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Advice Body Language Branding Capital Strategy Women In Business

How to Look Good on a Budget: Recession-Proofing Your Appearance

When times are tough, it’s easy to let our appearance slide. After all, who has the time or money to invest in expensive clothes and grooming products? However, caring about your appearance, especially when money is tight, can have a big impact on your personal and professional success. In this article, we’ll explore some tips and strategies for recession-proofing your look and enhancing your personal style, even on a budget.

 

Invest in high-quality basics

When it comes to building a wardrobe on a budget, it’s important to focus on high-quality basics that will stand the test of time. These might include items like a well-fitted blazer, classic jeans (a dark wash is always best), and versatile shoes. While these items may require a higher upfront cost, they will pay off in the long run by lasting for years and allowing you to mix and match them with different outfits. You should spend 80% of your wardrobe budget on your basics.

 

Accessorize strategically

Accessories are a budget-friendly way to add interest and style to your outfits. Look for accessories like scarves, pocket squares, jewelry, belts, and hats that can be used to change up your look without breaking the bank. By adding a pop of color or texture to your outfit with a well-chosen accessory, you can elevate your style and create a more polished and put-together look.

 

Prioritize fit

One of the most important factors in looking good on a budget is finding clothes that fit well. Clothes that are too big or too small can make you look sloppy and unprofessional, while clothes that fit well can enhance your best features and make you look more polished and put-together. Look for clothes that flatter your body shape and accentuate your best features, and don’t be afraid to have them tailored if needed. This is the number one mistake that can cheapen your look if you don’t pay attention to it.

 

Focus on grooming

Good grooming habits can go a long way in enhancing your appearance and making you feel more confident. This includes basics like regular haircuts, good hygiene, and clean nails. If you wear makeup, focus on simple, natural looks that enhance your features without breaking the bank. By taking care of your grooming needs and presenting a clean, polished appearance, you can feel more confident and put-together, even on a tight budget.

 

Care about your appearance

Finally, it’s important to care about your appearance, even when money is tight. How you present yourself can have a big impact on how others perceive you and the opportunities that come your way. By taking care of your appearance and presenting yourself in a professional and polished manner, you can position yourself for success even during tough economic times. Remember, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to look and feel your best. With a little creativity and effort, you can recession-proof your look and enhance your personal style, even on a budget.

 

In conclusion, recession-proofing your look requires a combination of strategic shopping, good grooming habits, and a commitment to presenting yourself in the best possible light. By investing in high-quality basics, accessorizing strategically, prioritizing fit, focusing on grooming, and caring about your appearance, you can look and feel your best even on a tight budget. So go ahead and rock that budget-friendly outfit with confidence, knowing that you’re presenting your best self to the world.

 

If you’re looking for expert guidance on how to recession-proof your personal brand and enhance your appearance, consider working with Sheila Anderson, The Image DesignerÔ. With years of experience in the branding and image consulting industry, Sheila can provide personalized advice and strategies for success that align with your unique goals and budget.

 

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, freelancer, or corporate professional, building a strong personal brand and enhancing your appearance can help you stand out from the competition and position yourself for success, even during tough economic times. So don’t wait – contact Sheila Anderson today to learn more about how she can help you recession-proof your personal brand and take your career or business to the next level.

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Advice Body Language Growth Management

THE ART OF CONCENTRATION: HOW TO DEEPEN YOUR FOCUS AND ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS

Low productivity is a focus problem.

If you keep feeding your distractions, you can’t make real progress. If you are trapped in a wealth of online distractions, you must start thinking about a different approach to work.

Focus, a valuable commodity for getting real work done, is increasingly becoming a lost art.

If you’re trying to be more productive, don’t analyze how you spend your time. Pay attention to what consumes your attention.

If how you work is not working, design a different system that makes progress possible every day, increasing efficiency and output.

Your present life and career total everything you’ve focused on. If you are unhappy with your productive life, change the system that drives it.

New tools and technology are meant to help us work better, faster, and more intelligently, but they often distract us.

Many productivity apps are meant to improve our lives, but they get in the way of deep and accurate work.

You can’t stop responding to those notifications. The zero-email mindset is a productivity trap that keeps you constantly responding to emails.

How can you get real work done when you can’t stop reacting to almost every notification?

“Feed a cold and starve a fever.

