The Greatest Love You Show Your Children is the Love You Show Yourself

I can accurately say I am someone who is neck deep into exploring the crunchy side of parenting. With that brief introduction, you can imagine my excitement as I read about advancements of technology and science that it prove all my hippie-parenting and intuitive nudges correct. But what excites me most is our expanded knowledge of the energy at work in our lives. Here is why you should be excited too.

 

Neurons are Impacting Your Parenting

First, let’s talk a little science. We, all of us, and everything we perceive is energy.  Everything we touch, see, smell, hear, and feel is our energetic response to what we experience. In fact, these are neurological responses.  From the day we are born, our neurons are firing as we learn to perceive the world around us. One very specific kind of neuron is a mirroring neuron.  Mirror neurons actually mimic the neurons of others we come in contact with through our day. 

For example, if there is an angry guy in the coffee line and you find yourself feeling agitated and uneasy, it is because your mirror neurons are mimicking and copying his neurons. So, consciously or not, you captured some of his angry energy. These neurons help us protect ourselves from a very primitive standpoint.  But if we are conscious to this effect, we can tune in, recognize our feelings (or those of others) and be the master of our responses, emotions and energy.

As a mom, this is a huge factor in my success of keeping my family grounded and peaceful. Not only are my children always watching, but I remember that they are mirroring my neurons.  They rely on us for learning social cues of safety, survival, etiquette and satisfaction. This means children are actually experiencing their life through energetic cues and feelings much more than verbal lessons.  You see, “do as I say, not as I do” simply doesn’t work.

The Energy of Loving Yourself

When you begin to understand this much bigger role you play in your child’s life, you understand the importance of self-love and respect.  A parent who is dissatisfied, unloving of her own body and face, fails to uphold boundaries and demand respect, and generally has a negative outlook on life– this parent energetically teaches their child they can expect to be an adult with no sense of self, no respect, no satisfaction and no dreams.  None of us want our children to have that perspective.

I could give many examples of how this applies to parenting, but the bottom line is this. What are you doing to show your children you are worthy of the time you spend on yourself? We self-sacrifice for our children, but do we want them to grow to do the same?

So, where do you start?

  1. Make a list of 5 things you like about yourself.
  2. Rephrase them into compliments you would say to another person, even your child.
  3. Tape them to your bathroom mirror. It’s ok for your kids to see you working to give yourself the love you deserve.
  4. Once a day (at least), make eye contact with yourself in the mirror and tell yourself the compliments.
  5. Repeat this until you can do it with ease. For me it took a few weeks; the next step took a few months.
  6. Make new compliments, things you know you deserve to hear but struggle with accepting about yourself. These might be compliments that deny the negative self-talk in your mind.
  7. Repeat the same process of making eye contact in the mirror and complimenting yourself until it begins to feel more natural.

Intentional change often times comes with hard work.  You will need to show up for yourself, and you won’t regret it. The best part is, you will see it in your kids.  Their confidence and joy will multiply as they mirror all those self-accepting neurons!

The greatest love you can show your children is the love you show yourself. It is as simple and as complicated as that.


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Leah has lived on both coasts, spent much of her childhood in Colorado, but found the true meaning of home in Iowa. As a single mom of two girls, she wanted to show her daughters the power in setting our minds to our dreams and creating our reality, and so she began the Abundant Parent. When she isn’t writing, vlogging, running workshops, or bringing writing to kids with her nonprofit, she is mostly likely elbows deep in art supplies, cooking ingredients or mud and camping dust with her kids. She has been quitting coffee for the last three years; it’s going really well. Stay tuned.