Teaching our kids about healthy friendships

Helping our kids navigate friendships is so tough. There are times as moms, where we see that our child’s friendship seems unhealthy, but we struggle with what to do to help our kids through those situations. I’m starting to realize, that a part of the approach to dealing with this issue, is helping our kids identify not only what kinds of friends they want to have but what kinds of friendships they should try to avoid.

So how would I describe an unhealthy friendship to my kids? Hmm, that’s a tough one. However, if I were to hazard an approach, here’s what I would do. I would encourage my kids to begin to take notice and observe their friendships a little more. When they share a piece of good news with their friend, I want my kids to notice if that friend seems happy for them or do they say something to brush it aside and act like it’s no big deal, or do they respond with an even bigger more important thing that they did. I want my kids to be surrounded by friends who can receive and give encouragement. I’m also planning on asking my kids to observe their own pattern with their friends and adjust accordingly.

The other thing I’d like to encourage my kids to pay attention to is whether their friend is open to sharing them with other good friends or if they only want to keep the friendship isolated to the two of them. On the other hand, does their friend tend to ditch them when someone ‘better’ comes along?

I also want my kids to be aware of how their friends make them feel. When they hang out with their friend, do they feel encouraged and supported or does their friend say mean things to them, while sometimes even presenting it as ‘just a joke’.

Establishing healthy friendships is an important lesson we can teach our kids. As we know all too well, our teaching tools can’t only be verbal. We need to utilize other resources to help the life lessons we try and teach be even more effective. So how do you do that? Well, in a situation like this, it means taking the time to double check our friendships too. As moms, we’ve got to practice what we preach. So, if we have unhealthy friendships in our lives, maybe it’s time to let them go. Share your realization with your kids, talk openly about your reasons for wanting healthier friendships and how you’re going about distancing yourself from your unhealthy friend. Maybe watching your process of choosing healthier friendships, will inspire and motivate your child to choose healthier friendships for themselves too.

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3 Tips for the New Year

Here are three tips I hope will brighten your new year! First, is the fact that the world needs you! It needs the unique light that only you can bring to it. So keep striving to be your best you, keep loving on the people around you and keep making a positive difference in your corner of the world.

Second, I hope you remember to fill your heart with gratitude. There is so much to be grateful for; so many blessings in your life. Give thanks for the small and big things. It’s so important to keep giving thanks with a grateful heart.

Finally, the third tips is, I hope you set your intentions for the new year. I don’t believe in making New Year’s Resolutions per se, but I do think there’s something amazing about setting an intention live happier, to choose to be healthier, to love more fully and to contribute in meaningful ways to the world we live in. So go ahead and set some intentions for the new year that resonate well with your values and who you are.

Og Mandino said, “Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.” So set the intention to plant some good seeds, be grateful for what you have and keep striving to be your best you. Sending you good vibes, positivity and blessings for the new year.

If you’re looking for a great way to kick off your year and take better care of your mind, body and soul, then download this FREE ‘Healthy Living Reference Guide and Wellness Tracker‘! It will help you remember to nourish your mind through affirmations, reading etc. Maintain a healthy body through exercise, food and drink, and comfort your soul through prayer, scripture and reflection. You can download it here!

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Choosing Healthy Living

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a total foodie.  I love the smells, textures and taste of good, hearty food. About two years ago, a friend of mine mentioned she was doing a healthy living challenge. To be honest, I was not interested, after all, I love my food way too much for that sort of commitment.  However, after listening to her experience, I decided to give it a go. Here’s what she said that shifted my perspective enough to start choosing healthy living. She mentioned how she was feeling sluggish, tired and had low energy and how this meal plan helped her to turn that around. She was now a woman who felt energized, alert and focused. I was like, ‘girl, you need to tell me more!’ She shared a bit about her weight loss and how that was an added bonus. After saying goodbye, I decided to do some research on my own. What I subsequently learned, made me want to try it out for myself.

“She was feeling sluggish, tired and had low energy and this meal plan helped her to turn that around.” [Tweet this]

Was it easy to do? Not at all, I had to cut out foods like gluten, dairy, soy, alcohol, refined sugars, peanuts, caffeine etc. What I incorporated into my meals instead, was way more vegetables, fruits, lean meats, poultry, fish and healthy fats. I involved my whole family and presented it as a ‘healthy living adventure’. Fortunately for me, they were happy to go on the adventure too. I got my challenge kit in the mail a few days later and opened it up to reveal protein powders, fibre, energy sticks, detox tea, a 7 day cleanse and a helpful support guide. I was also included in a closed Facebook group where I got support and encouragement to keep eating healthier, weekly menu plans and ingredient shopping lists which made sticking with the plan super easy because it took the guessing work out of it.

I’ve now been following this system on and off for a year and I’m still loving it. What I learned from choosing healthy living, is that our bodies need to be cleansed from all the junk and toxins that accumulate in our systems over time. That although I’m a foodie, I want to incorporate way more locally grown whole foods into my diet. That I want to model healthy eating habits for my kids and that begins with me making better food choices. Finally, that sometimes you need a tribe to help you kickstart your journey to healthy living, people to help you stay accountable, who know how hard it is to not just gobble down that cinnabon and are happy to celebrate with you when you’ve hit your own personal milestones. The challenge starts the first Monday of every month, learn more about the Healthy Living Challenge or kickstart your journey to healthy today.

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