Happy parents raise happy kids

Make a list: Beliefs about Kids cont.

Family walking on the beachLast week, I wrote about writing your beliefs about kids. As I said, beliefs are a reflection of our parenting style. What we believe about kids becomes our reality. I realized this during my Special Education studies and I started making sure I always had the right beliefs, the most empowering beliefs that will make me the best mother in the world. And they have!

I examined all my beliefs and found out I had many I had received from my parents, my older sister, my teachers and other adults in my life that were very limiting, such as "Kids are cruel", "Kids have no respect", "Kids must be disciplined" and I will stop writing this list, because I would like to focus on beliefs that are better for parents to have.

So here I am opening my heart and telling you 100 of my beliefs about kids. I only write the beliefs that are empowering to me and that have made my parenting happier, healthier and more successful. I hope you will find inspiration in them and learn about the philosophy and vision I have for my parenting and for the Family Matters blog.

Ronit's 100 empowering beliefs about kids

  1. I brought my kids into the world to learn to love myself better.
  2. My kids are my best creations.
  3. My older daughter is my happy thought. Just like the older Peter Pan in the movie Hook who had to think of a happy thought to fly, I think of Eden.
  4. My son, who was born after I had lost two kids, brought back the smile into my life and made all my efforts worthwhile.
  5. Every success of my kids is also my success.
  6. Babies are gorgeous. They are easy to raise and the challenges of raising them are nothing compared to having them in my life. Just thinking about them helps me overcome many challenges in my life.
  7. When I am upset with my kids, I imagine them as babies and my anger dissolves.
  8. Babies sleep well. It takes them 2-3 months to start sleeping the whole night. Proof: this has happened with all three of my kids.
  9. Baby girlBabies love eating like grownups. As soon as they can sit, they can join family meals.
  10. When babies eat, there is a mess regardless of when they start, so it is best to start early!
  11. Breastfeeding babies is the healthiest option. However, a frustrated breastfeeding mom is worse for the baby than getting a bottle. It is OK to rest long enough to be positive to keep the emotional bond between mother and baby.
  12. Big breastfed babies are perfectly fine. Babies' job is to grow. NO diets for babies.
  13. Seven months of breastfeeding is enough for me. I want my body back after that.
  14. Babies should sleep in their own rooms. During their first 2-3 months, having them next to my bed (not in it) makes breastfeeding easier, but after that they need to build their confidence in the world.
  15. Babies and kids can sleep in mom and dad's bed early in the morning or when they are sick.
  16. When babies cry, they are talking, so it is good to talk back.
  17. From the age of 1, babies should be around other babies to start socializing.
  18. Kids remember everything, so tell them stories, take them on trips and expose them to adventures. Even when they do not know they know, their brain records everything.
  19. Kids are like mirrors. When I do not like what they do, I had better ask, "When does one of the grownups they imitate behave like this?"
  20. I always wanted to have a kid from each gender. I think it helps experience life from both worlds. I am lucky!
  21. The eldest can be either a boy or a girl. We love them regardless. I come from a culture that thinks the eldest child must be a boy, so I had to get over this. I think my mom had to get over this even more than I did.
  22. Pregnancies are a healthy time in every woman's life.
  23. Funny girlWhen I am pregnant, I prefer to know the gender of my baby before birth.
  24. I think we live in a very stereotypical world of boys wearing blue and girls wearing pink. I like to rebel and most of my daughters' clothes were blue. Actually, Eden still prefers blue and green today.
  25. I encouraged my son to play with dolls just as I did with the girls. Symbolic games are important for kids to sort out their emotional challenges and playing Mommy and Daddy with dolls is important for boys and girls alike.
  26. As a parent, my role is to expose my kids (boys and girls) to different sporting activities and allow them to choose any activity they like.
  27. As a parent, my role is to expose my kids (boys and girls) to different forms of music and allow them to choose any activity and style they like.
  28. As a parent, my role is to expose my kids (boys and girls) to different arts and allow them to choose any activity they like.
  29. My kids go to school for the social interaction and personal development. The rest is secondary.
  30. School is a wonderful environment to teach kids social skills. The best mother in the world cannot teach her kids social skills at home.
  31. If my son wants to wear his hair long, that is cool! I admire him for having the courage to be himself and go against the norm, as long as he keeps it clean. Tsoof has grown his hair long 3 times already.
  32. I expect my kids to do well academically. I also believe this to be the main reason they do so well.
  33. I am ultimately responsible for giving my kids the knowledge I think they need. If school teaches them that knowledge, great, but it is still my responsibility to make sure they get it. If school does not teach it, I must find another way as their parent.
  34. Homework is a must. All other activities come after homework. If you need any help, ask. Doing homework and handing it in on time is a basic requirement. It is OK not to understand everything, but on my kids' report cards, "A" for Homework is the only option.
  35. I learn a lot from my kids. Many times, their innocent point of view on life can wake me up to being trapped in a stereotypical adult point of view. I like being around kids because of this.
