Monthly Archives: November 2023
Ohhhhhhh! The childish love of the holidays always returns every year! It is the best time of the year, right?
The holidays can be wonderful…and stressful trying to create and match the holiday grandeur we have created in our minds. TV commercials, songs, and movies make us think of the perfect holiday experience which is impossible to bring into existence for who has real elves, reindeer, and an encounter with Santa in one’s own living room?
So we strive for the most we can do with what funds we have, the time we have, and the resources we have.
As our children age, their perfect holiday experience changes. Little ones seem to go with the flow much more easily than teens who are no doubt thinking of their friends and any special romantic interests. Family isn’t enough to fulfill the complete holiday experience created in a teen’s mind. It’s time to have an open discussion and to create a holiday plan with your teen to avoid:
- hurt feelings
- emotional outbursts
- withdrawn behaviors
- a sense that something was missing after the holidays are over
Think back to your holiday experience when you were a middle schooler or a high schooler. Was there someone you wanted to spend time with, but didn’t due to family obligations? Were there friends you wished you could see?
While family is sooooo important to the whole holiday experience, it’s not the whole experience to a teen. Just as we adults have fun with friends, it is important for teens to do the same. A plan is needed. A discussion (or two) is needed. Safety is priority. Agreement is mandatory.
- what would you like to experience this holiday season?
- are there any places you’d like to go?
- are there any different foods you’d like to eat?
- are there friends you’d like to include in your holiday season?
- do you have a special someone you’d like to include? Get a gift for?
- what is your favorite part of our past holiday experiences?
On the other side of this topic is the request for more help with holiday preparations. How can your teen help more? Play an important role? Be more involved since he/she is older?
Gather a couple of mugs and some cocoa and have a good discussion about your teen’s vision for the upcoming holiday experiences. This is honoring your teen and will establish a pattern of openness to discuss other topics as well.
PLEASE NOTE: this blog is for situations that are malleable and are deemed safe by you. If gossiping or bullying has reached unsafe levels, utilize community resources immediately: school authorities, police, mental health professionals, etc.
Gossiping. Bullying. Making others feel uncomfortable. Not allowing others to be fully authentic. Shaming others for being different.
It’s all the same subject: someone’s heart supply (love) is low. In fact, it is VERY low.
Let’s focus on telling “mean” things about someone to others aka gossiping, which is a form of bullying. In the spirit of keeping it simple, I’ll explain it this way: Gossiping is two subjects for two different sets of people: low heart supply vs. full heart supply and the person doing the gossiping vs. the person receiving the gossiping.
In one moment, a person feeling fine and having a good day, can become the receiver of gossiping and immediately be depleted of his or her heart supply. It’s a physical reaction as well. Fear takes over in a big way. Fear seemingly hits like a tall wall of cold energy. Not just for the receiver, but for all those surrounding the receiver, which could include family members, co-workers, and neighbors. It’s gripping. It can be terrifying.
Because of the intensity of the situation, let’s break it down into smaller, manageable parts so we can release the intense grip…because you always have options with everything. I mean this statement wholeheartedly. Even with gossiping or any form of bullying, we all have options with everything.
When someone is feeling good, feeling friendly, and feeling well, it is because they are filled with love, peace, joy, and wellbeing. All these state of being can all be lumped together in this category: high heart supply. When someone is feeling down, bad, angry, belligerent, and depressed, all these state of being can be lumped together in this category: low heart supply.
Knowing one’s heart supply is important personally and socially because when we feel peace, we give that out. When we feel angry, we give that out. When something triggers us, like a person cutting us off in traffic, our heart supply directly impacts how we respond to such a situation. IF we are able to stay in peace when someone cuts us off in traffic, we will simply notice the event without drama. If we are not able to stay in peace with our heart supply suddenly lowered or depleted, we will react to the impolite driving with profanity, finger gestures, or thoughts of revenge.
So, Life is all about listening to/being aware of our heart supply because there will never be a shortage of events that will trigger us into losing some of our heart supply. It takes training and a willingness to maintain a positive heart supply while Life happens around us.
In the case of gossiping with our children, they do not have as much Life experience and may not have the training and willingness to maintain a positive heart supply. This is when parents come in, who are hopefully NOT sucked into the gossiping drama, to stabilize the situation, remind of staying in positive heart supply, and provide solutions for the gossiping.
What about the gossiper? Remember this from the beginning of this blog: Gossiping is two subjects for two different sets of people: low heart supply vs. full heart supply and the person doing the gossiping vs. the person receiving the gossiping. So we have to discuss the gossiper with this topic. Who is helping him or her because it is obvious a very low heart supply is present, otherwise, the person would not be gossiping. Gossiping comes from a place of insecurity, lack of love, or low heart supply. Period.
Unless this lack/low supply level changes, the gossiping continues. Can a car low on fuel go very far? A car on empty stops. To resolve this situation, we must attend to the gossiper and raise his or her heart supply level. Period.
In all my Empowering Kids books, I explain a simple and very powerful parent-child strategy to solve any problem. It’s a co-creative style strategy. At the basic level, it is list creation of options. All of them. The longer the list of options, the better.
Then, together from the list, solutions that create a win-win effect are selected. There is much more to it. Especially in this book, Gritty Gossipers And What To Do About Them, I detail all the options available to address a gossiping situation.
So, parents…how full are your heart supplies? Do you have them full enough so that you can care for both the receiver of gossip and the gossiper? Do you have heart supplies full enough so that you can remain outside of the drama to assist both students into filling up their heart supplies? Do you have heart supplies full enough to live in the Land of Possibilities even when you see your child hurt?
I hope so because the only way to resolve a gossiping situation is to care for both students. Punishment doesn’t work. If someone is feeling off, weird, terrible, or angry inside (low heart supply), punishment, isolation, or shame won’t fix the problem at all, and has the potential to exacerbate it.
For a complete look at this subject, your empowering steps as the parent, and your possible solutions, read this book: Gritty Gossipers And What To Do About Them.