Are you a lark or an owl?
Maybe it’s easier to ask, when you get out of bed do you take a little while to warm up and mellow out? Are you sparkly and chipper? or something inbetween?
Like it or not, I’ve always been an early night up early person. Having my three boys really messed around with my lark tendencies. Feeling tired and beat from the ups and downs of babyhood and toddlerhood only to restart two more times. I think many of us go through this fuzzy, irritiable stage.
During the night feeds remembering not to be bright and chipper smiling and playful when I went to greet the kids. Otherwise we’d all be up far too long.
All that smiling gave the wrong impression to my upside down sleeping boys. Light smiles and less light. Seeing the link really clearly between how we greet the kids had a big impact on me.
1. Our children look to us to determine their initial emotions
When I was cranky, tired and exhausted and came in with that face to my child there was a cascade of negative emotion that reflected right back at me. It took a long time to make that link that I was bringing the down to the party.
2. We have the power to set the tone for the morning
Those first few words and sentences and how we say them prick or comfort our children. There doesn’t seem to be an inbetween.
Going into the boys room since no one had stirred, my intention was to wake them up. But seeing the LEGO carnage, clothes and books everywhere without thinking I was starting with………. Oh my goodness, what happened in this room?
Not the best way to start the morning with the kids. Immediately they were on the defensive and probably irritated by my lack of understanding the ins and outs of the elaborate setup they had.
I saw mess. They say play.
I kinda blue that one. Because of that incident that happened when I had two little guys. It was big Duplo too…. not even the little LEGO that forms a thin film across their room now. I noticed I had to do two things.
- Check my attitude and my face. They need to be coordinated and matching outfits please.
I love them. They love me. It’s not intentional or personal. They are playing. I wouldn’t liked to woken up with demands, frustration and the shouty voice so I won’t for the little guys. Before I go in or when I’m greeted. My attitude and face must be sending out the matching message.
- Smile and be happy to see them.
Who doesn’t like being made a fuss of? Well the older boys in public when their mates are about, but you get my idea. When we smile it’s hard to be cross, carry past problems over. We feel calmer and our voice is a little warmer
I really believe we often get back what we give and ouch many times it’s been prickly over here. Manners are caught. Not just the please, thank yous and after yous. What about the way we talk to each other? How we speak to adults? the simple words we use with children? Are tone matters.
We explore this more in Creating a family haven – module 3- Ps and Qs.
Your challenge ( and mine): The next time you’re greeting your children after a long time away. Maybe it’s in the morning, after school or naptime.
Will you have your coordinating matching outfits + your smile and happy tone.
If you’ve enjoyed this post you might like other posts like this on my Parenting with Purpose board or share with friends who’ll enjoy the challenge.
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