How We Can Instill An Attitude of Gratitude In Our Children

Stop Sign Hold On a Minute

Okay, so before you give me a “You don’t tell me what to do with my kids look” – I just want to say, HOLD UP! this post is not about how you should raise your kids. That’s totally your business and your prerogative however; this post is about my experience or should I say “on-going” experience with making sure I instill this in my own children, which has it’s many ups, downs, curve-balls and catch 22 throws – given the day.

So, if you’re struggling with getting your kids to appreciate what they have already as opposed to having their hands out waiting on every new gadget that comes out on the market, then maybe some of the tips I have will help – then again, you may have some pointers that can help me out, so please feel free to leave any helpful tips in the comment section, they will be greatly appreciated –

When I had my kids or I guess I should say “before” I had my two kids, my goal was to give them everything in the world, including the things that I felt like my own mom couldn’t afford to give me – I was determined, when I grew up,  I was going to make sure I made up for my loss through my kids. Let me just say, that was a fantasy world filled with rainbows and unicorns that never came to fruition because “after” I had my kids, reality hit me like a ton of bricks. I didn’t count on going through a divorce, foreclosure, repossessions, dead-end jobs that didn’t pay enough money, let alone having to raise them all alone. So the glitz and glamour life I dreamed of for them soon became a fire that seemed to never go out.

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My mom used to always tell us growing up, “If you appreciate what you have now, God will bless you to what you want later.” that talk usually came during the time when we had to eat brown beans and cornbread for 3 or 4 days in a row. As a child, I didn’t understand why we didn’t have what other kids had or why we always had to get our clothes from the thrift store and when mama worked in the cafeteria at a local high school, why did the leftovers that nobody touched or wanted had to be our dinner for the night. While I didn’t understand those times and hardships or why mama worked so hard to seemingly bring home nothing in terms of money, she was so right “God definitely did bless us to get what we wanted to eat, when those food stamps came the following week…lol

We learned to be grateful for little and when we received a lot – we knew how to handle it. Now that I’m older with children of my own – although the jobs offer more and we have a little more than back then – the principal of “being grateful” still exists. But when you live in a world where everyone wants “MORE” it can be a strain sometimes on a parent to fulfill that thirst with our own kids; especially when they’re coming out with a new phone every two months or new sneakers every single day and when your kids see that?, the only thing they know is “They want It” and as a parent, we try our best to make sure they get it – but is that really good behavior? I mean, what are we telling them, that life works that way? You see it, You want it, and it will be given to you?

UNFORTUNATELY – NOT IN THIS LIFE!!!

Listed below are a couple of things that I do to get my kids to be more grateful or appreciative of what they have.

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photo courtesy of bing

Let them Know Life Requires Work

As a Mom I have to remind my kids that if they want anything in life, they have to work for it and that doesn’t mean when they get in their 20’s, No – the act of working for what you want starts now! If I let them get away with not doing the dishes but still reward them anyway, then that’s setting them up for failure because they’ll get older and think that life is supposed to work that way and unfortunately it doesn’t.

Saying No, Will Not Hurt Their Feelings in the Future!

Okay, I admit – I hate saying No to my kids but at the same time, I can’t always say yes either because they’re not going to always receive a YES in life, I wish that were true but again, unfortunately it’s not. Saying No to your child now teaches them early about disappointment. As parents we have to teach them how to deal with disappointment when they get a NO because their attitude will determine what the outcome will be.

Give Them Real Talk About Your Situation

I know most parents hate telling their children when they have hit hard times or maybe dad or mom just got laid off of work in which will bring major changes to the household. But I say, talk to your kids about what’s going on – (Use your discretion) but I feel like when things are hidden its a setup for disappointment, anger and resentment – now while you still may get that type of behavior once you reveal your truth, at least they know what’s going on – and then again, you just may be surprised at how they respond or take it. I talk to my children about our hardships and I have been very surprised at how they handled it and what suggestions they have come up with to help out.

Teach Them To Be More Givers instead of Receivers

We live in a world where children no longer want or feel as though they have to work for anything, as parents, they feel as though we’re made of money. An ATM in which they can come, push a button and get what they want – but not so! The act of giving more than receiving has to be taught to them, as it’s not something that they will grab a hold of themselves – it has to be shown through you. My mother was a huge giver of her money, time and resources and because of seeing her be that type of person my whole life, it stuck with me and it’s something that I try to teach my kids to do and that’s to be selfless.

