Guiding our children to shine their inner LIGHT by being our absolute best!

Posts tagged ‘self care’

I Approve of Me!

I had an interesting experience today at school. My kids had just come back to the room from a humanity special. The kids were transitioning into the classroom and chatting by their cubbies as they put their library books away. It was a typical transition period until I heard a brief conversation…

One of my young girls turned to another young girl and said, “Are you still mad at me?” Generally, I wouldn’t pay attention to this because we all get annoyed with friends once in awhile and we talk about it and work it out. However, it was the look in her eyes when she asked that told a deeper story.

I know the history of these two girls. One has a tendency to get upset when her friends don’t do what she’d like them to do. The other is a ‘pleaser‘ and just wants to make everyone happy. The pleaser had the puppy dog eyes when she timidly asked the question and you could tell that deep inside of her she was frightened that the answer would be yes.

The girls noticed that I was paying attention to their conversation and quickly scurried off. As they brushed by me, I caught the eye of my ‘pleaser’ and said, “Hey there, do you remember what we talked about at the last Girls Rule meeting?” She earnestly replied, “Yes. You taught us that we needed to believe in ourselves and remember that we need to approve of ourselves, not others.” I smiled and said, “Yes, and what else?” She began to smile and she replied, “I don’t ever have to give my power away. I need to like myself.” My eyes and her eyes gave a high five and she bounced back to her seat.

All too often our kids are searching for approval from not only their teachers, coaches and parents but also their peers. They look to others to validate their accomplishments, their thoughts, their feelings and their outer being as well. We teach them to strive for acceptance from a very young age without even realizing it. Unfortunately, we have set them up for failure without intending it.

How did we do this?

Well, think about it for a minute… From the moment you held that baby in your arms you smiled when they did things you liked. When they lifted their heads for the first time, when they lifted themselves for the first time, when they reached for a toy or food or you! You encouraged them with your smile (and clapping and cooing) and they learned very early on that they liked the way it felt when they made you smile. They also learned that you smiled when they did something that ‘pleased’ you, so what are they doing today with their friends?

You guessed it, looking for that smile in everything they do and say. (looking for approval)

Now, wait a minute Mrs. Savini, you mean to tell me I wasn’t suppose to encourage my child? No, that’s not what I am saying at all. In fact, I LOVE that you encouraged your child, you smiled at your child, you gave them approval, but now it’s time to teach them to approve of themselves so that no-one ever takes their power away.

It’s so critically important for us to teach our children to love and approve of themselves at a young age because if we don’t, then they will always search for approval from others. And, we all know that this becomes a long, lonely and sometimes heartbreaking road.

So how do we do this?

We give them a mirror.

1) Teach them how to do mirror work. It’s easy peezy, lemon squeezy! All you have to do, is look in the mirror and say something POSITIVE to yourself. ‘I like you’, ‘You’re a good writer’, ‘You’re a good friend’, You’re Important!’ My kids do this every Wednesday morning in school and I can see the positive impact it has on them weekly.

2) When they ask your opinion of them or their work or their behavior, hold up the mirror instead of immediately giving them your opinion. Get down on their level (physically), look at them directly in their eyes and ask, “What do you think?” Give them the opportunity to reflect on their own work, behavior and being before you offer your thoughts.

3) When they do something that pleases you, tell them but remember to encourage them to look at themselves as well. You may say, “How do you feel about this?” or “I’m so proud of you! You should be proud of yourself. Are you proud of yourself?”

By constantly reminding our children to look in the mirror (physically, mentally and emotionally) we are giving them their power back and teaching them to love themselves. A child who seeks approval from within is a child who will always find the light in the darkness and who will never, no never give their power away to another individual.

Teach them to approve of themselves and you’ll give them the gift of a lifetime!

Lots of Love & Tons of Light,

VickiI-Approve-of-Me-seal

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The Very Best YOU!

Why is it that we are so damn hard on ourselves?

Why do we wait until we are literally at our breaking point or something goes wrong with our health to heal ourselves?

Yesterday I woke up and was feeling somewhat blue and overwhelmed. I wasn’t sure what was going on but I knew how I felt. Considering that I teach people the importance of feeling your feelings, I took some time to just sit and feel my emotions. As I sat, this thought came to me, ‘What have you done for YOU lately?

Let’s face it, we spend a great deal of our time taking care of others; we take care of our children, our spouses, our pets, our parents or extended family, and sometimes even our co-workers (or in my case, my students). But WHEN do we stop to re-fuel our own tanks?!

