5 Ways to Help Your Kids Thrive, Even if Life Is Chaotic, Jam Packed & Crazy

When our kids are born they are little pieces of perfection. We look at them and promise that they are going to have the perfect life, that we will be the perfect parent, that the life challenges we faced they won’t have to.

Wouldn’t it be lovely if it really turned out that way?

We all have our challenges. Kids especially. It’s always been hard to be a kid, with school and acne and braces and lost best friends and that dreaded gym class. They don’t want us but they need us.

5 Ways to Help Your Kids Thrive

#1 – Take the time to sit with them. Just be in their presence. So many of us spend our time running around, multi tasking. Our child is at the table, doing homework, and we are making phone calls, chopping vegetables, paying bills. Take a few minutes and just sit next to your child. Share the silence. Kris did that one night. Her daughter was reading a book and she joined her on the couch with her own book. After a few minutes her daughter put down her book and told her mom about something that happened at school that day. Kris shared that the interaction meant a lot to both of them and that she got just a little insight into her daughter’s life.

#2 – Listen to them. We like to think that we listen to our kids when they talk to us but many of us are doing other things when they do so. Have you ever found yourself say “uh huh” when your child pauses for reaction and realizing that you have no idea what they just said. When your child talks to you stop what you are doing and really pay attention. Even if it’s a frivolous story you might get some nugget of information for future use.

#3 – Don’t be a helicopter parent. Children are going to make mistakes. They NEED to make mistakes. They NEED to learn how to do things on their own. If you are always hovering, picking up the pieces when they fall, they will never learn how to do it on their own. Julie always tied her daughter’s shoes for her. Always. And then, on her daughter’s first day of school, Julie wasn’t there to tie them for her. Her daughter was crushed and didn’t want to go back to school the next day. Julie taught her daughter how to tie her own shoes that very night and she happily went off to school the next day.

#4 – Be Positive. Yes, we have all had challenging life experiences, experiences that we don’t want our children to have. But, no matter how hard we try, we can’t stop them from happening. When you see your child facing something that you faced and failed at, DON’T let your feelings of failure enter the conversation. Think about what you might have done differently and share that with them instead. Be positive.

#5 – Take care of their health. It is essential that all of us take care of ourselves, that we get enough sleep and exercise and eat a healthy diet. Many kids these days don’t get enough of the first two and too much of the last one (and often not so healthy). When your kids become teenagers it is very difficult to influence their lifestyle choices so it is important to work hard in their early years to instill good habits. Make sure they have a comfy bed and that they play outside after school. Limit their screen time. Have healthy food available but don’t make Oreos totally taboo. Kim’s kids had a steady diet of frozen pizza and French fries that they consumed in front of the TV. Her kids were always bears at bed-time which made the morning routine especially difficult. At my suggestion she tweaked their diets and they ate dinner together at the dinner table and suddenly bedtime was a dream and the mornings were better too.

So there you go, 5 ways to help your kids thrive. Really, none of these tips are reinventing the wheel but they are often overlooked amid the chaos of everyday living. But you can do it. You are doing it already. Just pay attention and tweak things here and there and you will see a huge difference.

Do you have any stories about ways you have helped your children thrive? Questions about challenges that regularly arise? I would love to hear from you…

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

The 5 Best Things You Can Do for a Friend, Even if You Feel Like You Have Nothing Left to Give

One of the most important pieces of true happiness is intimate connection, good friendships. The care and keeping of a friendship is not always the easiest thing to do, especially with the chaotic life that comes with being a mom, but with a little consciousness and action it can be made easier.

Below you will find a list of the 5 best things you can do for a friend. Do them and not only will you be a good friend but you will find yourself a happier person too.

5 Best Things You Can Do For a Friend

#1 – Support each other and be honest

Friends are great for confiding in. There is nothing better than sitting down with a friend and, over a hot cup of tea, debriefing her about the terrible row you had with your partner the night before. A good friend will listen and commiserate. A good friend will also be honest with you, giving her perspective without judging or berating. And a good friend will take note of what her friend says.

