Before we know it, the next school year will be here! Before the frenzy of preparing for the first day, we want to remind parents and educators that they must take good care of themselves. Loving our children and our students requires that we first take care of ourselves in loving, unselfish ways. That’s the First Rule of Love and Logic!
Too frequently, we are led to believe that “good parents” and “good educators” should sacrifice their own needs to serve their children. While this sounds sweet and exactly how good parents and teachers should act, trying to accomplish it depletes our love reserves:
When our bucket is empty, we have nothing to give.
Love and Logic is not about being narcissistic or selfish, it’s about giving kids the gift of patient, encouraging, relaxed, and enthusiastic role models. Listed below are a few quick reminders:
Focus on what you can control.
A sure recipe for disaster involves trying to make kids happy, attempting to make them be good students, trying to make them get enough sleep, ensuring that they pick the right friends, etc. What we do have control over is what we model, they the types of limits we set, and how we respond when these limits are tested.
Set limits to avoid becoming a doormat.
Effective people set limits by describing how they will take care of themselves, not by telling others what they should do. For example:
- I do the extra things I do around here when I feel respected.
- I listen to students when their voices sound calm like mine.
- I __________when I don’t have to hear complaining or arguing.
Provide discipline when it’s convenient for you, not for the kids.
Avoid falling into the trap of trying to solve problems or provide immediate consequences. Take care of yourself by taking time and handling the problem when you have the time, energy, and support you need.
The Two Principles of Love and Logic can guide you toward fulfilling your role as an effective parent or educator. The first rule is that adults must set firm, loving limits using enforceable statements without showing anger, lecturing, or using threats. The second rule is that when a child causes a problem, the adult shows empathy through sadness and sorrow and then lovingly hands the problem and its consequences back to the child.
Our Love and Logic Magic When Kids Drain Your Energy audio is one Love and Logic technique that can help you take care of yourself when kids surprise you with unexpected and challenging situations.
Thanks for reading!
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