The day to day happenings, are challenging while you are living them and beautiful in their own way when you look back on them.
Popcorn in the cushions. Writings on the wall. Rock art on your car. Someday we will be wondering how we arrived at a place without bedtime charts, without giggling in between our walls, with a full night’s sleep and accessible outlets. The challenge is being mindful of the clock ticking. Your reaction to the rock art, the writings on the wall and the popcorn in the cushions, indirectly shape your child’s self-worth. These day to day happenings are little experiences that make a big footprint on your child’s self-esteem. How you react to these little things does not go unnoticed. Although, maybe unconciously, your littles are paying attention. They form their opinions about the world and themselves based on your reactions to the world and yourself. The tiny things do matter and if you view them from that perspective you can use them as opportunities. Be conscious about creating ideals of perfection with respect to sports, academics or body image. It starts young. Encourage them to “work hard and play hard”, but that the goal is not to be “the best”. I have seen that backfire many times in families I have worked with. There’s a fine line and I have been on it myself. We all want the best for our children. We all want them to succeed. Find the beauty in the little things. Find the big lessons. Creating a solid self-esteem in my own kids and my patients is one of my foremost goals. Day to day, I encounter bullying, childhood trauma, struggling families. I’m witness to balancing acts with working parents on one end, needy children on the other, and everyone trying to reach “the” happy spot. Some of us always teeter on what is demanded of us and what we truly need to experience happiness.
The key is recognizing this and keeping it real.