the bedroom. The room should also be neat and not have a lot of stuff. Studies show simplicity and neatness are calming where a lot of stuff or messiness can clutter the mind.

If your children are small, perhaps the reading nook should be either in a common room or the parent and child should each have a chair in the child’s room.

Let your child choose his or her own books. Don’t limit the reading material (within reason) they choose. If s/he wants to read educational books, comic books or music magazines, let him/her. The goal is to let your child love reading.

If all your child wants to read is magazines or other reading material you consider not great, then perhaps you can find something your child is very interested in and find books on that subject. If your son is only interested in reading music magazines, perhaps you can buy books such as a biography on one of his favorite musicians, books on musical history, books that teach how to play music, etc.

I hope you find some useful ideas. Remember, the family that reads together, stays together. Have fun!

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Instant Relaxation Anytime Anywhere

If there was a way of relaxing quickly and easily in any situation would you want to know what it is?

Ancient cultures knew this secret, and followers of Hawaiian Huna used it to access altered states. In more recent times martial artists used it as a way to develop relaxed alertness, and today photo-readers use it to relax before reading books at speeds of 25,000 words per minute.

What is the secret? It has to do with how you use your eyes!

Pick a spot on the wall straight ahead and a little above eye level. Now continue to look at that spot with soft focus and after a few moments you will notice that the room seems to become fuzzy as you develop tunnel vision. This tunnel vision goes hand in hand with the worry, stress and anxiety you feel when you get fixated on getting what you want when you are under pressure.

If only you could snap out of that tunnel vision when it clouds your judgment then you could be more relaxed when you choose to be. You can in a moment if you know how to access your peripheral vision.

How to access your peripheral vision:

  1. Pick a spot on the wall in front of you, slightly above eye level.

  2. Extend your field of vision, little by little, to take in more of what you can see to the left and right. Continue like this until you are aware of what you can see out of the corner of your eyes on either side.

  3. Let your awareness go even further. Use your sense of space to guide you all the way around behind you through 360 degrees.

When you stay in peripheral vision for a few minutes, you will notice that your breathing tends to slow down and even become deeper; the muscles of your face may have relaxed; and even the rest of your body may feel heavier and more relaxed.

When you use your peripheral vision your nervous system seems to automatically calm your body, mind and emotions.

4 Return to normal everyday awareness by letting your vision return to normal.

When you are speaking to a group or even to a large audience, accessing your peripheral vision is a valuable skill. It will let you relax immediately while also allowing you to see your entire audience and any small movements, consequently you can be more aware of reactions to your message.

Which do you prefer, tunnel vision with stress or peripheral vision with relaxation? The choice is yours. To have a choice when it matters you need to practice accessing your peripheral vision at will. Then the next time you feel anxious, scared or tense in front of other people you will be able to quickly and easily access your natural state of relaxation.

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Preventing Obesity in Young Children

Do you have a young child whose weight or eating habits are out of control? Need some real world help with ‘taming the cookie monster’? Here are some things that worked for our family.

Our daughter, now 14 years old, was plump from birth and thrived happily for her first year on a combination of breast milk and formula. When she was completely weaned and eating only solid foods, however, she began to gain a great deal of weight at an unhealthy rate. This continued for the next year until, on the advice of her pediatrician, we began to modify our daughter’s eating habits. She was barely two years old, but her doctor felt strongly that we should make some changes before her weight became a lifelong problem. The goal was to prevent further weight gain until her height could catch up with her weight, without depriving her of nutrition or having her feel deprived of the comforting aspects of food.

I’m happy to report that our daughter is now a slender, healthy teenager with good eating habits and no ‘food issues’, but learning how to modify our family’s eating behavior was a long trial and error process. Because she was still mostly pre-verbal, discussing nutrition or reasoning with our toddler was not an option. We kept trying new things and learned over time what worked for her. (These tips should prove useful with older children as well but are NOT meant to replace professional advice: Be sure to talk to your pediatrician before changing or restricting your child’s diet.)

Here are some important lessons we learned:

  • Enlist the cooperation of ALL family members and caregivers.

  • Chart your progress over time.

  • Eat what your child eats

  • Get creative in dealing with your child’s individual needs.

  • Don’t starve your child!

  • Be patient and expect resistance and setbacks

Enlist the Cooperation of ALL Family Members and Caregivers.

The first step is to explain thoroughly to grandparents, daycare providers etc., your concerns and those of your pediatrician’s, pointing out that overweight children move more slowly, get less exercise and therefore develop less body confidence, often have social difficulties in school, and frequently become overweight adults.

Reassure them that you will follow good nutritional practices, that your child is under the care of a competent pediatrician, and that you will take special care to fill her psychological need for food in more appropriate ways.

Explain your goals for your child’s weight (e.g. zero weight gain until weight catches up with height), and tell staff your child should not be praised OR punished where food is concerned, only encouraged to eat slowly and move on to another activity when a reasonable-sized meal has been eaten.

Chart Your Progress over Time

Once a month weigh your child and measure her height, being careful not to express displeasure if her weight has increased. Instead, praise her, saying ‘how proud you are of the ways she is growing’. Get a copy of your child’s growth chart (weight-for-height) from her doctor, and keep it updated monthly. This gives important feedback regarding whether your methods are working, and you can adjust meals, activity levels, etc. accordingly. Never scold your child for overeating or being heavy: Our daughter went through the chubbiest part of her childhood completely unaware that she was in any way ‘different’, and eventually succeeded in achieving a healthy weight.

