Recently, I noticed that when I’m with my kids, I do a lot of directing and correcting. I also notice it’s more fun, when we’re just… connecting. Laughing, reading, baking, playing a game, or even just a fun / funny exchange of chit-chat when I’m folding laundry and a kid is running past me for a toy.
Please know that when I’m directing and correcting, it’s not that I’m a jerk about it. My tone of voice is (usually) steady, kind and respectful. It’s just that I’m … sort of relentless.
So, one of my next overarching parenting goals is to turn things around. I do wonder: With a 2-year-old, 6-year-old, 8-year-old, and 10-year old, is this goal possible? I believe it is — though I am, admittedly, an optimist by nature. Luckily, my husband believes so too (some call him a pessimist but he calls himself a realist). Independently of one another we both came up with the idea.
This new goal is the perfect follow-on from my Dec. 15, 2013 post. There, I talked of wanting to be better about giving kids attention when things are going well (instead of waiting until there’s misbehavior, trauma, or strife). I started an observation journal to raise my awareness to the habit changing this would require. The 90% / 10% goal just further supports and develops the “giving attention when things are good” goal.
I’m not trying to be perfect. I just want to enjoy my life and my family. I want to make sure we’re building strong connections that will last a lifetime. We will ALL need them.