To gain productivity, feed your focus and starve your distractions.”

“It’s not that I’m so smart; it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” Albert Einstein once said.

Many people have a real plan to get important stuff done — they are not necessarily lazy and don’t know how to stop feeding their distractions.

Attention distraction is one of the biggest obstacles to getting real done. “Focus is the art of knowing what to ignore.

People who cultivate their ability to concentrate without distraction will thrive:

To feed your focus, start separating your urgent work from essential tasks. And most importantly, identify your distractions and how they starve your focus. Knowing your distractions can help you understand how you spend your attention.

For every focused work you want to do, identify the potential distractions, and stop them before you get in the focus zone.

Deep workers often find that notifications, no matter how important the message, takes their deep focus away from the task, and it takes twice as long to get back to focus mode again.

To produce at your peak level, you need to work for extended periods with total concentration on a single task free from distraction. 

To feed your focus, create healthy work boundaries that allow you to concentrate on essential tasks fully. Build a system that starves distractions. Create intentional constraints that will enable you to assume focus mode.

When you’re ‘on,’ be entirely on — use headphones, and when possible, hide your phone, turn it upside down, or block notifications. Block internal and external distractions.

The ability to focus for about 30/40/60 minutes is the only difference between truly productive people and those who struggle to get things done.

Measure your work and find the most suitable focused time that works for you. Your degree of focus determines how fast you make progress.

Structure your day in chunks of focused work to make in-depth work sessions work. Start your day with intention. What is the one thing you have to accomplish today? Start your focused sessions with that task.

Set up your environment to support your focus mode. And plan purposeful breaks in-between deep work sessions. (Pomodoro method)

One final insight about prioritizing involves getting disciplined about what you don’t put on the stage. This means not thinking when you don’t have to, becoming disciplined about not paying attention to non-urgent tasks unless, or until, it’s genuinely essential that you do,

Deep work is a habit and working for long stretches at a time takes time to develop. You can start today. Do more focused work daily, and it will become a habit that helps you get real work done weekly. Better routines are the personal habits of highly efficient people.

What do you do to become more productive?

 

For more Healthy Money Tips Listen to our PodCast “Money 911”

Meet with Kris Miller – Financial Fitness Strategy Sessions

https://healthymoneyhappylife.com/

Kris@HealthyMoneyHappyLIfe.com

(951) 926-4158

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Body Language Branding Capital Networking Sales

EMPOWER YOUR WORKFORCE: PROMOTE INFORMED FINANCIAL DECISIONS, SAVING HABITS, AND WORKPLACE EDUCATION

Many people may lack the basic math skills and financial know-how to make decisions. One of my favorite books, which I reread from time to time, is the 1988 book Innumeracy by John Paulos; he coined the book’s title from people being slow in math as compared to illiterate. Math and money are very different, and learning the differences is crucial to building wealth securely.

Even though many adults across generations were functioning with medium levels of financial literacy, too many workers today possess low levels of Personal Financial Proficiency (PFP) and have difficulty applying financial decision-making skills to real-life situations.   

Here are a few general questions about everyday financial situations that stumped so many:

  • Determining wages and take-home pay, 
  • Questions about investment types, risk, and return, 
  • Understanding specific risk economic outcomes risk
  • Understanding that 401(k) are not pensions

This is where Americans exhibit the lowest scores, with less than one-third answering correctly.

Lack of financial understanding affects all ages and socioeconomic levels. The result is those who fall into the limited PFP category, even though financially literate, may not manage their financial resources effectively and may feel intimidated by retirement, budgeting, tax planning, and Social Security topics.

One way to help everyone become more confident about their personal finances is by building a solid foundation with Financial Proficiency. 

Financial literacy dark secret

People with higher levels of financial literacy “fluency bias.” are more likely to build weak foundations to support their financial houses. Sadly, in this case, a little knowledge is dangerous and prevents many from developing a strategy that works and won’t leave you in a pickle as you get to retirement age.

For more Healthy Money Tips Listen to our PodCast “Money 911”

Sign up for a Financial Fitness Strategy Session:  Meet with Kris Miller – Financial Fitness Strategy Sessions

You can reach me at Kris@HealthyMoneyHappyLIfe.com, (951) 926-4158

 

Categories
Body Language Parenting Skills Women In Business

Compassionate Communication: A Primer on Conscious Parenting Language

With President’s Weekend in my home country, the United States, upon us, I wanted to touch on communication. Whether you’re leading a household or a country, great leadership stems from great communication.