  36. School holidays are the best times. I tick off the days and look forward to every school holiday. We have the best fun on school holidays.
  37. Kids are born with senses to read the people around them. No point pretending next to them, as they will be able to tell when something is wrong. If I want to help my kids, I must take care of myself.
  38. Girl with painted faceIt is not a good idea to compare my kids with myself at their age, because I grew up in a different era.
  39. If kids do not understand something, it is always because the grown up has not found a good way to explain it yet.
  40. My kids can go to sleep over from the first time they ask to go. Age has nothing to do with maturity to sleep over. My kids had sleepovers at their grandparents' house at 10 months old and at friends' houses at 3 years old.
  41. It is better to have a small group of close friends than a large circle of casual friends. Often, it is good to know many people, but my energy is better spent on my deep and meaningful relationships, because they also fill me up emotionally.
  42. Kids can have 2 parties a year, one for birthday and one for no reason at all.
  43. I do not have to be good friends with my kids' good friends, but it helps.
  44. Kids whose parents help at school are in a better position than kids whose parents never come to school.
  45. Teachers are people and having a good relationship with your kids' teacher improves your kids' academic and emotional performance.
  46. Teachers who share my philosophy on education are better for my kids and I should always ensure my kids such teachers.
  47. Grades are for the teachers to find out how well they have taught the kids. They are not for the kids to rate themselves. If anything, I look at teachers' comments on my kids' report cards and I always help my kids interpret them in context.
  48. Creativity is an important skill I would like my kids to learn at school and I do not think they do it enough. This is why I teach it at home.
  49. Funny girlsUniforms are the invention of control freaks and destroy kids' feeling of uniqueness and ability to express themselves.
  50. If my kids' school has a uniform code, they must follow it! A school's uniform policy is an important part of its overall educational philosophy. If the uniform code contradicts my beliefs, this school is not suitable for my kids. Pretending to get over it just because I think the school has a good program will catch up to me later.
  51. I would rather send my kids to public schools and use the money I save to give my kids the extra things I think school can never give them. Having said that, I have gone to great lengths to choose the best public schools for my kids.
  52. Academic achievement is a side effect of strong emotional intelligence. When my kids have challenges with their academic achievements, I need to find ways to strengthen their emotional state.
  53. Working while studying is good, but studying requires lots of energy and when kids are busy with hobbies and fun and doing well at school, I would not encourage working, or at least I would limit it. Kids' ability to learn is the highest it will ever be in their life, but they can always work later.
  54. No one gets rewards for good grades. The knowledge and the self pride are the reward.
  55. It is easy to make kids happy. It only takes a balloon, a good word, food they like, eating out or a phone call. If I know what makes each of my kids happy, it is easy for me to fill their happiness tank to the brim.
  56. Dinner with my kids is a precious time. It is our chance to spend quality time together and bond.
  57. It is best to have kids at least five years apart. This did not work for me quite the way I had planned, so I ended up having my kids about 6 years apart, but it has been excellent. There is no jealousy between siblings who are different from each other. It is as if each one of my kids was born to a totally different family.
  58. In a family, we share everything we can - kids and parents, clothes or food. The only thing we do not share is underwear and toothbrushes. OK, I do not share my glasses with the kids either… There is no "mine", although we give the owner first rights.
  59. When kids fight, if they are not in any danger, let them sort things out by themselves. If I interfere, I facilitate the conflict and I am not a judge. Plus when they leave home, what will they do without me?
  60. Older kids do not have to give up to younger siblings just because they are the young. Everyone has rights and the little ones should respect them too. Disappointment is part of life.
  61. Older kids set the example for the younger ones. Being older has some privileges, but also some responsibilities. I expect my kids to consider the way their behavior affects their younger siblings.
  62. When my kid is upset and says, "I hate you", I answer, "I love you too". This is just their way of saying, "I am upset" and knowing I love them always helps.
  63. Even if I think my kids know I love them, I say it every day, just to be sure.
  64. My role as a parent is to give my kids hugs and kisses as many as the days of their lives. I will take care of the years they are with me and give some extra hugs and kisses, but their task is to find someone who will hug and kiss them for the rest of their life.
  65. Family at the beachWhen kids are sick, drinking lots of water is the first cure, Vitamin C is the second, sleep is the third, meditation is the forth and Reiki is a bonus (because it requires another person). If these do not work for 3 days, I need to go to the doctor. So far, my kids have rarely been to the doctor.
  66. Going to sleep with wet hair is fun.
  67. Fresh air and fun are great cures for feeling sick.
  68. Eating healthy food can greatly help with any sickness.
  69. Kids eat whatever you give them. They may prefer some things to others, but with the right education and attitude, I can encourage them to eat anything. Picky parents raise picky kids. Exposing my kids to different kinds of food at an early age and showing them how flexible I am with food will help greatly in making them good eaters.
