I am just grateful for my lessons, and learning from everybody. The most important lesson is working on ourselves, but also not giving away too much of ourselves.
So many of our #children are under #stress- from feeling they are not good enough, because of social media. Minute by minute they get updates from friends they’ve only met once at a party and comparing themselves, feeling small. The message on social media is: I’m better looking. I’m a better dancer. I have a better body. I am smarter. I’m better at sports. The message being- you’re not good enough! #PanicAttacks and #anxiety attacks are rampant. And, not they are not being dramatic. It is real stress. They also see adults behaving badly- fighting over money, politics, etc. They also see tremendous randomness in this world- young parents dying, young children dying, natural disasters. How do you deal with all this? A few suggestions: 1- Children learn more from what you do than what you say, so your resilience—the way they watch you approach adversity—affects theirs. If you panic, they panic. If you stay calm and engage the situation, they learn from you and mimic you. Treat yourself first! If you have emotional pains that you ignore, you will pass infect your children with them. You need to learn to cope yourself. 2- Teach them that everyone has a unique gift. To find their gift and use it as their superpower to help others. They go from being helpless to being strong. 3- Teach them vulnerability is strength. It’s OK to fail. It’s good to fail. You learn very little through success but you learn everything when you fail. We all do and that gives us strength. 4- Tell them that “You are enough. Everything about you is more than enough. You are loved. You are cared for. Regardless of what anyone else is or does.” Do not compare your children with others. 5- People on social media only show their wins- never their losses. But we all wins and losses, good and bad- and that makes us special. When people love you- truly love you- they love you for everything, not for just the strengths but also for the “weaknesses.” If they have a pet, ask if they like the pet any less if it gets sick and breaks something by accident. That puts things in perspective. 6- Exercise. Not just competitive sports but exercise for fun and for relaxation! That takes out some of the hormonal imbalances of puberty. 7- Eat less sugar and caffeine and processed food. 8- Practice meditation. Mindfulness. Yoga. Being in nature without talking. Just being. Practice traveling to your favorite place that is safe in your head. Music is great! 9- Faith matters! God and religion help with a random world. There are things such as death of children for which we have no answers. I think of a Good God that cares and cries by our side. This world is not all there is. There are things we don’t understand. Faith matters. God cares. 10- Talk in detail about their fears. Don’t avoid subjects because they will know. They are much smarter than we are or we think they are. They need to learn to process their emotions. Talk with them. If you don’t know, get help. But, above all, be kind and loving and accepting of their thoughts and don’t be judgmental.