Do you like your kids?
I mean, you LOVE them, but do you really like them? Do you enjoy being with them when you aren’t feeling especially… loving?
What I’m getting at is this. If you love your kids, but often you find yourself wanting to get away from them more than not, then there is a chance that you don’t really enjoy them, or even like their personalities all that much.
I know that what I am saying is probably going to make some super-moms who put their children at the top of every important list very upset. But I think that this needs to be said!
Sometimes we don’t like our kids very much! Sometimes they are whiny and off-putting, or aggressive and obnoxious and if they weren’t ours, we probably wouldn’t want to deal with them!
If this is you, stay with me! If you think I’m crazy and clearly a bad mother- well I’d love it if you’d hear me out, but you are certainly welcome to click off this page!
I for one, have struggled with not always finding my children the most pleasant humans in the world to be around! Don’t get me wrong, I love them. But some days that is all that holds me to them, love. Well love is great, but I want more!
I want to really enjoy my kids, to hang with them and WANT to sit and do nothing with them. I want to be able to tell people their wonderful qualities without throwing in “yeah but he’s a little bit crazy too!”
Most of all, I want for them to someday come back on their own choosing and want to hang out with me!
So I think I figured it out!
Here’s How to absolutely, 100% enjoy your kids (most of the time)- in 3 Simple Steps!
First. See them for who they are, not for who you WANT them to be.
This, my friends, is huge. If you do nothing else, do this. In my own life, at least 90% of my frustrations with my kids stem from my own ideal image of them that I have in my mind. I think that they should act and be a certain way because it seems right to me. This is not seeing the child for who he really is, but really, you are seeing all that he isn’t when measuring him up to the “perfect child” image.
Now, I am not saying that you should let your kid do whatever he wants to do, obviously there are certain things that are strictly wrong and right (like killing, and washing your hands after you use the bathroom!). I am only suggesting that most of the things our kids do that make us cringe, can not be put into the right or wrong categories. Most things are just their opinion of how they want to do something. It may be different from your idea of how to act, but that is OK. Different is not always bad.
Second. Whatever you do, don’t compare them to others.
This is another biggie. Comparing your kids to other kids almost always ends badly (unless that other kid is truly the best in everything, and is super smart, and has great social skills, AND has won the gene lottery – but even so, he still has his weaknesses). Not only does comparing your kid make them feel bad about themselves, but it makes YOU feel bad about them, which starts a cycle that just perpetuates itself! Your kid is unique, he or she is not supposed to be anyone else! Be glad for that!
Third. Focus on their unique talents 7 times more than their downfalls.
I head it said once, that for every criticism you have to give someone, you need 7 compliments to counteract it (or something like that)! We often hear criticisms much more loudly than we hear compliments, and your kid is no different. If he feels like you are always telling him things that he is doing wrong, and hardly ever mentioning things that he is great at, this will start to wear on him! And just like allowing yourself to compare your him to someone else, focusing on his bad qualities only perpetuates the cycle of negative feelings (him towards himself, and you toward him)! Practice focusing on his amazing qualities (however difficult they may be to find sometimes) and you will be surprised at how quickly your underlying feelings about him start to change for the positive. You are literally retraining your brain to see the positive!
These 3 simple steps are pretty simple, but they may not be easy at first. That’s Ok. Keep coming back to these steps and I promise, you’ll be surprised at how quickly you start to enjoy being with your kids!
For more ideas on how to enjoy your kids, check out my article on ways to reconnect with your kids.
Let me know in the comments below what you enjoy about your kids!