Reframing How We Think

In high school I had an awesome youth leader and now she is a mom…a mom with a blog. It is usually about parenting, but I sometimes pop over to read her latest post.  In April, she posted “Bossypants Vs. Being a Leader – Reframing How We Think About Our Kids.”  (You should click on the link and read it.)  Here is how it ended:

Then together we worked on finding the good aspect of those “negative” traits – 
Bossy = Leader, Determined
Whiny = can be a great Advocate for Themselves
Messy = these children are usually very Creative
Hyper / Busy = Spirited, Love for life and learning

You get the idea – so the whole process leads to a reframing of how we think about our children and their temperament traits that drive us nuts at times.  

  • My oldest is a whiner at times with a spirit that is almost too gentle.  He, however, is SO compassionate and empathetic that I need to not “wish away” those parts of who he is just for a tougher kid.
  • My oldest daughter has a temper and a fire in her eyes much of the time.  She is also so determined to finish / learn anything she sets her mind to.  That determination will serve her well!
  • My third born is intense.  Everything about him is intense, but that child has a love for life and a desire to explore that I would never change.
  • And my baby, who is now two, is definitely willing to make sure her voice is heard.  Sometimes it is a bit draining to have her tug on my pants and ask for milk 15 times in a row, but her persistence is a good thing!

When I read this it really hit home.  I know she was talking about her kids, but I don’t have any kids and I applied it to myself.  How often do I see the negative side of things, especially in myself or what is happening around me?!?

Not long ago, I was visiting with a friend in Chicago and I was sharing how bad I was feeling about my jobless situation.  She, in a very blunt kind of way, told me to stop being so negative.  Then she preceded to tell me how she saw things.  It was incredible for me to see how someone could see the same situation so completely differently from me.

It is so easy for me to get in the habit of focusing on the negative side of things.  The blog post and my friend served such good reminders that I choose to see things in a certain way, but there is another side to the situation, a different angle to see.

So…here is my challenge to myself and to you.  Try to reframe your thinking.  For me, right now, that means reframing how I feel about myself and where I am in my life.  Do you need reframe your thinking about some thing or someone?

 

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