Parents often feel guilty about not spending enough time with their children. Life is so busy with work, taking care of the home and all of the things that need to be done of when raising a family so there is often so little time to spend with the kids.
It’s easy to see that if parents don’t spend quality time with their children, their children could come to the conclusion that they are not important and this can harm a child’s sense of self.
By taking the time to spend just 10-15 minutes of one-on-one quality time with each of your children every day, parents show their children that they are important, that their parents care and are interested in how they’re going and that they are there for their children if they need support, advice or just someone who’ll listen. ...<< MORE >>
Human babies are among the most vulnerable living beings. Left alone, they die in a matter of hours or days at most. Babies depend on their carers for their physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing and how they experience their early years can have a significant impact on how they live their whole life.
When our son Cameron was born, I felt vulnerable and overwhelmed by the responsibility of raising another human being. What did I know about his nurturing his physical, psychological and emotional development? As a parent, thinking about how I might ‘wreck’ him was really scary.
For the last five years I have been reading the latest research in child development and parenting, and it has helped me to feel more confident as a parent. My research has revealed that there are a number of fundamental basics that help parents grow their vulnerable babies into capable, caring and ...<< MORE >>
I read an article in the Sunday life magazine on mother’s day from a well known guest columnist entitled “Motherhood has made me tough.” I am sure it was written with some tongue in cheek for entertainment value, but alas at the time, I didn’t find it very funny despite my eclectic sense of humour!
Here are some excerpts:
What I didn’t know before I became a parent is how annoying children can be. Some of them complain ALL OF THE TIME…Children are greedy, they can be mean, they can manipulate you…and demand attention…”
Have I given you enough to get the general idea?
I was particularly annoyed as this was published in a Mother’s day special edition!
I couldn't help but ponder, and of course share my thoughts with my dear husband, as we drove home from the markets that if we are to raise a generation of children who are caring, compassionate and socially responsible, then parents must lead by example! After all where do children learn the most…from those ...<< MORE >>
Today’s children are experiencing an alarming increase in the rate of obesity, type II diabetes and other health-related issues that can be avoided by introducing simple
healthy lifestyle habits as early as possible. As Parents are busy they need healthy life style choices they can easily introduce into daily life. I’ve had a number of health-related questions and
so here are some ideas I hope you find helpful:
Recently I have received many questions about how to communicate with teenagers. Parents are frustrated with teens who are secretive about their lives, don’t want their parents’ advice, think they know everything and would rather follow their peers than listen to the voice of reason! Does this sound familiar to you? Here’s what can you do.
The key is to take a long-term rather than short-term approach by focusing on your relationship and your connection with your teen. Start by reflecting honestly on the following questions. Have you made time to talk with your teen without being judgmental or offering advice? (I know that is SUPER hard to do).
Do you regularly have fun together? Can you remember the last time you asked your children to be part of a family decision and really listened to and included their input? Do your children believe that you believe in them and that you respect them?
If you spend time focusing on your relationship with your teen, building trust, respect and love, you should find they’ll be more open with you and who knows … maybe even ask for your support.... << MORE >>
I’ve heard so many parents say “raising children is one of the hardest but most rewarding jobs in the world”. The rewarding part is the love and the joy that children bring into our lives – even
before they are here.
I remember the excitement I felt when Colin and I talked about starting a family. Four months later I could hardly contain my joy when I found out we were pregnant. After repeating the home pregnancy test three times, yes, three times – just to be sure – I ran to Colin to share the great news and boy did we feel the joy!
Our son Cameron has brought so much joy to our family with his smile, laugh, ideas and playful sense of humour. I wish I could tell you that I en-joy him all day, every day, but unfortunately, I can’t; and there is one simple reason – joy is a whole being experience and presence is the key to feeling it.
I spend a lot of my day in ‘go-go-go’ mode to get things done – ...<< MORE >>
Just recently Cameron (our five-year-old son) and I were staying with my sister Dee and her nine-year-old daughter Aleksia at their holiday home. The kids were playing together when out of the blue Cameron exclaims “bloody hell!” We all stopped what we were doing and looked at him and Dee and I tried not to laugh, even though it was quite funny. I wasn’t 100 percent sure of what I’d just heard, so I gently asked “what did you just say honey?” By this time Cameron had worked out that they were not good words so he tentatively replied “nothing”. I chose to leave it at that as I still didn’t know where he’d heard it and hoped it was just a one-time thing.
A few days later we’d returned home from our holiday and my husband Colin was talking on the phone. Cameron and I both clearly heard Colin say “bloody hell”! How funny! Since then I’ve become aware that Colin actually says it every few days and neither of us had really ...<< MORE >>
A common way parents influence their child’s behaviour is through rewards and punishments. Rewards can include: praise, a sticker on a chart, TV or electronic games time or even financial rewards as an incentive to behave a certain way. Punishments can include: a stern talking to, time out, loss of privileges and even harsher punishments for ‘bad’ behaviour.
Are you stuck in a cycle of rewards and punishments? And, if so is this the way you want to relate to your child? Another name for this is ‘conditional’ or ‘transactional’ parenting.
