The Power of a Positive Mom ~ Week 2

[image width=”177″ height=”250″ frame=”simple” align=”left”]http://www.startsateight.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/The_Power_of_a_Positive_Mom_Jacket_Cover.jpg[/image] Wednesday over at The Homeschool Village the 8 week group discussion about the book, The Power of a Positive Mom by Karol Ladd is in it’s second week! Below you can find the reading schedule from Jenn over at Daze of Adventure who is leading the discussion.

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** Reading Schedule ** 8 Weeks
Each post will be a “recap” of the chapters — so it would help to read ahead – however we all know life happens. Our heart is that you keep reading the book!

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April 6th Jenn will share her thoughts on the introduction and Portrait of a Positive Mom (chapters 1 & 2)
April 13th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #1 chapters 3, 4, & 5
April 20th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #2 chapters 6, 7, & 8
April 27th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #3 chapters 9, 10, & 11
May 4th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #4 chapters 12, 13, & 14
May 11th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #5 Chapters 15 & 16
May 18th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #6 Chapters 17 & 18
May 25th Jenn will share her thoughts on Principle #7 Chapter 19 & 20 & Conclusion

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After reading Chapters 3,4 & 5 and checking out both Jenn’s thoughts at Daze of Adventure and the discussion questions from Homeschool Village on Blog Frog, here are my thoughts:

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There are two major things that Karol touched on in these chapters that I want to talk about in relation to myself. The first is about using positive, encouraging words to build up our children. She states that it takes 10 positive, encouraging things to neutralize one negative! The second thing I wanted to address is about the power of a smile!

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Karol tells us that to be a positive mom, “we need to spend quantity as well as quality time with our children.” We need to know them. Know our children’s likes and dislikes, their behavior tendencies, strengths and weaknesses. By truly knowing our children, we can truly and honestly speak positively to them and about them. If I had never seen my daughter tumble on the floor at gymnastics, how can I celebrate with her after she makes a huge breakthrough with the height of her tumbling pass? I can’t, of course.

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Here is the catch for me, I have no problem spending the time, asking the questions, and knowing my children. My problem is in a lack of patience with the everyday things. After the 70th time I have asked one to finish their lunch, and the 30th time I have asked another to sit down and focus on their work, I just don’t have the energy nor do I feel positive and encouraging. This is where I falter. My children need me to be supportive, encouraging, and positive, even when I don’t always feel that way. As Karol says, “As mothers, we hold the key. There is no better stimulus to motivate young people toward goodness than the knowledge that their best qualities are noticed and appreciated by mom.” Therefore my goal is to take a deep breathe, and in those moments of weakness when I am frustrated and spent, to find one positive thing to say to that child. Because it is in these moments that I am not the loving positive mom I should be.

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🙂 Now, how about a SMILE 🙂

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This is definitely something I could stand to do more of! Karol asks us what image our children might have when they hear the word mother. Are we the “warm and cheerful mom”, the “haggard mom”, or maybe the “angry mom”. It is a little scary to wonder what first would come to their minds! All too often I feel as though I fall into the latter two categories. Getting too tied up in the every day little nags, instead of focusing on the joy and happiness in our lives. What if I stopped and smiled, said a kind word or two, how would that change the mood at that moment? Smiling can be contagious, a gentle word of praise or encouragement can fill a person up and lift the mood.

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So here are my goals that I am taking away from these chapters. Some are a little smaller and more short term, some larger and will span over a longer time.
1. For every frustrated moment that comes up during the day I will take a deep breath, and say something kind before I try to proceed with the situation.
2. Help my children to think about their behaviors, what are they trying to accomplish? Make a list of short term and long term goals that they would like to attain in these key areas of growth: mental, physical, and social.
3. Remember to be more realistic with my expectations of each child. I am a type-A, achiever, who expects a lot, too much, of them sometimes. If I can set realistic goals for them it will allow them to attain the goals. In turn, giving both myself and them a feeling of confidence and achievement.
4. Smile. Smile in the greeting of people I come in contact with, starting with my own family.