Unfortunate Situations – Show Them, Don’t Tell Them

Another great lesson in which I ‘m trying to instill in my kids is that everyone is not as fortunate as them. My daughter complained one night because she had to eat green beans with her dinner and because she didn’t want to do it, she decided that she wasn’t going to eat at all due to the fact of it not being what she wanted. I had to tell and show her that every child is not so fortunate to have a meal or a mom to come home and cook for them. There are children whom would eat those green beans and anything else you put on their plate, because they know at one point they didn’t have anything to eat and are just grateful to get anything. In most countries children are not even given choices as to what they want to eat – so showing our kids unfortunate situations could help them be a little more grateful for what they have, even though it’s not what they want.

Raising kids is hard-work as we have a limited time to teach them everything we feel they may need to know in the world. Teaching them to have an attitude of gratitude may not be one of the lessons that seem to be with them now but if we keep teaching – hopefully the seeds being planted will yield a good harvest, and maybe just maybe – They’ll thank us for it later.

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photo courtesy of bing

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud, Inspire Often & Love Hard!

 

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Answering Work Emails On the Weekends? Yes or No…

I was talking with a friend recently and she began to discuss with me how her boss emails her on the weekends and this isn’t a once in a while occurrence – this is every single weekend, nonstop. As she began to describe the feelings of “job commitment” that comes over her when she taps the respond button, I began to think about how I too was in her same shoes and would answer all sorts of emails from work “on my weekends” and “days off” YES! you can say I was quite the committed employee. As someone whom wanted to always make a good impression with my boss; I later realized that I had taken on a whole lot more than I could chew.

Model employee you could say, but was that really coming across to my boss because I answered multiple emails on the weekends? Uhhh—–NO! One email answered at 10pm one night, changed my life forever. It was a night in which I had nothing to do and just happened to browse my work email (in which I had coming to my phone) and seen that my boss had emailed me to ask a question, to their surprise – I answered them back. “I wasn’t expecting you to answer this time of night?” they explained and I said “Oh, it was no problem.” While they assured me that answering emails after hours or on weekends was not necessary, I continued to do it and they soon took it as “This girl is available at all times” and used it to their advantage, not only them but multiple people after them. I had set myself up as the availability gal in which you could email at any time and get a response.

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Answering work emails during your “personal time” can become complicated

While this was fun and liberating at first, it soon became a nightmare. Suddenly I was getting emails at the most awkward times of the night or day. They usually trickled in during the time in which I was spending with family, friends or having a mental health day. What had I started!!, my life was beginning to turn into a 365, 7day a week, 24 hours a day job. I suddenly realized that I had no time for myself as I soon began going in to work on weekends, Sundays included and stay extra hours after work and to answer emails on top of all that —– My job seemed like it was becoming a never ending story. Once you put yourself out there to be the “IT” person – everything changes, including your personal life.

I abruptly decided one day to just shut down the email on my phone altogether. I also stopped going in on weekends and while I do have my current job email coming to my phone now, I only check it or respond when I feel it’s an emergency that needs to be handled right away. If not, then it can wait till Monday. You see?, I felt that if I answered emails on the weekends that it would make me a more valuable employee but what it made me was a robot. I never received any awards, recognition or cool points with the boss because I answered an email after hours or on weekends and my pay definitely didn’t change. So who was I really doing this for and why had I subjected myself to this task? Because I wanted to show my boss they could count on me – no matter what.

And while that’s all good, it wasn’t good for my health; sanity or livelihood – so something had to change and change FAST!

Do you feel obligated to answer work emails after hours or weekends? Well, if you’re feeling the pressure – Don’t worry, just take the necessary steps below:

Just Say No

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There’s no harm in saying NO!

Don’t get me wrong, we all work jobs in which we want to be relevant and deemed as a good employee but there has to be a line crossed somewhere. When we constantly say YES to everything our boss shoots our way, we put ourselves in position to not have feelings, a say or an opinion about anything. It’s okay to say NO sometimes. Especially if it’s going to interfere with your life outside of the workplace or office. They can’t fire you for saying NO.