I immediately got my butt off the couch and called a spa in the area. I decided that I was going for a facial!

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It took me a while to settle in and relax but this facial included a hand, foot and shoulder massage so I had some help on my journey to relaxation!

As I laid there allowing myself to be pampered, I began to feel that I was re-fueling my own tank. Hmmm, imagine that, taking an hour for yourself to just be pampered? I have to say it was the best decision I made.

Now, I’m not saying that you should ‘check out’ whenever you feel blue or overwhelmed, but what I am saying is that we need to feel our feelings and honor ourselves more often.

Maybe a facial won’t do it for you. Perhaps a walk in nature, some meditation, a trip to the bookstore or a night listening to music would re-fuel your tank.

It doesn’t really matter what you do to re-fuel yourself. Instead, what matters is that you take the time to do so.

Do you know what the best part of my day was yesterday?

It was when I came home and I was in a much better place for my son…

We somehow began talking about soccer and he said that he feels proud of himself because he scores goals.

I smiled and then he continued with, “Mom, do you know why I score goals?”

I responded, “Because you’re good?”

He smiled and said, “Nope! It’s because I believe in myself. You taught me that Mom. Thanks!”

Take time for you so that you can be YOUR best, because the truth is, we are teaching our children how to take care of themselves with our every move.

Lots of Love & Tons of Light,

Vicki

Time Out

Well, it’s the middle of summer and I am finding myself in the same dilemma that many parents find themselves in this time of year…

My son goes to camp daily 1/2 day but as soon as he walks in the door he says, “So, what are we going to do today?” (He’s clearly watching way too much Phineas and Ferb!)

I then feel the immediate pressure to ‘entertain’ him so that he will be happy and his summer will feel complete.

I look around the house and see the list of things to do piling up. I swiftly remember that my deadline for my book is quickly approaching and I gaze to the dining room table and see a pile of ‘stuff’ I need to go through for my business. Of course it doesn’t end there. You could add to the list that I am moving into a brand new school and my classroom is in boxes right now, I am a full-time wife and mother as well with all of the regular household responsibilities and I run workshops and seminars to empower children and adults. And my child has the audacity to ask me, “What are we going to do today?!”

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Anyone would get irritable and snap a few times with all of this going on. It’s easy to see why I have been snapping at him in the past week but that’s honestly unacceptable to me because I know better than anyone that childhood is just too precious to ignore–considering that I am writing a book that focuses on this!

How many hats do we wear as women?

All too many, but my mommy hat is very important to me. In fact, it’s my number one priority and if I feel like I am being pulled in every direction, then I’m not going to be the best mom I can be.

That’s why it’s critically important to carve out time for you!

When I think about why I have been irritable it’s not only because I have so much on my plate, it’s also because I’m not sure what to tackle first because I’m not taking time to relax, rejuvenate and respond to my own needs.

This is when you know it’s time to take a ‘time out’ for yourself and evaluate what’s truly important to you.

The business is important because I’m empowering children and adults and making a difference in the world so I’ll keep that hat but designate specific time for it. The classroom is important but not necessarily most important right now since we have 46 days left of summer vacation. The book is critically important because my deadline is fast approaching-but hey, you can’t rush a good thing, right?

Most important to me is my child. So in order to be my best for him, I need to relax, rejuvenate and respond to my needs. I guess that means a good glass of vino with some friends and perhaps even a pedicure soon!

Time out doesn’t have to be a negative statement. Instead I’m choosing to make it a positive statement and I hope you will too!

Ironically, this morning was ‘hat day’ at my son’s camp. He couldn’t decide which hat to wear so he decided to wear as many as possible. He was struggling and getting frustrated trying to get them all to fit on top of his head without falling. He threw them on the ground a few times and then I came to the rescue. We took our time and figured out which to put on his head first, next and last. It worked perfectly because we were stacking them mindfully. I didn’t think there was any significance to that experience this morning but now I do-

Perhaps that was the Universe’s way of reminding me to stack my hats according to priority and best fit…

We all have tons of hats that pile up on our heads but if we are constantly trying to pick them up we are not wearing them well-and really, if you can’t wear a hat well…what’s the sense in wearing it at all?

Take a time out for YOU!

Lots of Love & Tons of Light,

Vicki

PS I almost forgot…Take the time to find your true reflection when the kids go back to school with me at the annual Woman’s Worth Retreat in Silver Bay, NY. Check it out by clicking HERE.

You’re Worth it!!