We’ve all dreamed of a magical manual for parenting, step-by-step answers that deliver instant results. I’ve yet to find one – but here’s some suggestions from my life experiences.
1} Mom and Dad’s relationship – Is there tension? Actions speak louder than words. Even a baby can take on a restlessness when parents are at odds. The looks on our faces, tone of voice and even our breathing patterns signal security or instability to our little ones. Check this one off of your list. √
2} Conversation in their presence ~ We all have issues to discuss – but our kids don’t have the grace or emotional framework to process our conflict. Spare your children the pain of worrying over life’s circumstances. Protect them, especially if they’re under 10. Life is good!
3} Don’t let them see you sweat! That’s what a prayer closet is for. Our kids deserve a childhood void of unnecessary stresses. Our burdens are not theirs to bear.
4} Put on a happy face ~Years ago, we lived in a rental house with a wall of mirrors. I’d whisk by in my busy-ness and get a glimpse of my face. Ugh! We all have seasons of serious focus – but our kids deserve better. Stop and smile. Better yet – practice smiling on purpose. This isn’t fake – it’s gracious to those around you.
5} Private phone conversations ~ Whether negotiating a hospital bill or discussing a sensitive issue with your mother – spare your kids the pain of listening. Especially for audio learners – their mind is like a tape-recorder. The words go in and may not come out. I know! I AM one!
6} Get outside ~ Take your kids outside and let them dig, run and breathe! A few minutes out of doors can readjust a little ones spirit and calm their mind.
7}Hug! Let your kids see you hug on your husband. Don’t expect him to be the initiator – tender touch is pleasant to the soul – even the souls of those little observers. They’ll smile – I guarantee!
8} Music ~ Do you have music playing in your home? The sounds of life around them can stabilize their soul. Fill their hearts with quality music to develop their taste and warm their little hearts.
9} Lipstick ~ In the old days, women put on lipstick before Dad returned from work. The concept is timeless but the application has changed a bit. Maybe a fresh t-shirt, combed hair or just a smile to greet your children’s father when he arrives. They’ll get it.
10} Scripture ~ Our grown kids tell me it brought them comfort to see their parents reading the word. They can trust a mom who’s trusting the Lord. Talking of God’s word when we walk along the way, lie down and rise up calms an anxious heart. Deuteronomy 6:7