It basically goes like this:
If you do ‘this’, then you will get ‘that’ or if do don’t do ‘this’ you won’t get ‘that’!This isn’t what a family is about – ...<< MORE >>
One of the fundamental life skills of the Inspired Children program focuses on empowering children to develop their personal power and become resilient. But what exactly is Personal Power?What does it mean to have Personal Power? Today's blog is all about understanding three keys aspects of Personal power self esteem, self confidence and self efficacy<< MORE >>
We all know that children who are involved in a variety of physical activities are healthier than children who are not. Exercising helps people maintain their ideal body weight, strength and fitness levels and this is true for our children too!
So where are your kids right now? Are they outdoors being active playing some kind of sport or are they sitting in front of a television or computer? Children who spend hours watching television don’t make the best use of their growing muscles. Sitting or lying down in front of the television set for long hours can cause growing muscles to lose their strength and flexibility.. Your children don’t have to be involved in elaborate team activities or extreme sports – their exercise can simply include walking with family or friends, playing in a neighbourhood park or taking the family dog out for some fresh air and exercise.<< MORE >>
Take a moment to think back to your childhood. Do you recall times when an adult scoffed at your concerns and dismissed your emotions? How did it make you feel? Now, think about whether you take your child’s emotions seriously? If not, how do think this makes your child feel?
Raising an emotionally well-balanced child begins with acknowledging his concerns and feelings, and helping him find ways to appropriately vent anger, frustration, fear, and sorrow. Your little one's fear of monsters under the bed is ‘real’ to them so a dismissive comment like “don’t be silly there are no such things as monsters” can be hurtful! Alternatively you could help him understand his fear, find the true source of his worry, and then tackle the emotional Bogeyman together.
Have you considered how ‘conditional’ life is and especially how conditional it is for children?
I've been confronted with the notion of becoming an ‘unconditional parent’. As parents, we often unconsciously set conditions and rules for our children that rob them of the chance to learn how to make good choices and why they should make good decisions so as to empower themselves. For example here are some common ‘conditional’ statements
"If you eat all your vegetables, then you can have..."
“If you don’t do your homework, then there will be no …”
"If you have a good rest now, then you'll be able to..."
“If you get good grades at school, then you will…”
“If you can’t speak respectfully to me then you will not …”
Although I realised all my words were given with ...<< MORE >>
Many times parents ask me about what they can do to change their child’s behaviour. For example, I received an email from a distraught mother asking for help. “My son doesn’t have any friends, he gets picked on at school and he never stands up for himself. What can I do to help him?” Unfortunately this is a common story for many school children.
An important step in making lasting positive changes to behaviours is to firstuncover and challenge any limiting beliefs your child may have. You know that your beliefs drive your behaviours right? For example if you believe you can’t do something you are unlikely to try it, on the other hand if you believe you are capable of trying something new you are more likely to give it a go. It’s the same with your child.
If your child doesn’t have any friends, begin by uncovering ...<< MORE >>
Think back to your childhood. Were you introverted or extroverted? Were you confident or insecure? Were you a risk taker or risk adverse? Did you rely on others for praise or did you look inside or a combination of the two to work out your self-concept?
When I think back to my childhood, I was one of those children who was sometimes considered to be a bit 'annoying' by my teachers. Why? Because I was the noisy one in class! I loved learning so much that I wanted to participate in class and so I was always blurting out the answer or when I managed to restrain myself, I was begging to be picked because I knew the answers. I was an inquisitive student and unafraid of having a go, which meant that I didn’t leave much room for others to have turn! I did very well at school– proof that inquisitiveness, hard work and a love of learning do lead to academic success. With all of that, ...<< MORE >>
I recently interviewed Dr Robinson on the Inspired Children radio program where she shared her research on the negative impact of stress in pregnancy as well as ways to help pregnant mothers reduce their stress. You can listen to the replay here. I’ve summarised some of the key points from our interview in a two part blog series.
In part 1 of the series, Dr Robinson explained that babies who experience stress in the womb are more likely to be born with associated physical, behavioural and emotional issues. In part 2, Dr Robinson shares her insights into early detection and support for children with physical, behavioural and emotional issues.
Young children with behavioural problems can display a ...<< MORE >>
Life is really busy, right? While busy can be exciting, more often than not it also leads to a lot of stress! We all know that prolonged stress is harmful for our health and it’s estimated that 95% of all diseases stem from stress. What many pregnant women may not know is that stress during pregnancy can also be harmful to their babies. Research shows that when mums-to-be experience stressful pregnancies, there is an increased likelihood that their children will develop physical, behavioural and emotional problems. Dr Monique Robinson has been researching this area for over a decade and shares her research in Chapter 2 of my book Inspired Children: : How the leading minds of today raise their kids.
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Learning to effectively and efficiently communicate with your baby at an early age has huge implications in both the short and long term period. It not only strengthens the bonds between parents and their children, it also helps foster the conditions needed to raise Inspired Children. One of my special guests on the Inspired Children Radio Program, Viven Sabel, author of<< MORE >>
Raising Inspired Children is all about teaching them life skills from the time they are born! Communication and bonding are key elements to establishing a strong relationship with your child for life. Opening the lines of meaningful communicationbetween yourself and your baby isn't something reserved for the realm of science fiction. There is now a way to understand and communicate with your baby- yes, that's right, your baby! One of my guests on the Inspired Children Radio Program, Vivien Sabel, has discovered that babies communicate meaningfully with their parents ...<< MORE >>