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Parenting Tip #3 Express Your Feelings

Let's be honest, we all have feelings.  It can be tricky when we are talking to our kids because there are times we have to Listen without Reacting which means we are not expressing our feelings.  That being said, we still need to model how to express our feelings appropriately to our kids.  It is important that they see us expressing and managing our feelings appropriately.  A simple, yet effective strategy is "I" Statements.  For example, "I feel happy when we spend time together," "I'm sad that my dog died," "I'm proud of you for doing well in school," etc.  I know these are simple examples but starting simply is a good start.  Our kids are observing us constantly & pick up our feelings.  It is important that we acknowledge what we are feeling.  There were times, I would come home from work overwhelmed with clients & paperwork & I would be visibly overwhelmed & upset.  During those moments, I tried to acknowledge that I was feeling overwhelmed & stressed.  Yes, I may have had tears in my eyes, but that's ok, they need to know we have feelings & everything will be ok. I also would reassure my step-kids that though I was overwhelmed & stressed, it was not them & I was happy to spend time with them.

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