There’s a verse in the Bible that states, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” This proverb encapsulates what we already know to be true: words hold a lot of weight. What we say—and how we say it—can have an enormous effect on those around us.

At the Conscious Parenting Revolution, one of our core teachings is effective and compassionate communication. We repair family relationships by teaching parents and children methods and tools for listening with love and speaking from the heart.

Our conscious parenting vocabulary revolves around supportive communication. The goal of this approach is to build others up and never tear them down no matter what situation you find yourself in—calm or stressful, charged or joyful.

If you often find yourself at a loss for words when communicating with your children, here is some basic conscious parenting language to use for effective, life-giving communication.

Compassionate Communication: A Primer on Conscious Parenting Language

Situation: You’re caught in an argument or a tense circumstance

CPR Language: Instead of “You always” or “You never,” say “It seems/feels.” 

When you find yourself at what could be the start of a heated argument with your child, take a moment to step back and reframe what you’re about to say.

Instead of the usual accusatory, “You never clean your room,” try something less aggressive like, “It seems that you’re having a hard time keeping your room tidy.”

Words like “never” and “always” put your child in defensive mode, which could result in them shutting you out. Rephrase your words so your kid feels encouraged to open up and tell you the true root of the problem.

Situation: A celebratory occasion, such as your child receiving high grades at school

CPR Language: Instead of, “You’re so smart,” say, “Congratulations! I admire how hard you worked on that!” 

One of the communication methods we teach is using acknowledgement instead of praise.

Praising a child for their intelligence or outward appearance teaches them to measure their self-worth based on superficial traits and external factors.

Acknowledgement, on the other hand, allows a child to connect to their own sense of accomplishment. It helps them become self-aware of their competencies and tap into how they feel about themselves. 

Situation: Your child exhibited bad behavior

CPR Language: Instead of, “As punishment you’ll…,” say, “Can you tell me what made you act/react in this way?”

Simply punishing bad behavior never addresses the root of the problem. Rather than resorting to punishment, ask your child why they acted a certain way.

Was there a misunderstanding? Did they feel unheard, unseen, hungry, sad, or some other negative emotion? Once your child explains what caused their behavior, work on finding a solution together.

Situation: Describing your kid’s behavior

CPR Language: Instead of, “You’re a mess,” say, “You made a mess.”

There’s a big difference between telling your child their behavior was irresponsible and making them feel like they are irresponsible.

Your words have a major impact on your children! So use non-blameful descriptions of their behavior and avoid labeling them in a negative way that can undermine their self-confidence or self-love.

Situation: You lost your temper/lashed out/made a mistake

CPR Language: “I’m sorry.”

Traditional parenting says that parents should never apologize to their children. But our kids are human, too, and they deserve an apology when we’re in the wrong.

Saying the words, “I’m sorry,” lets your kid know that their parent is, in fact, human. It also sets you both on a path of mending and healing.

Words have the power to bring comfort and devastation, joy and pain. Let’s do our best to communicate with our children with the love and compassion they deserve.

Love and Blessings,

Katherine

P.S. Want a chance to practice your new Conscious Parenting vocabulary? Join our private Facebook group to connect with like-minded parents around the world. We run live impromptu Tips for Parents in that private facebook group, join and request to be alerted when we go live and you can ask your individual questions.

 

 

Categories
Body Language Growth Leadership Negotiations Parenting

Are You Listening to Your Child’s Side of the Story?

Stop me if this scenario sounds familiar:

You’re minding your own business when suddenly the phone rings.

The person on the other end of the line—perhaps a teacher or a camp counselor—has called to inform you that your child is acting out.

Your face flushes with shame and humiliation and embarrassment. You assume their account must be accurate.

When our children display inappropriate behavior in public (getting into a fight at soccer practice or throwing a toy at a daycare teacher), our first impulse is often to apologize on their behalf, then shamefully slink away to reprimand or punish them at home.

How often do you stop and ask for your child’s side of the story?

Anger and Shame Prevent Parents from Listening to Their Kids

I remember a time when I was on my way to my daughter Pia’s Girl Scout camp.

