As mamas who are spread thin, trying to squeeze so much out of every day, I think we should take this list to heart. This is directed at the mama side of us. I need to work on every single one. I hate that I can't give credit to who wrote this, as I've had it tacked on my bulletin board for a couple of years and I didn't down the author.
- Say yes to more: to spending time and doing things together.
- Say no more: to "I want," "I need," "Everyone has it," and "Everyone does it." If nothing else, say no to a television in a child's room.
- Worry less: about all the highly sensationalized menaces that exist out there, lurking in wait for you and your children. The overwhelming odds are with you to come through the year just fine (but drive carefully – without the cell phone).
- Listen more to your children and talk at them less: Ask "What do you think?" "What are you feeling?" "Tell me about it" and "what would you do?"
- Explain a little more, negotiate a little less: Our kids deserve to know the thinking behind our decisions and expectations, but they should not expect to be equal partners at the bargaining table. We are the parents.
- Read a little more: to your child, with your child, in front of your child – books, magazines, newspapers, notes.
- Write a little more: notes of love, recognition, encouragement, responsibility, daily appreciation of life.
- Expect a little more: good behavior, responsibility, manners, kindness, and all the goodness that lies within our children.
- Expect a little less: constant scheduling and enrichment-filled days. Children need a lot of slow to grow.
- Connect more: to family, friends, the community, those who are less fortunate, and the natural world.
And remember: Give yourself credit every time you make small steps and do the right thing!