Happy parents raise happy kids

Posts Tagged ‘happiness’

Good Relationship with Loving Affirmations

Holding hand - the sign of a good relationship

Relationships and the way we connect with others are very important and essential to our happiness and success in life. Research shows that people who are in good relationships are healthier, happier and they live longer. So, good relationships are the best prescription for a long life. I would take two prescriptions of that kind of medication.

We learn about relationships from the people closest to us – usually, our parents, later on our siblings and much later, from friends. If they model good relationships, we copy them. If the model bad relationships, we model that as well. Why? Because as kids we don’t have any way of filtering bad examples. It is only as we grow that we start developing critical thinking, and we start noticing that relationships at our house are different to other houses. Often times, that can make us frustrated because we don’t have the skills to make things change.

I once worked with a woman who was 37 years old. She had so many partners and no stable relationships. We checked her beliefs and found the source of the problem. We discovered that the origin of it was from her dad leaving her mom and her siblings when she was about 10 years old. He left to be with another women and she adopted a belief that “all man are assholes” (I am quoting). As a result, she did not trust men. With a belief like that, it is hard and even impossible to find a relationship, not to mention keep it.

This post is part 4 of 4 in the series Affirmations

Happy Affirmations: Happy Beliefs

Affirmations: hope, faith, peace, love, believe - a good recipe for healing the soul

I have written a lot about affirmations in this blog, mainly because I believe they are very important for our health and wellbeing. You can sit down with a person for 10 minutes and tell if his/she is a happy, successful, healthy person by the sentences they repeatedly say.

Do you know why? Because those things they repeatedly say are part of their beliefs about themselves and the world around them. The way we experience the world depends a lot on how we tune our minds.

Let me give you a good metaphor. Think of the beliefs in your head as colored glasses. If you put pink glasses on, you will see the world in pink. If you put blue glasses on, you will see the world in blue. If you have black glass on, well, you won’t see anything because they block out the light.

Most people dedicate a lot of their energy to changing the world around them, when the greatest and easiest impact would come from just changing their glasses, or in our case, our beliefs about the world inside and outside of us. It is true that not everything can be changed by changing our glasses, but changing our beliefs have a tendency to snowball, for better and for worse. If we make small adjustments in our belief systems, it will lead to exponential change because our beliefs are highly interconnected.

This post is part 1 of 4 in the series Affirmations

Save Your Marriage: Expressing Feelings

Married couple walking down the road

Expressing feelings in a relationship is very important. Feelings are at the heart of every marriage. We get married because we love and have strong and positive feelings towards someone, and we choose to spend our lives and have children with him or her.

As long as we express those happy and wonderful feelings towards our partners, the more happy our relationship with them will be. Problems start when we express those not-so-happy feelings and this can easily get out of control.

Many of my relationship-coaching clients confuse between thoughts and feelings. They learned that expressing feelings was important so they added the phrase “I feel” into their communication. Unfortunately, instead of expressing feelings, they disguised thoughts as feelings.

Imagine your communication with your partner as a ball game. You can throw the ball in a way that your partner will catch or you can throw the ball in a way that will probably hurt them. One of these is called communication and is a constructive way to create a happy marriage. The other is called “the blame game” or painful communication and it contributes to struggles in a marriage. No one wants to play a ball game if they need to protect themselves from getting hurt.

This post is part 24 of 24 in the series Save Your Marriage

The Ten Commandments of Good Marriage

Ronit and Gal celebrating many years of good marriage

This week Gal and I celebrate 34 years together, including many years of good marriage. To celebrate, we decided to go on a trip to Thailand. The photo above is of us at the top of one of the most beautiful places in the world – Ang Tong National Park in Ko Samui. This trip was one of the first times in the last 25 years that we took 2 weeks off. It was the first time since we became parents that we took time away from work and kids, and went away on a vacation. It was wonderful.

The question that we often get, after 34 years together, is “How did you do that?”. The answer I have in mind is, “one day at a time”. 34 years, each with 365 days of love, challenges, excitements, disappointments, happiness, anger, joy and frustration. It had both its ups and its downs. I guess we need the sun and the rain in order to appreciate the rainbow. Our love to each other has changed, for the better.

One of my clients, who has been married for 2 years, talked about married life being boring. She asked me if being married to the same guy for that long is not boring. I told her that I can say many things about my relationship with gal, but it is far, far from being boring. So she asked me about my tips and I came up with my own ten commandments of marriage.