There had been a fight with another girl in which Pia allegedly shoved her. To punish Pia, the camp counselor put her in “detention” in one of the cottages.

I drove to the campground upset and concerned.

I know my daughter, and she doesn’t just push people out of nowhere.

What was Pia’s unheard side of the story? How was she managing her feelings about being isolated, made to think she was the “bad one”?

I wondered what could have been the catalyst in order for this response to be evoked.

As soon as I saw Pia, upset and sitting alone, I knew my gut feeling had been spot on.

When I asked  “Honey, what happened?” between her tears she said, “I just want to go, I just want to go!”

Even though she just wanted to get out of there, I knew that if we did, she would leave with her tail between her legs.

Her side of the story would never be acknowledged or understood,  At such a young age, she would already begin to develop a bad reputation.

This is when I used what we call the protective use of force.

I said, “I won’t let you develop a negative reputation, and I know your side of the situation and your perspective has not been heard or understood. I will take you home, but we can’t leave until your side is understood too.”

“Mom, she was bullying me and calling me names in front of all the other girls. I was so embarrassed and humiliated, and I asked her over and over again to stop calling me names. But she wouldn’t stop bullying me!” Pia explained between her big sobs.

“I didn’t know what else to do and so I swung my arm out and said stop it! Then I was the one who got in trouble!!” My daughter sobbed and sobbed. She was so confused about what she should have done when someone was bullying her.

You can imagine what happened next.

I talked to the camp counselor (who didn’t think of asking my daughter her side of the story!) and facilitated a reconciliation between the two girls.

Needless to say, Pia didn’t need to be put into detention.

I learned a valuable life lesson that day: there are two sides to every story.

If I had barged into the scene angry and humiliated, Pia would have felt attacked and more misunderstood and she wouldn’t have trusted me enough to tell me what really happened.

That’s not to say that every time your child does something “wrong” it will be a misunderstanding or an honest mistake.

But there will be an unmet need causing their behavior.

If you can get their side of the story, you’ll find ways to resolve the situation and move forward.

As parents, it’s our duty to put aside our own feelings of shame about what other people might think and always, always listen to our children.

Love and Blessings,

Katherine

P.S. The wise Brené Brown says “shame cannot survive being spoken.” If you’ve got shame or guilt you need to unburden, check out our private Facebook group to find a safe environment of other parents ready to support you.

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Body Language

Why Being Your Child’s Best Friend Doesn’t Work

Has your home turned into a warzone? For many parents, after a long year of being stuck indoors—sharing the same space for work, school, home, and recreation—the pressure may have built to a boiling point. Add in the normal worry and stress many families feel on a day-to-day basis, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.

When a disagreement hits the boiling point, things get ugly. There’s screaming, crying, swearing . . . and that’s just the parents. And after it’s all over, we often feel ashamed and regretful. It’s only then that we remember we’re supposed to be the adults in the room.

That “out of control” feeling isn’t your fault. In the moment, when your child’s just done something that drives you nuts, your emotions get the best of you. But when you’re running hot, you don’t act like the parent you want to be. And that’s because you may not have the right tools to be able to respond instead of react.

First, take a breath. Find some compassion for yourself, and forgive yourself for that behavior you’re not proud of. None of us are perfect. When you show kindness to yourself, you model that kindness for your children, too.

Then, follow this 3-Step ACTion Plan next time you find a discussion going south. It can help you prevent a difficult situation from accelerating into a full-fledged meltdown.

1. Acknowledge your kid’s feelings and needs.

Children often have a hard time naming the emotions that they’re feeling. Ask them leading and compassionate questions. If your kids are fighting over a toy, for example, ask: “Are you feeling angry that your sister took your toy without permission?” Their answer will help you understand their response and give clues about how to remedy the situation.

2. Communicate.
Once you validate their feelings and identify the unmet needs that drive the feeling, check in with them to be sure they feel understood before switching to wanting to share your perspective and expecting them to hear you. Failing to do this may result in them tuning you out!  We all want to turn it into a teachable moment and explain why certain behaviors are not acceptable with more depth than “Because I said so.” Knowing that the teachable moment is NOT at the time of the issue is VERY important. It is okay to explain to your child that hitting their sibling is hurtful and doesn’t fix the problem of the swiped toy—or resolve the anger they’re feeling.  AND you get that it would really help them to practice some skills before these kinds of flashpoints occur so that there is more choice for them to respond differently. My experience is that the key is to teach the skills for self-regulation in heated situations more than lecturing them; most kids know already that hitting isn’t okay. The issue is more about tools for impulse control when they are experiencing high emotion.

