So along with this Mom in Training challenge/counseling, I am blogging the results of what I am learning. Instead of finding something new to type today I thought I would share with you what an invaluable service Kristi Miller has provided me. This approach really works with me and my son. Anyway, last night we had a major breakthrough. THANK YOU KRISTI!
Last night was my third session with Kristi (- Solutions in Parenting). I am having some personal anxieties due to my living conditions at the moment, so I am having a difficult time centering, dealing with my son. Last session she had me focus on really getting to the core of what I am feeling when I get anxious/angry. I realize that being centered lies at the root of any successful relationship in life, but hey I am human.
After the second weeks session, I have started to become much more aware. Last night, was another great example. It is very nice having her watch my interaction with my son, and step in to give me some interaction and conversation methods to follow. Here is an example.
While we were discussing some of the discipline problems, and how that this expansion is normal behavior when our children are finding their independence at certain ages, A. starts drawing on the wall (thankfully it was a washable marker). I could not see what he was doing, but Kristi turns to me and gives me the "look at what he is doing" sign. He says Mommy i drew a... whatever it was. Now, Kristi and I decided that it would be a good time to watch me in action. I was not really upset with him for drawing on the wall. I find his creativity quite amazing. The first thing that crossed my mind was he needs an easel. So instead of getting angry I got frustrated because I knew that I would be the one "cleaning up this mess". (notice how you are feeling when things like this happen is my new mantra) I started talking to A. about how I loved his picture but it may not be the best place to draw it.. and on and on and on. Austin started getting very physical at this point and not listening. Kristi stepped in and took over. She pointed to his drawing, and said, it may stain the wall, and we need to remove it. What do you think will take it off? And if we use the water, how do we get it on the wall? And within a few minutes, he had a bucket and a sponge, and was cleaning the wall. I then suggested if he liked doing that much he could clean something else. He was completely motivated. I was amazed.
What I discovered is that I use way to many words. He can be motivated with the proper emotion attached. If you make it a challenge, and he has the tools, he will feel like he has accomplished something, and he doesn't feel shamed. Which to me is the most important aspect. I was shamed as a child, and that has a very adverse effect on self esteem.
Challenge for myself this week: Make sure to get to core emotion/feeling, a quick check of where I am, before I approach a situation out of reaction. Understand when I am using too much speech. Make it a habit to speak briefly and concisely. Offer him the option/chance to be independent by helping him discover for himself.
Every challenge is an opportunity for each of us to grow. I have to remember that and reduce my frustration and anger.
Happy Weekends all.