Editor’s Note: This post is from one of our experts at Today’s Innovative Woman, ElaynaFernandez. Today’s Innovative Woman is the sister publication to What’s Up for Kids.
Becoming a Positive MOM starts with getting acquainted with positive parenting attributes we can consciously choose and intentionally practice moment to moment, day to day.
I decided to put together the ABCs of Positive Parenting so we can explore these characteristics together in order to set you up for success on your journey.
Affection ~ Provide daily verbal and non-verbal affection: hugs, kisses, smiles, gentle touch, eye contact, encouragement, compliments, affirmation, and praise, even in the form of thumbs up. You cannot possibly say “I love you” too much!
Beliefs ~ Training up a child is like painting on a blank canvas. You will greatly influence what it looks like. The beliefs you choose to adopt will impact your child forever. Make sure you practice healthy beliefs that serve both of you and the greater good.
Consistency ~ Be constant, have a routine or tradition, and keep your promises. Let your YES be your YES and your NO be your NO. Children need stability in their lives.
Discipline ~ Set clear and fair rules, limits, boundaries, standards, and expectations, then teach them natural consequences. Show them we are “punished by our sins” and not for them. Pick your battles and go easy on honest mistakes!
Example ~ Do what you want them to do and explain what you are doing. Become an empowering role model by finding teaching moments, and providing guidance focusing on the positive. I always say “BE the change you want to see in your child!”
Flexibility ~ Start with a structured plan and a family mission statement, but enjoy the unexpected and the spontaneous. Extend patience, compassion, and forgiveness as needed, and grant second chances!
Gratitude ~ Thank your children. Thank other people. Thank God. Be beyond polite and really mean it. Tell them they did a great job giving or helping and they will want to help and give again. Accept their gifts with love, and makes sure they see you use/wear them, for that is the only way they will know you appreciate it.
Healthy Habits ~ If you want your children to do or be something, do it or be it first…and consistently. Our actions are so loud, we make it hard for them to hear our words. When you have the habits of a person with a healthy attitude, healthy mind, and healthy body, they will learn to be that way.
I-messages ~ Entitlement is learned (and taught). We must practice the art of personal responsibility and own up to our feelings, beliefs, thoughts, and actions so that our children can learn to do the same. Accepting negative feedback gratefully and gracefully is harder said than done, but nonetheless an opportunity for growth as a parent and human being.
Joy ~ The best gift you can ever give the ones you love is a happier you. Laugh, have fun, and enjoy the ride! Life is a journey, not a destination… and it’s a short one, too. Make today your someday so you can share happiness from a place of generosity and not of scarcity, guilt, and resentment.
Kindness ~ Kindness is the essence of love. It is love in action. A positive parent is supportive and makes others feel important, cared for, and appreciated. Giving, volunteering, and sharing are great practices, but HOW you give makes all the difference. Whenever possible, use the power of gentle positive words, the power of a smile, the power of understanding to reverse the tone of any situation or to make someone’s day… and let your children watch.
Letting Go ~ Sing it with me “Let it go, let it go…That perfect girl is gone!” Let go of aspiring for perfection, in both yourself and others. Let go and let God. Let go and laugh. Let go of the past and fill today with love and gratitude for second chances.
Mindfulness ~ Being mindful is one of the most essential positive parenting qualities. Mindfulness is achieved by living in the present moment, and loving what is, without judgement. Being aware of our surroundings, where we are at, and the everyday miracles we see, gives us a different perspective to be kind to ourselves, find acceptance in adversity, and focus forward. Don’t look back, you’re not going there!
Nurturing ~ Our children are born with God-given gifts and talents. Learn about them as people, learn what they love, learn what they are passionate about, and nurture who they are. They are separate individuals who make their own choices… you just do your part.
Openness ~ Open and honest two-way communication is a great way to show love and care. Be a conversation facilitator. Ask, don’t tell. Give your children the freedom to express themselves and listen without judgment, listen actively, listen to learn and to understand. Don’t interrupt!
Partnership ~ I see a partnership as a relationship based on agreements that are mutually beneficial. Partnerships foster a spirit of respect, trust, common values, defined roles, clear expectations, and impeccable communication. When you treat your children as partners, you will live in a win-win environment.
Quiet Time ~ Positive parenting requires a lot of patience, being cool, calm, and collected. Carve out any possible quiet time and rest as much as you can, so you can replenish your patience reserve and contribute to a harmonious home. You cannot share what you don’t have!
Resilience ~ Teaching life skills is one of the most sacred duties of positive parenting. When you get back up every time you fall down, you send your children a message that brings reassurance, peace of mind, and an expanded capacity to deal with the difficulties of life. Tough times don’t last, but tough people do!
Safety ~ In order to thrive, children need a safe, comfortable home environment and to feel free from fear. A positive parent learns effective ways to help their children feel safe physically, mentally, and emotionally, while being careful to not become overprotective.
Togetherness ~ To a child, love spells T-I-M-E. Presence is better than presents.
Find schedule opportunities to give them your undivided one-on-one focus and attention: pray, learn, laugh, and play together. Parents spend an average of 3.5 minutes of meaningful conversation with their children a week. Don’t be a statistic!
Uncritical ~ How does a positive parent exactly help children grow and become better without complaining, being critical, and damaging the child’s self-esteem? 1. Focus on the “problem,” not the person. 2. Focus on progress, not results. 3. Focus forward, not backwards, while acknowledging their presence, their gifts, and their value.
Vulnerable ~ It takes a village to raise a child, so don’t be hard on yourself if you are feeling overwhelmed. I’ve learned that it is okay to cry, to admit you don’t have it all together, and to seek guidance or ask for help. As your children experience your courage, you are giving them permission to be courageous in their own way.
Wings ~ A positive parent tells children who they COULD be, instead of who they should be, with the freedom to choose on their own. Teach them the principles to help them thrive, find joy and success, and let them set their own terms.
XO ~ Being a positive mom requires you to be eXtraOrdinary. Ex·traor·di·nary. \ik-ˈstrȯr-də-ˌner-ē\ is an adjective that means “very unusual : very different from what is normal or ordinary.” Your children’s self-acceptance will be sourced from yours. Do not conform to what others think, feel, or believe you ought to do… Be unapologetically YOU!
Yes! ~ Say YES more often (without becoming a yes-person). Take more risks. Embrace more opportunities. Focus on the “cans” and not the “can’ts.” Encourage critical thinking, creativity, and dreaming big. Say yes to their dreams, and carpe diem … they’ll only have one childhood.
Zeal~ Learn to radiate passion, power, and positivity by developing a millionaire mom mindset, so you can help inspire, lift, and motivate your family and everyone around you. Be a source of love and light… and leave a legacy!
What is your favorite letter? What would you add to my list? Who will you share this with today?
BE POSITIVE and You’ll BE Powerful,
Guest Writer: Elayna Fernandez ~ The Positive MOM
Elayna Fernandez, The Positive MOM, is a BestsellingAuthor, International Keynote Speaker, and award-winning guide, advocate, and mentor to MOMpreneurs worldwide. A former desolate, homeless, penniless single mom, Elayna Empowers, Equips, and Encourages moms of all ages and stages to BE POSITIVE and Discover, Live, Balance, Monetize, and Radiate their Passions so they can enjoy Success on their own terms without mommy guilt, stress, burnout, inertia, or overwhelm. Elayna is often featured prominently on national and international media, sharing her expertise about #Motherhood #Mompreneurship and #Motivation.
Elayna is passionate about Positive Parenting, Work-Life Integration, and Family Togetherness.