3. Target another option.

Ask your child to help identify a solution to the problem at hand. Maybe your children can agree to take turns sharing a favorite toy. If you catch your teenager sneaking out to meet their friends, maybe you help them find a safe space for a socially distant hangout instead of sending them straight to their room. The goal is to build your child’s ability to objectively problem-solve and to let them know that the two of you are on the same team. Solo problem-solving is rarely effective. Collaboration sets the tone for your child to feel that you’re invested in them meeting their needs and want to find a solution that meets your needs too—but not at their expense of getting to meet theirs.

Learning to defuse disagreements is challenging, and it requires commitment and effort to overcome your own emotional response. But the 3-Step ACTion plan can help both parents and children learn to treat each other with love and respect.

If you’re looking for more tips on maintaining a peaceful household, download my free ebook, 7 Strategies to Keep Your Relationship with Your Kids From Hitting the Boiling Point.

Love and Blessings,

Katherine

P.S. Check out Conscious Parenting Revolution on Daytime NBC WFLA where we discuss the guidance approach to parenting!

 

Categories
Body Language Growth Leadership Management

Staying Positive Amid Adversity

Increasing inflation, higher interest rates, decreased investment, and interruptions brought on by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are all factors why the World Bank said in its most recent Global Economic Prospects that the world economy is currently contracting severely.

If you add in any additional negative incident, such as higher-than-expected inflation rate, abrupt increases in interest rates (to manage inflation), a possible resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic, or growing geopolitical tensions, it might send the world economy into recession, given the already precarious economic conditions. This is the first time that two worldwide recessions occurred within the same decade!

Here in the US, the economy is predicted to slow down even further and suffer a minor recession. According to an economic forecast by JP Morgan, the US economy is anticipated to have a modest 0.5-1% real GDP growth rate in 2023, taking into account the possibility of a light recession starting in the latter half of the year. From 1.5-2% in 2022, 6% in 2021, and the longer-term average annual growth rate of 1.8%, this would represent a further slowdown in growth. However, is this just a lead-in to a more aggressive recession expected in early 2024?

All these numbers may sound confusing, but to make things short, we’re in for some tough times ahead. It’s one of those times when we have to tighten our proverbial belts and steel ourselves for some adversity and some uncomfortable change.

If there’s anything the recent pandemic has taught us is that change can happen slowly at first and then suddenly come crashing all at once. To survive, we often hear from others to “stay positive”—but what does this even mean? Does this simply mean embracing a positive, more hopeful outlook? Or do you have to have a concrete plan to bring those positive thoughts into reality?

We offer a slightly different perspective.

We struggle in the face of adversity not because we lack positivity but because we are unable to handle negativity. They’re not the same at all.

Positive thinking has been lauded for a good reason countless times. According to studies, it has a direct correlation with health, lifespan, and a higher standard of living. There is no question about that. Positive thinking is important, but it’s not enough to help you change the circumstance you’re in.

As explained by Kazimierz Dbrowski’s theory of positive disintegration, changing one’s self-concept is the only way for humans to progress. A person can be compelled to modify their self-concept if their current self-concept cannot handle or does not fit their current circumstances.

Think about your life—you may recall that every instance of severe suffering and agony, most often than not, is followed by unprecedented personal growth. The majority of successful people who experienced difficulty used the same as a catalyst in their lives at some point. They grew because they could no longer function in the same way. In short, they learned to adapt. They transformed not because of their surroundings, not because of society, but because their internal needs and wants can no longer be fulfilled by their past selves.

So how do we go about transforming ourselves?