Have a Conversation with the Boss

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Check with your Boss to see what their idea of after hours entails

You might want to see where your boss stands on how they want you to respond to emails during your off hours and is it a requirement. Personally, I used to have a boss that would send me emails after hours but only because if they didn’t do it right away, they would forget to and working at night was sort of their down time in which they used to respond to emails. So, get your bosses opinion on what they would like you to do concerning it. You may also want to let them know that your off hours and  weekends are very busy. Express the fact that if they do send an email, you may not respond until the next workday. This will let your boss know your stance on after hour emails and that they should not expect a response.

Expectations, Expectation, Expectations – Watch Out!

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The more you put yourself out, The more will be expected of you.

Ever noticed how when you do something for a person one time – they tend to take advantage of you doing it that one time and consistently come back to you again and again expecting you to do the same thing? That’s how we can become when we give of ourselves more than we should. It’s okay to be nice and kind but at the end of the day, you’re required to perform your job duties (that’s what you get paid for) anything in over excess to that can lead people to expect more from you than you’re willing to give. Only give what you can afford to give away because your time is precious.

Self-Care is the Best Care

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Self Care will Save your Life

Whether it’s concerning work or anything else that may be pressing in your life. You must take care of yourself, including your sanity. I’ve been on jobs where I’ve over exhausted myself trying to prove or show how good of an employee I was and at the end of the day, I was the one with the swollen ankles, extreme headache and body aches. I was literally stressing myself out, while I made others feel comfy, cozy. Just as your boss needs their time, so do you. You’re no good to them, the business or organization if you’re spazzed out, stressed or in the hospital. Learn to turn off your email notifications from work or just don’t answer them at all. While that may be hard to do (because it was for me) you have to realize that you’re only one person and if something happens to you; will they come to your aide? No…(yes they’ll be concerned but the job must and always will go on, whether you’re there or not)

That’s sad to say, but in reality – we only get one life, one chance and one opportunity to make the best of it as much as possible and I can think of a million things for you to do besides answering that annoying email message from you know who. Life is short my friend and those after hour/weekend emails can wait…Life, unfortunately cannot.

All images used were courtesy of Bing ~

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud & Love Hard!

Sunday’s Thought: Expiring ME, To Exalt YOU!

I love the bible app, it has so many features such as creating a verse image in which you can post on your social media pages, if you highlight a scripture; it has a way of keeping everything you highlight in once place, which is helpful because you don’t have to scram through the bible to find it. I also love the bible plans, I usually read one or two at a time as it sort of keeps me in tune with reading my word and staying in contact with God.

A shame that something so minuet has to keep us on schedule to make time with the father of all creation, but it helps. However, there are times in my life where reading a plan, picking up a bible or even praying can seem to get lost in life’s shuffle. Work, Kids, Bosses, 2nd Jobs, Bills, Schedules, To-Do Lists, Doctor Appointments and Life Just Happened moments become our main priority while God easily slips to second base or the back burner while we allow the priorities of life to overwhelm us.

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I am so guilty of this, no lie because when “LIFE HAPPENS” it seems like EVERYTHING happens – ALL AT ONCE! and it’s easy to allow it’s circumstances to literally rule our day and life at the moment; but it wasn’t until I starting reading the bible plan ReThink Life: 40 Day Devotional from YouVersion that I began to think about a lot of things going on in my present life including my current priorities. In day 16 I came to realize that while I know giving my issues and life to God is the best resort as he’s the one that can “sort it all out” I really don’t totally give everything over to him; because I’m human, I always feel as though “I know best” or “It won’t get done, if I don’t have a hand in it to push it though” so while I pray and ask God to take my matters into his own hand, I find myself getting up only to take it back from him to handle it myself and when it fails? Then, that’s when my prayers get serious.

The one thing that stood out to me in that thought was this:

Check your “to-do” list for the week, is your schedule revolving around things that are eternally important like your relationship with God, your family and people who need Jesus?

So many times our to-do lists have every other thing listed on it besides the ones named above. At the end of the day, it won’t be how accomplished we feel about checking off the things on our list but rather who’s life was changed due to our attitude, what impact have we made on someone other than ourselves, do they really see Christ within us? If not, then maybe you need to expire.

