Written by: Sarah Maconachie, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Our mindset controls around 96-98% of everything we do – I know, it’s a crazy amount and it basically means that we work on Autopilot and live our lives in a very habitual way. As the Director of a Mindset Consultancy – the best thing I have learnt is how to understand my children better and how my behaviours/actions are shaping them and their futures.
The way we think, behave and act is very much determined by our belief system and the environment we were raised ourselves. Our paradigms and belief systems are created by our parents, their parents and those that we were surrounded by when growing up.
So how often do you think about what it is that you are passing on to your own Children? Do you ever reflect on how you were raised and think, I want to do that differently? It’s great to make changes and evolve as society does, but being consciously aware of how we change those behaviours isn’t as easy as we think.
What to think about around Children
1. Do you want your children to be risk-takers?
Do you ever find yourself shouting “Careful Careful Careful” at your children? As a mother of 3 with two of them being very adventurous 2-year-old twins, I want to shout out “be careful” approximately every 30 seconds. Now, I obviously just want my children to be safe and to not hurt themselves or others, but in reality, I am creating a paradigm around them taking risks.
If they are constantly being told to be careful (or similar), they are likely to grow up being cautious, risk-averse and have a fear of pushing themselves. If I bite my tongue, close my eyes, and try to look away in hope that they are okay when I look back, I am allowing them to take risks, learn by experience and push themselves out of their comfort Zone. There is no right or wrong with this, ideally, we want a balance of them both. Being mindful of when and how we use boundaries and caution with our children can really shape the way they live their lives, try to be selective when you feel it may be okay for them to take a bit of a risk, and when you know that situation is dangerous, and they need to learn boundaries.
2. Hold on – I’m not sure if we should talk about this…
Try to be mindful of what you are communicating around your children, this is important across all topics, but I will use money as an example. In a world where everyone seems to be struggling with inflation and the rising of costs in everyday expenses, think about what you are talking about and saying to your children. If we are frequently saying “That’s way to expensive, we can’t afford it, we are broke, we could never have that, it costs too much” you are creating a limited money paradigm in your children. As they grow up, you are at risk of them being conscious about money, having a boundary around their self-worth and this will likely limit their own earnings as they get older. Keep the conversations positive around children and what their possibilities are.
3. Love and affection
The way we show love and affection to our children and spouses really sets them up for the way they are going to form relationships themselves. If we are constantly showing love and affection, that behaviour will become “normal” to them, and they will often replicate this in their own relationships as they are growing up.
4. We can or we Can’t…
Do you find yourself swaying towards the ideas that you can, or you can’t? I have always had the attitude that I can do anything I set my mind to and have achieved so much in my life because of it. When I look back my parents would always support me in my wild decisions, even if they were probably rolling their eye’s thinking I am being ridiculous at the time, they never said you can’t or you won’t be able to do that.
Think about whether you are encouraging your children to have a can-do attitude or are you questioning whether things can be achieved and constantly saying you “can’t do that”. Of course, we need boundaries, but having an attitude that allows us to strive for what we want is always going to be more likely to get us there.
When I was pregnant with my Twins all I seemed to hear was “you won’t be able to do this, you won’t be able to do that” and It was a real eye opener to me how many people have the view that they “can’t” rather than they “Can”; After all, when people put their views upon you, it’s a direct reflection of what they think they are capable of, not a reflection on you and your capabilities. I am extremely conscious with my children and making sure I encourage them that they can do anything (within reason – of course) and not reflect my own limitations onto them.
5. Are you happy?
I’m not sure what the equivalent is of the phrase “happy wife, happy life” with regards to parents but I’m sure there would be one. When we are happy, driven and feel like we have purpose, we are MUCH better parents. I have experienced this myself. My children are often a complete replica of my emotions and seem to reflect exactly how I am feeling in their behaviour. It is hard to prioritise yourself when you are a parent, but try to do things you love, follow your passions, take time for yourself, and spend time with your children feeling positive and energised. They are going to be so much happier for it themselves.
We have complete control over what we are instilling into your children, so think about how you want them to think and behave and start to think and behave like that yourself. This is the best way for them to learn those behaviours and live a successful life. If you think you are really struggling with some of the areas covered, it may be time to start shifting your own mindset. Not only will it create a happier life for you, but it will create more growth and opportunity for your children too.
Sarah Maconachie, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Sarah Maconachie is the founder of Work Hard Parent Hard. As the proud mother of 3 young children, Sarah has been on an incredible mindset journey and has discovered the importance of understand our mind to create profound results and create a life that we love. She shares her wisdom in this space by Coaching Parents to regain their purpose and create a life of balance between working/ staying home and being a great parent. Sarah is the Author of 2 books “Working Mothers Inspiring Others” and “Working Dads and Balancing Acts”. You can purchase her books here and learn more about her programs on her website.