February makes me think of all the different kinds of love that exist, including and, importantly, self love! An understanding and appreciation of self love is something that we all want to teach our children. Like many lessons, they are often first learned at home. If we want our children to love themselves, we must model compassion to ourselves. Does that sound like another piece of parenting advice to add to your ever growing to-do list? It might be easier than you think!
♥︎ Honour your feelings and take what you need to heal & deal.
Example: acknowledge if you feel overwhelmed with the noise at home, set up an activity/a show/the iPad and take 10 minutes to do a mindfulness exercise or take a hot shower.
♥︎ Speak positively about yourself, especially in front of your child.
♥︎ If you make a mistake, acknowledge the thought/feeling/behaviour, but don’t label yourself.
Example: "I forgot my son’s snack, I am such a bad mom” vs. “I forgot my son’s snack and I am having the thought that I am a bad mom and I feel guilty”
♥︎ Model doing acts of kindness & creating opportunities to do acts of kindness together.
Helper: Grow & Co just released a Kindness Jar that allows you to do this and track your acts of kindness in a tangible & visual way!
♥︎ Practice a loving-kindness meditation when negative self-talk comes to visit. There are many available and taking the time to invest in this practice will lower stress for practitioners.
♥︎ This activity is an opportunity for your child to reflect on the aspects of their life that they “love”
♥︎ Invite the artist in your life to reflect on what “love” means? Sometimes it can be a tough word to conceptualize
♥︎ Invite the artist in your life to draw or write all the things that are dear to them. You can provide prompts as needed. Ideas might be family, friends, pets, things to do, places to go, and things they love about themselves.
♥︎ Use this as an opening for further conversation about what you love as well.
Click here for our free printable (PDF).