From my last blog I learned of a new website I would like to share with you all. It is energyparenting.com. This website relates to the subject I am writing on. I am still exploring the site myself but it looks great. If you haven't read my last blog, you may want to start there as this will be a continuation of it.
There are some things I would like to highlight as I continue reading through this book.
One is the list of items that help define, if you will, Inner Wealth.
I love this list. It describes things I want to be.
The list is long so I will just share a few....
"Inner wealth is a growing and deepening sense of:
Spirit, Optimism, Being lovable, Having much to give, Being open to, less afraid of and non-resistant to change, Being excited about the prospects of life and of living life fully, Being able to handle strong feelings, Being less likely to be consumed by anxiety, stress and depression, Being better connected to one's body - taking better care of it as a result, Wonder and awe, Trust and faith, Greatness, Meaning and purpose, Enjoyment and fulfillment, Holding great intentions, Loving life, self and others, Seeing what is true and wanting to live in truthfulness, Being present to self and others in the moment, Having the courage to create, express and adapt to whatever is next, Caring deeply for all life on the planet, Being thankful, appreciative, grateful and forgiving, Using excellent judgement and making intelligent decisions, Being respectful, Being reverent, Being willing to enjoy the journey into the unknown, Believing in one's greatness.
The list goes on, but these alone grab my attention.
Not only do I wish them for myself, but my heart longs for my children to grow up with these attributes. That is enough for me to read on. This list may sound like a "too good to be true" list.
Maybe it even makes us wonder what magic spell the book will say we need, but I believe that these are attainable and as a parent, I want to build up my son to find joy, hope and strength in the world he is a part of.
Glasser writes that building inner wealth in our children requires that:
1. We find these qualities of inner wealth in what they do, in what they don't do and in their intentions, hopes and successes, and even their failures.
2. We do not inadvertently energize poor choices by giving relationship and energy in response to those choices.
3. We strive to have a laser-like focus on any steps the child takes towards success.
4. We remain strict. There is always a consequence for any rule broken - along with a loving and simple way to move on to the next NOW of success, which amounts to a built in way of freely offering forgiveness.
5. We give consequences for poor choices, even while having complete faith in the child's ability to do better and quickly finding reason to justify that faith.
Glasser explains that cultivating inner wealth in our children requires that we learn to see and colorfully acknowledge successes. I want to share two examples he uses that contribute to our intention of choosing to see greatness and creating greatness.
The first example is that of Shamu. Yes, the wonderful performing Shamu.
Do you know how they get Shamu to jump so high over that rope? They create success. They begin by putting the rope on the bottom of Shamu's tank. Every time Shamu happens to swim over the rope, Shamu gets a reward. It doesn't take Shamu long to figure it out. The trainers then raise the rope just a little in the tank and continue the rewards. Soon enough, the trainers can raise the rope above the tank and Shamu knows that when he/she jumps over that rope, reward comes. The trainers didn't try to teach Shamu to jump over the rope out of the water right away. They created success for Shamu, leading Shamu on a path for greatness. Glasser uses this illustration to emphasize the importance for us to create success for our children, not wait to catch them doing good.
Another illustration Glasser uses is that of video games.
He is not necessarily promoting video games, instead he believes the technique behind video games is one that we can learn from. Have you ever watched a child play a video game? How captivated and focused they are? Even if they are high energy child? Glasser comments that games consume the attention of even very difficult children because their lives make total sense while they are engaged in the game. These games are clear and predictable. The child knows what to expect. There are clear goals, clear rules, clear consequences and opportunities to get right back in the game. Throughout the game the child encounters rewards for their successes. They get extra points, there are bells and whistles, they are constantly rewarded for their efforts. Consequences are straight forward and clear. There is not much energy given to consequences. When they break a rule, the consequence happens and then they move on. This same relationship exists in our interactions with our children. If we are giving the rewards when there is success and clear, non energized consequences, the child can't wait to have access to success again.
These two examples really spoke to me, that is why I wanted to share them with you. I am always interested in your thoughts as well. Feel free to share them. I hope my thoughts about this book are interesting you. I'll be back with more as I continue reading.
I will end this blog with just some of the words that Glasser suggests using as we interact with our children. Words that go beyond "thank you" or "good job". They have been helpful for me as I am interacting with my kids.
I find that I say "thank you" and "good job" so much.
I am enjoying commenting on his specific attributes. It constantly reminds me just how great these kids of mine are. What a blessing it is to be their mom.
Tell children that they are... A joy, A hard worker, A leader, A scientist, Admirable, Appreciative, Attentive, Being inspiring, Being wise, Brave, Choosing what's important, Compassionate, Courageous, Courteous, Easy to like, Flashing a contagious smile, Faithful, Generous, Gracious, Honorable, Intelligent, Kind, Loving, Making great choices, Patient, Passionate, Respectful, Responsible, Strong on the inside, Trustworthy, Thoughtful, Using a pleasant voice, Using your great mind, Vibrant... and these really are just a few from Glasser's list.