Save Your Marriage: The Nitpicker

Nit comb

In the last chapter of save your marriage, I explained how a “king/queen” mentality can impact even the most wonderful of relationships. Over time, kings only strengthen their position of feeling superior, which can drive any “servant” out of the relationship.

In this chapter, I will talk about the king’s cousin, the nitpicker.

In a similar way to the king who adopts his mentality from his upbringing, the nitpicker adopts his habits from his parents. Growing up with a parent who is a nitpicker starts a pattern that children carry on into adulthood. Depending on their emotional state, kids will choose to either adopt or totally reject this mentality. They will either be like their parents or avoid their company and adopt a completely new way to communicate. This is not a conscious decision. Most people are not even aware that they do it. That is why external help is necessary if you want to change from a nitpicking communicating style.

This post is part 23 of 24 in the series Save Your Marriage

Parenting 101: Top Parenting Essentials

Happy parenting creates a happy family

After coaching so many parents, and raising my own kids, I have accumulated many essential parenting tips that I want to share with you. I hope you find them useful.

Take care of your happiness first. Just like they tell you on a plane, you should put the oxygen mask on your own face before helping your kids. If you want to raise happy kids, you must take care of your own happiness first. If you do not have oxygen, you are no good to your kids. Happy Parents Raise Happy Kids.

Be positive. It is very easy to notice what your kids are doing wrong but harder to pay attention to the great things they are doing. Parents tend to take the good things for granted. In life, you get what you focus on and parenting is exactly the same. If you focus on good thing, you will have more of them. If you focus on problems, conflicts, difficulties, bad manners, you will have more of them. If you notice your child doing something good, say it! Praise kids for being kind, congratulate them for making an effort, acknowledge their kindness and you will see more of it.

Moving House Made Easy: Telling the Kids

Snail with a house on its back saying: we are moving

One major challenge of moving houses is telling the kids about it. Most parents are afraid to do this. They wonder when the right time will be to share the information with the kids and how to do it.

If you have young kids, do not tell them about the move a long time in advance.

Children’s perception of time is not sophisticated enough yet and they will just be anxious. As soon as you tell your kids that the move is on, they begin to deal emotionally by saying goodbye to the people and things around them (this is a coping mechanism we all have to manage). As a result, kids who are about to move away are often not invited to parties. People around them do not invest in their relationships any more.

This happens to adults as well…

This post is part 3 of 13 in the series Moving House Made Easy

Self Esteem Mini Course (20): Boosting Kids’ Self Esteem

Woman looking full of self esteem

Every parent wants their child to have high self esteem. This mini course shares tips that help make that happen. In the last chapter of the mini course I shared 60 sentences parents say that kill kids’ self esteem.

The worst 4 things we, as parents, can do that compromises our kids’ self esteem are:

Telling them they are wrong
Expressing disappointment
Expressing shame
Expressing doubt in the kids’ attempts
Fortunately, we can also say the opposite things, which will boost their self esteem

This post is part 20 of 20 in the series Self Esteem Mini-Course

Cancer is Like Tight Shoes

Palms in the shape of a heart - a symbol for breast cancer

These days, cancer seems to impact pretty much everyone. My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer recently and Gal’s mom, who I loved very much, died from cancer about 8 years ago. For her, cancer was a long battle. She beat it over and over again for many years, until it beat her.

A very close aunt of mine died from cancer, and another aunt is fighting cancer for the third time now. Gal himself had cancer about 5 years ago.

And you know what? Life is not the same. Even if you are fortunate enough to recover, life is not the same anymore. It becomes divided between “before” and “after” the discovery.

For some people, cancer is a wake-up call that makes them embrace life and/or rearrange their priorities. Others drown themselves in self pity and completely let go of life.

Knowing Your Happiness

Signs of happiness

I have been teaching happiness for many years and one of the things most of my clients want to know is how to find out when they are happy. You see, people are focused on what is going wrong in their lives. They have signs that tell them that things are not going great. Let me share some with you.

image”I am unhappy when I’m in conflict”

“I am unhappy when I don’t succeed”

“I am unhappy when things don’t happen the way I want them to happen”

“I am unhappy when people do not agree with me”

“I am unhappy when I am tired”

“I am unhappy when I don’t have the money to do all the things I want to do”

“I am unhappy if I can’t predict the future”

“I am unhappy if I am not in control all the time”

“I am unhappy when I worry”

“I am unhappy when people do not appreciate me”

“I am unhappy when others are more successful than me”

Research shows that people have more signs for unhappiness than signs for happiness.

Ronit Baras

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