According to Dąbrowski, self-concept reformation involves three phases, or levels, of development:

  1. You have to learn to adapt to your impulses and surroundings. People are influenced by their impulses or their social environments. This is known as primitive or primary People rely on cultural, social, and even religious influences to create a picture of how the world works. The people who remain at this level their entire lives have the most trouble becoming self-reliant, independent, and generally moving up in life.
  2. Once you realize that most of what you believe in is “borrowed” from others, you set out on a journey of self-discovery. You begin to explore your intrinsic desires. Eventually, you’ll realize that you are either going to progress or digress. Dąbrowski explains that you begin to ask yourself whether to “follow your instincts (first factor), your teachings (second factor), or your heart (third factor)”? For example, you may begin to reform and transform your lower-level instincts, like anger or aggression, into positive motivation, empathy, and understanding.
  3. You begin to form a worldview that’s based on your own beliefs. This is the stage where people that shift into higher thinking begin to see that the events of their lives are related to their mindset and response systems. Once this is understood, it becomes “impossible” to revert to lower levels of thinking. Once you see how much control you have over your life, you can’t unsee it.

What we can learn from this

Introspection, thinking about what we have gone through, and looking back at our past can sometimes paralyze forward motion, BUT, at times, looking back is a catalyst for moving ahead.

One of the important lessons we can take from looking back is the realization that we are not the first, or only ones, to encounter difficult circumstances.

Another lesson we can pick up from looking into our past is that even if you were not lucky enough to have a rosy heritage—even if you have suffered abuse, absence, addiction, anger, or disinterest, you can use these experiences to break negative patterns and establish new priorities.

Conclusion

Positive thinking is more than just being hopeful. It entails discovering what your catalyst would be to help you weather any adversity and help you move forward. This means you have to deal with a lot of discomfort—rather than trying to cultivate more comfort. Positive thinking means that you start to view your struggles not as a judgment of your status in life but rather as a cue that positive change needs to occur. Instead of trying to avoid intense feelings and call them a solution, we can listen to those feelings and consider them messengers, even purveyors of change.

To know more about positive thinking and what the upcoming recession means for business, tune into Charged Up Studio, the podcast, on February 7th to hear economist, Bill Conerly, talk about what we can expect in 2023.

Categories
Body Language Growth Parenting

We Celebrate Black History month

February is Black History Month and we want to take this opportunity to highlight, honor and celebrate a few of the incredible contributions the Black community has made to science, the arts, politics and social justice.

Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, all three demonstrated the power to change society with non-violent conflict resolution. The lives they led continue to inspire ours and shed light on the way forward.

Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson, these three brilliant women who were depicted in the film Hidden Figures were major contributors to the US historic launch of John Glen into orbit.

Last year, the nation inaugurated its first Black vice president, a woman who previously held important roles as a former district attorney of San Francisco, as well as attorney general and a junior US Senator from California.

And at the inauguration of the President of the US, twenty-two year old Amanda Gorman recited her poem The Hill We Climb making her the youngest inaugural poet ever! The poem was a call for “unity and collaboration and togetherness” among the American people. It took my breath away and I offer you her poise, words of promise and hope and encouragement with this link to her inspirational address.

I was born in New Orleans, La. in the heart of the deep south and in the middle of the civil rights movement.

I believe that before the country can move past racial harm there needs to be truth, accountability and hopefully reconciliation. We need to have the difficult conversations.

There is always light.

  If only we’re brave enough to see it.

  If only we’re brave enough to be it.

-Amanda Gorman 29 Dec 2021

Love and Blessings,

Katherine

Categories
Body Language Entrepreneurship Growth

Big Life Changes & How to Support Your Child

Dear Katherine,

Our second baby was born only a few weeks before the pandemic began.

I know my older son loves his baby brother, but I’m fearful that in addition to dealing with the huge adjustment of having a baby in the house, he associates his brother’s arrival with the negativity of the pandemic.

My son is a strong-willed, opinionated child, and these events have understandably been stressful for him.

How can I be there for him and help him separate these two big life changes?

Sincerely,

Bad Timing

Bad Timing, my heart goes out to you. It sounds like your older son has a lot on his plate right now. I commend you for taking a step back to empathize with him during what must be a challenging time for your whole family.

When you have more than one child, you open up a new world of twice the joy. . . and twice the challenges. As supportive parents, all we want is for our children to get along, but older kids can have a difficult time adjusting to sharing attention and affection with a new sibling. This adjustment period is perfectly normal, and in your case it’s compounded by a couple of other factors.