  70. Kids do not need to know every detail of your personal life. Relationship issues, work power struggles, community politics, financial difficulties and even financial victories are not kid material. Kids are too young to understand how to use this information.
  71. Kids need to have a broader family. A loving mom and dad are not enough to fill their love tank.
  72. Kids and parents are not equal and a family is not a democracy because of it. In many cases, I set the rules and the kids must follow them and that is that.
  73. Teen years are a grownup invention. Everybody at every age has problems. Nothing major happens during the teen years, only good kids trying to fight a bad image they have done nothing to earn.
  74. Teens kissing and hugging each other at school is a wonderful way for them to feel connected and to give and receive physical touch in a healthy way. I encourage it.
  75. Every kid must feel special in some way. If I help my kids find their uniqueness at an early stage of their life, they will blossom. If I fail to do this, they will do everything (yes, I mean everything) to gain this feeling, even by hurting themselves.
  76. Every kid must feel loved. It is my duty to fill my kids' love tank and teach them to fill it themselves, because if I do not, they will compromise a lot to gain love (just like adults do).
  77. Kids Consistency is comfort for kids. I aim to be very clear about my parenting ideology. It is OK to change my mind, but it is good to be clear about that too.
  78. The Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus are parents' greatest friends. I love them and I keep them alive as much as I can. Every year they exist for my kids, I am proud of myself.
  79. Each of my kids has a special communication style. I need to try to communicate with each of them in the appropriate style and not in my style only.
  80. When kids are hungry, they can't think properly. When they are edgy around meal time, anything I say is wasted, so I focus on feeding them.
  81. My kids are perfect just the way they are. Even when something does not happen as I expect, they are still perfect.
  82. Running around and playing is essential to kids' development. I encourage my kids to run around and play.
  83. It is part of my job description to make sure my kids know that whatever happens to them, no matter how silly they have been, no matter what danger they are in, I will come for them and will be their loving mother.
  84. My kids' friends are always welcome at our house. Every kid can invite friends, they just have to check with the family plan first.
  85. Books are an essential part of kids' life. When I motivate my kids to read a lot, I give them a very important tool to navigate their life and inspire them to love new information (most of the information is presented to us through reading anyway).
  86. TV is not healthy for kids (or grownups, for that matter), because kids do not have strong filters.
  87. Pocket money can be given to kids from the second they can count to 10 (my kids could count to 10 when they were 2 years old). Pocket money is not money I tell the kids how to use. It is theirs. Pocket money needs to be used, not only saved for some unknown purpose.
  88. Having a boyfriend or girlfriend is healthy for kids at any age and it is not a distraction but a boost to their self esteem and emotional intelligence.
  89. Kids do not need mobile phones unless they are on the road.
  90. Using ear pieces (headphones) in the car or when there are other people around is anti social. They are only to be used when kids are by themselves.
  91. Driving with kids is wonderful and a great time for family bonding. Driving long hours with my kids (1, 7 and 13 years old) for 6 weeks around Australia was so much fun, I would do it all over again.
  92. Family trip It is OK to say "I am tired today", "I am sad today" or "I need help" to my kids. It only shows them I am human.
  93. As long as kids go to school, sleeping time is important. I do as much as I can to plan life around my kids' sleep time. At any age, if a kid wants to start going to bed later, he or she must be able to wake up easily in the morning.
  94. At every meal, everyone must eat the vegetable salad.
  95. Young kids will never starve themselves. When kids do not eat, they may be sick. Make sure they are not eating junk in-between meals and everything will be OK.
  96. After every dinner, we all clear the table together. This is an opportunity to extend the family bonding time.
  97. Dinners are a great time to work on the kids' personal development.
  98. Parenting is the business of manipulating our kids to think they are wonderful, talented, pretty, successful, happy, healthy and wealthy. We have a lot of power over our kids' thoughts, whether we like it or not. I think it is better to use this power wisely.
  99. Kids are a great help in time of need. When things get tough, they will do everything to help if you just talk to them honestly (no need to get into too much detail).
  100. Happy parents raise happy kids.

There you have it, only some of my beliefs about kids.

For each of them, I can tell you a story that has made me think like that - an event in my life or a learning that has helped me develop each of those beliefs.

I tell all the parents at my workshops I have wonderful kids because I believe I have wonderful kids. Obviously, my kids behave in such a wonderful way it makes me strengthen my belief that they are wonderful…

Can you see the cycle? It is a great cycle to be in when you are a parent. If you wish to be in that cycle too, make your own list of 100 things you think about kids and change the limiting beliefs to empowering beliefs. Your success in parenting is directly linked to your beliefs.

Happy and positive beliefs about kids will guarantee a happy, smooth, wonderful and rewarding parenting.

Join me next week for the list of 100 events that have shaped your life.

Happy list making,
Ronit

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Ronit Baras

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