Eat What Your Child Eats

This requires commitment and discipline! You will only make things much, much worse if you single out a child to eat differently than the rest of the family. The whole family should be working toward healthy life-long eating habits and it’s your job as parents to make sure this happens. I do know it’s HARD to not order pizza when you are too tired to cook, but make it a once a month treat instead of a mainstay meal.

Do the obvious things to cut down on fat in your diet, including switching to skim milk, eliminating butter, cutting back on cheese and fried foods, and cutting out desserts altogether. Snack only on fresh veggies or fruit, and an occasional Popsicle treat (no fat!). Serve water as a beverage with dinner, (think of milk as a food rather than a beverage) and allow unlimited quantities of steamed or raw veggies (no butter, no ‘dip’). You as parents should decide how much ‘main course’ of a meal your family should have. Serve the heavier foods directly onto plates from the stove rather than bringing piles of food to the table, so there is less temptation to have seconds. Make sure portions are generous enough to satisfy true hunger, but not excessively large.

If seconds are requested, ask your child to wait a few minutes to ‘let her food settle’, or until everyone else has finished, and then give her a smaller second portion, and no third portions for anyone unless it’s a low-fat Item. Do the same yourself, and save any ‘Ben and Jerry’s’ binges for after your kid’s bedtimes.

Get Creative in Dealing with Your Child’s Individual Needs

Sometimes waiting a few minutes in between servings did the trick and our daughter realized she was full before gobbling up a whole second helping, but she would often feel torn about leaving any food on her plate, and stuff herself to the point of a tummy ache just to finish what she started. (This happened even though we NEVER insisted she ‘clean her plate’, a misguided and outdated parenting policy!).

To help her ‘let go’ of a meal we promised that we would ‘save it for her’ in the refrigerator, and then wrap it in plastic and let her see us put it away. This really seemed to do the trick: She got to remain ‘in charge’ of ‘her’ food, but didn’t have to feel any sense of loss if it went uneaten.

We did the same kind of thing with candy, too. (People love to give chubby kids candy!). We had a ‘candy jar’ on top of the fridge, where we put any gifts of hard candy she received (we weeded out the chocolate after she went to bed). After dinner, to help her know that ‘eating time’ was finished, she was allowed to choose one piece of hard candy for dessert. This solved the in-between- meal whining for candy issue as well as gave an endpoint to the meal without serving a heavy dessert.

If your child has some quirks around food (and don’t we all?) think hard about what need the food may be filling, and try to meet that need more appropriately. Common needs are Control, Boredom, Anxiety, Anger, and Loneliness. Get creative and keep trying new things. The consistent message you should be sending is that her needs are important and you will help fill them, without using food as a substitute. Your child should always feel that she will get enough to eat when she is hungry, and if you don’t keep junk food in the house, she will learn to eat healthy food to feel full.

Don’t Starve Your Child!

It seems obvious but it’s worth mentioning. Even the chubbiest kids get hungry and need to eat to keep up their energy levels. Regularly scheduled low-fat between-meal mini-snacks can help with this. The worst thing you can do (in my opinion) is make such an issue out of food that it becomes an unpleasant weapon of control. Your child should always feel in charge of her eating, and your job is to help her learn the best possible eating habits.

When you child does ask for food always offer something from the ‘unlimited’ list: a steamed or raw veggie, or occasionally some fruit, unless it’s obviously NOT an appropriate time for snack (just before bedtime, or moments before a meal is served).

Consistently attempt to replace your child’s need for comfort food with some activity that she enjoys: Say “Let’s read that new library book together first!”, and offer a snack AFTER the activity. In this way you can gradually learn to tell when your child is actually hungry and when she has some other need, such as feeling tired, bored, scared, sad, or just wanting some attention. Gradually she’ll learn to tell the difference, too, and slowly stop using food as her first ‘fill the need’ strategy.

By consistently offering only healthy food in reasonable quantities, with ‘seconds’ allowed of the heavier foods, and some ‘unlimited’ foods always available, your child will retain a great deal of control. She will get to decide how much ‘unlimited’ food to eat, and won’t constantly hear ‘NO’ when asking for more. (“You’ve already had seconds on the chili, honey, but you can have more carrots if you want”).

Allowing a snack when requested eliminates the chance of anxiety developing over NOT getting something to eat when your child actually IS hungry. By stalling the snack for a few minutes to read with your child or play a game, you send a message that food will always be available, but it’s really not an urgent problem, and in the mean time there may be a better way to comfort herself.

Be Patient and Expect Resistance and Setbacks

Changing family eating habits can be difficult, especially when food has been used as a source of family comfort or entertainment (and it occasionally is, even in the most ‘perfect’ of families!). Expect your overweight child and other family members to resist changes in eating habits, especially older children who have had longer to become entrenched in the junk food life. Keep firm in your knowledge that you are doing your best for your family, and even if it doesn’t always go smoothly you will KEEP TRYING. Don’t become discouraged or feel like a failure when your child gains weight or begins ‘sneaking food’. This isn’t a reflection on your worth as a parent, but instead shows how difficult this problem can be. If a family crisis or change in routine (i.e. vacation) throws you back into bad habits, start again. This is a PROCESS and is the best gift you can give your child.

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