First, your older son is a strong-willed, autonomous child. Autonomous children, by nature, are at high risk of attracting their parents’ disapproval. When your son acts out, he solicits negative attention, which can make him feel like you’re favoring his younger brother over him. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

To make matters even worse, your older son’s whole world was upended by the pandemic shortly after his baby brother came home. In addition to adjusting to the normal shifts in routine brought about by having a new baby around, he also had to adjust to the stress of COVID-19.

So, how can you solve these problems together?

The first step is to recognize the unmet need that is causing this tension inside your older son. You said he loves his brother, which is wonderful, but he probably still needs reassurance that his parents love him just the same even though there’s a new baby at home.

Once you can help him understand that he didn’t lose anything when he gained a brother, he’ll have an easier time viewing the situation in a positive light and separating it from the negativity of the pandemic.

Here are some parenting tips that can help you support him during this adjustment period:

  • Schedule one-on-one time. Setting aside dedicated time for your older son is critical for his self-esteem right now. Your son probably fears that his little brother will overshadow him. Making a point to have time for just the two of you will assure him that you have enough love and affection to go around.
  • Explain the candle metaphor. It’s hard to explain the love you have for your children in terms that they can understand: that you love them both equally, even though they’re completely different people. One clever way to illustrate the unlimited space in your heart is to show your son a lit candle. Use the lit candle to light a new candle. Explain how both flames are equally bright, and that the first one didn’t lose any of its brightness when the second one lit up.
  • Be more communicative. I know that you’re busy, especially with a new baby to take care of. There are times, I’m sure, when you can’t schedule that one-on-one time that your son needs. When it’s hard to squeeze in time for the two of you, tell him how excited you are for your next one-on-one. This verbal reminder will boost his self-worth and assure him of just how much you love him

Bad Timing, you can be grateful that your strong-willed son is letting you know that he needs some reassurance right now. His willingness to express his negative emotions signals that your relationship is already strong.

Love and Blessings,

Katherine

 

PS Don’t forget, to start 2023, we’re offering you 70% off of ANY of our supplemental parenting tools! That includes the Ultimate Parenting Toolbox, Applying Solutions Mini Course, and our Conscious Parenting Kickstart! Just go to our Conscious Parenting Revolution site and use the code TAKE ACTION at checkout. I’m so excited to dive deeper into this journey with you!

Categories
Body Language Growth Leadership Management

Are Your Learners Using New Skills after Training Ends?

You and your organization are spending money on training. But are your trainees really using the new skills they learned in training, or do they immediately go back to business as usual?

Here are seven strategies that can help assure that they are:

  1. During training, explain what you will be monitoring afterwards. This sounds basic, but it can be effective. For example, if one of your goals is to have your salespeople follow up a minimum of four times before giving up on a sale, tell them they will be tracked on that. There is wisdom in the old saying, “What gets measured, gets done.”
  2. Schedule additional training sessions. This sounds pretty fundamental too, yet some companies seem to assume that once training is done, it’s done. The fact is, follow-up sessions can be highly effective in making sure that training “sticks.” Deliver follow-up content in online lessons or to mobile devices.
  3. Let trainees monitor and support each other. Try setting up weekly calls where trainees check in with each other to ask, “What have you tried so far . . . how is it working for you?” This can be more effective than having upper management look in.
  4. Follow training with coaching. Your trainer can take on a coaching role and work directly with trainees after training ends. Or executives within your organization can.
  5. Use technology to keep things percolating. You can send a daily tip or motivational message or video to trainees via text messages or email. We can help you integrate them seamlessly into your training program at very little cost.
  6. Shake up the way your trainees do their jobs. Instead of having each member of your sales staff make sales calls alone, for example, let them partner up and make sales calls in pairs. It can be a great way to make sure your trainees step out of their comfort zones and try new things.
  7. Consider adding incentives or awards. When a customer service rep successfully hits one of the benchmarks you set out in training, you can give her an award and share that news with all the other trainees. Used in the right way, awards can assure that more of your learners apply the lessons they learned in training.

 

Should You Use Social Media to Support Training?

We have been seeing more of this lately – trainees are so excited that they set up a Facebook page, a LinkedIn group or other social media presence to discuss their new skills. There is one additional consideration to keep in mind, however. Do you want your competitors, customers, clients and other company outsiders to look at those pages and learn all about your training? If that is a concern – and perhaps it should be – consider setting up groups that require interested people to apply for membership and get approved before joining.

 

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