Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall, Your Child is Watching Good, Bad and ALL

By Blog Director: Cristina Coreas 

Five Steps to Reflect a Positive Impact

Before we had our daughter Mila, Ken and I had been told that she would take after the best and worst of us.  I cringed at the thought of my daughter being as stubborn as I, or that she might pick up some of the annoying habits of either one of us.  And after three years, I think it’s safe to say that the time has definitely come; and even though this little one is developing a personality of her own growing into her own skin, I can’t help but recognize how much she DOES say something I might say, or does something that Ken or I do.  For example, when she is playing with her dolls she might tell them, “ Do you want a time out?” or “Be nice to the other baby ok, and SHARE!”  or sometimes she might do something in particular and I think to myself, “That’s little Ken coming out right now…”  or oh wait, “ Is that me? Do I do that?” and I have been reflecting on how much of an impact I am on this little life on a day to day basis and to be honest, some times that is kind of an intimidating feeling to me; but at the same time I think of it as a learning and growing opportunity.  It forces me to think I need to be the woman I desire HER to become.  Because you see, you and I are mirrors to our children, like it or not. Our children can reflect what they see modeled at home. Being aware of the type of impact that we are to our children can force us to become better people, and in turn teach our children to become even more amazing then they are now.  So how can we do this?

1. Be reflective.  

No one is perfect and we don’t all magically have access to the best qualities in the world for our children once we become parents. I wish. But you should take a step and THINK about what those three or four qualities are that you want your child to have or take from you.   Do you want them to learn to be respectful to others? to have manners?  be leaders, or positive impacts on others?  Maybe you want to teach them to be aware of healthy eating and exercise habits? Have good hygiene? Or how to develop a love for learning? Maybe confidence is what you desire them to have?  Whatever the case may be and whether or not you are being a reflection of those qualities YET…think of those three or four qualities, write them down, and take step #2.

2. Actions Speak louder than words.

We have all heard this saying and I have to say it is quite true.  We have to be proactive.  It is great to TELL our children, “ Remember to say please and thank you,” but are you practicing it?  “It is not polite to yell at others.”  But are you doing that?  “ It is great to read books!” but are you going to the library or sitting on the couch reading?  Like I said, telling our kids these things is obviously important, but actually setting the example is even more impactful. 

I can recall a recent time where I reflected on this and how I would always tell Mila, “ Mila, you say, “May I please have the toy, not can I…”  and in the beginning of this teaching process she always said “ Mommy, may I…” But as time went on I noticed her changing “may” to “can” and I thought, why is she doing this?  Well was I asking Ken, or any other person for that matter in that form? No. And I know that sounds like a basic and possibly insignificant example to some,  but it goes to show you that they pick up on even the smallest and insignificant things.  Another example is the way I would react to Ken when I was annoyed with him or the way he would react towards me.  We both have the Super BAD habit of huffing when we are annoyed with a silly request from one another.  And guess who began to mimic that? Yep.  But now that I see her doing that it is definitely something I see I have to work on because I don’t want her to think it is ok to react that way when someone is talking to her or vice versa.  

3. Talk about it.

 Some of the things that I want my daughter to be are strong, confident, and kind, and she isn’t always going to be around me when I am demonstrating these types of behaviors. So my plan is to simply take the time to talk to her about it when I do them and I encourage you to do the same.  Maybe on your car ride home, or a moment when you feel it is appropriate for you to share.  Talk about things. 

“I want to share something I did at work today to show my confidence and it made mommy feel great!”  or “You know, I noticed someone at the park today demonstrate a lot of inner strength…”  It can even be something you noticed them do that demonstrates the type of behavior you want to reinforce, “I really like how you shared your toys with your cousins today Mila.” They might not even have realized it until you pointed it out.  

And F.Y.I., the behaviors you want them to achieve don’t have to necessarily be the ones you are the best at.  One of the behaviors I struggle with the most is probably confidence and one that I want to improve so that my daughter can be confident.  Setting a goal that I want to share a personal story once a week on how I demonstrated confidence to my daughter will kind of force me to be proactive on making a change on something that I need to work on myself and in turn encourage her to be the same. It’s a win, win!  

4. Use your mistakes as teaching moments.

 Like I mentioned before, no one is perfect. Although I know a couple of people that like to think they are, ha! We shouldn’t have to walk on eggshells and display a mold of perfection around our children because obviously we know that is impossible. We leave that one to God.  I think its great to be real and raw in front of our kids. To show them that mommy and daddy make mistakes too and that mommy and daddy can learn from those mistakes.  So when you yell out loud or are rude or didn’t demonstrate the most keen behavior in front of your child, take the time to talk about how you could have reacted differently or tell them/ show them the consequences to your actions.  They need to realize that we all have struggles and that we all have room to grow, because we ALL do.

5. Don’t feel the weight is all on you.

 Our kids aren’t only going to learn from us.  They will learn from peers, other adults, their teachers, their coaches, etc.  So we shouldn’t feel the need to have to cover every great characteristic out there ourselves.  Maybe your significant other has strengths your child will pick up from, or you have a friend that is really great at something and they will learn from them too.  Consider the people your child is around.  Are their friends a positive influence? Get to know them.  Are there others who have strengths that you might not be so great at that they can pick up from? Don’t feel pressure to become the only impact; there will be others in their lives that they will learn from too.  Just be aware of who those people are.  

The point of this is article is to become aware, become proactive, and most importantly become consistent with your actions.  Being a parent is not an easy task but it is a very rewarding one. Help your child become a positive reflection, and who knows they might show you a thing or two as well. Oh wait, that’s my next blog! Lol

Leave A Reply (No comments so far)

No comments yet

my site

Join the Village

Simply Enter your info above to know what's happening in your village, get updates, Newsletters, and SO much More to support you!

Your privacy is SAFE with us and will never be sold, rented, or released to anyone - EVER!

Confessions of a Full Time Mom Book Cover
Please click! A visit a day boosts my blog ranking at Top Mommy Blogs - The Best Mommy Blog Directory Ever!
30SM Contributor Badge Rectangle
iTunes Podcast Full Time Mom

Click for a message from KLOVE’s Amanda Carroll