You see, that’s what Martha got hung up over in Luke 10:38-42, Jesus had come to her and her sister’s house for a visit and instead of her sister Mary helping her in the kitchen, she chose to sit at Jesus’s feet and listen to him – upset, Martha asked Jesus to tell Mary to come and help her prepare in the kitchen but Jesus stated to Martha that she was worried over trivial things and what Mary had chosen to do, was much more better than being worried about preparations.

What are you worried about today? Is the “Life Happens” got you stuck? Maybe you should really take out time and be like Mary and seek God on what his priorities for your life should be, I promise if you would just ask – your earthly worries will be a thing of the past because you know who holds everything in his hand.

Say today’s prayer and ask God to help you see things from his perspective and not your own. This prayer was taken away from the ReThink Life: 40 Day Devotional 

Father, today I thank you for your word that says if I seek you first the all these other things will be taken care of in my life. I pray today that you will begin to show me what you want me to prioritize in my life. Help me to see my schedule from an eternal perspective. If it is time for me to end some things I pray you will strengthen me to do it so that you can begin something new in me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

Blessings ~

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud & Love Hard!

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Feel free to comment or email us @ justsuminspiration@gmail.com

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Sunday’s Thought: Dust It Off And Get To Work

What have you put off recently or maybe last year that you promised yourself that you would re-visit. Was it a great Idea, A book, The Promise to finish school and further your career, Did you tell yourself that you were going to do that demo, but life picked you up and carried you away? How about that savings account, last year you said that you would have such and such amount saved by this time this year, but your account is still showing the same amount it did last year and that amount is only to keep it active and open.

Has your GREAT ideas been collecting dust?

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Yesterday, I was going through my flash drive and came across something that I started but did not finish, I started a book in 2013 and never revisited it until just yesterday, and THIS IS THE YEAR 2017!! Something that I told myself that I would work on consistently for a year fell flat about a month in and I had not picked it back up until 4yrs later.

What have you put off on the back burner and either forgot all about it or told yourself that you were going to achieve it or complete it and got half way in only to GIVE UP! on the goal you so eagerly wanted to complete. “Why continue putting off tomorrow what you can do NOW!!” Listen, life is short; too short for us not to complete the task that was put before us. I challenge you today to dust off that computer and get to writing that book, Dust off that treadmill and run again, Buy the tickets for that long awaited trip, Pick up the phone and call that person that you keep putting off calling, Lose that unwanted weight, follow your dreams on becoming whatever you want to be. Push yourself to the limit and make it happen..

No more should ‘a, could ‘a, would ‘a’s, I wonders, I wish I had of or where would I be right now, If I had only STARTED!. No worries because we all have places that we need to revisit, especially if they will push us forward to success.

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Revisit that place of stagnation, the place of “leftovers” and commit yourself to not only achieving but eating up and digesting the golden nuggets you left behind, It’s something good there, it’s just waiting on you to finish it up. I promise you’ll be glad you did. So while I dust off this book and continue to write until I finish it. What do you plan to do?

SIMPLE TIPS FOR GETTING BACK ON TRACK WITH YOUR PROJECTS

  • Set a Timer for yourself. We have these smart phones that can do almost everything under the sun for us, why not schedule a time (with a buzz) sort of like an alarm for yourself to work on your goal or project daily or monthly.
  • Sticky Notes. Okay, so they’re not small and yellow for nothing and their name fits them correctly “sticky” – meaning you can write down your goal or project and stick them all over the house, especially in the places where you visit the most or frequently. (ex. The Bathroom)
  • Accountability. Hey, if you have friends; put them to work! You’ve heard the saying “Teamwork makes the Dream-work” and if they’re really good friends they’ll help you remember your goals and push you toward completing your project.
  • Reminisce. Think about where you would be, the goals you would crush, the lives that would be changed only if you START & COMPLETE! Do you really want to go another month, year or years still stuck with the same mindset of “I wonder?”

We’re the Only Ones that Keep “US” back, You can follow the first 3 tips all you want but if you don’t pursue and take charge of what you want out of life, then it’s not those things fault; but yours.

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud & Love Hard!

** ** **

Feel free to comment or email us @ justsuminspiration@gmail.com

For Daily Inspiration, you can follow us on one or all of the social media sites below:

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