#2 – Make each other laugh

This chaotic, jam-packed and exhausting world that we live in can be a poisonous one. The best antidote is laughter. The physical act of smiling will actually improve your mood and if the smile is followed by laughter the effect is exponentially greater.

#3 – Share experiences

Women’s experiences are markedly similar. It’s almost eerie how alike women’s lives are all over the world.  Being around people with shared experience has twofold benefits. First, it makes you fell less alone because you know other people have experienced what you have experienced. Secondly, you can learn from another’s experience by hearing it’s process and outcome.

#4 – Eat ice cream

Many women feel guilty indulging in any kind of sweet. And standing alone at your kitchen counter shoveling Oreos into your mouth is not a good idea. But the act of sharing something sweet with a friend, one bowl, two spoons, can be a truly bonding and uplifting experience.

#5 – Take walks

Exercise is one of the most important things to do to feel healthy and happy. And walking with a friend is a great, painless way to get exercise. As an added benefit, when you go for a walk you can apply the first 3 principles above and then after the walk you can do the 4th without guilt!

So there you go, the 5 best things you can do for a friend. They aren’t difficult at all; they just take a little bit of time and attention. And the benefits are twofold because you both will be happier because of your efforts. And your happiness will pay itself forward to your children, your partner and your co-workers.

What do you do with your friends that make you happy?

 

If you’re feeling like your friendships are suffering, or you’d like to refocus your energy to create healthier, more joyful relationships, let’s talk. Sign up for your free session with me today.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Ways To Really Be Heard, Even if You Think No One is Listening

Do you sometimes feel like you talk and you talk and nobody hears what you are saying? Do you find yourself saying the same things over and over again, just trying to be understood? It doesn’t have to be this way.

In this article I will tell you the 5 ways to really be heard. They are simple, effective and easy to implement.

5 Ways to Really be Heard

 

#1 – Use as few words as possible

You know the kind of person. Someone who goes on and on, trying to make a point, and somewhere along the way you lose interest. The experts say the most effective way of being heard is to use 15 words or less. Your word count doesn’t have to be precise but using as few words as possible to communicate your thoughts is the best way to go.

#2 – Do not attack

Our inclination, when we feel we have been wronged, is to go on the offensive. When someone doesn’t return your phone call you say “Why didn’t you return my call? That was very rude.” This tone immediately puts someone on the defensive and won’t lead anywhere good. Try instead “I was very disappointed when you didn’t return my phone call. I was hoping to talk to you about….” This tact lets someone know how you are feeling. And they can’t get defensive about how you are feeling. And it makes them realize that their actions affect others.

#3 – Be thoughtful with your timing

The best time to be heard is not in the middle of a stressful situation or an all out argument. The best time to be heard is when you are relaxed and calm. One of my clients has a mother who always calls while she is busy making dinner. She could have loudly exclaimed during one of her phone calls “Mom, why do you always call at dinner? It’s a crazy time of day!” Instead she called her mother one morning after she got the kids off to school and said the same thing, calmly. Her mother heard her and started calling mid-morning instead.

#4 – Make sure you listen

Sure, if you follow the approach given above, it’s easy to say what you want to say. It’s very important, however, to listen carefully to how you are being answered. To finish the circle, to really be heard, you need to understand where the other person is coming from. If you both truly listen, your conversation will be an effective one.

#5 – Eye Contact

This is one of the most important parts of truly being heard. By making eye contact with someone you are demonstrating that you believe in what you are saying, that you are confident. It also signals to the other person that what you are saying is important and that you want them to truly hear you.

So there you go. 5 Ways to Really Be Heard. Try these techniques out on a friend, with a topic that isn’t very difficult. Practice it with your children. You will see how effective it is the more you use it.

 

Do you feel heard? Do you think these techniques might work for you and someone you have a hard time communicating with?

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Ways Being Happy Will Change Your Life, Even if You Don’t Believe it Can

So you are living a life in which you are not happy. I mean, you are FINE but really, you think, what is the big deal? Is anyone REALLY happy? Your life is busy and chaotic but you are fine, your job is fine, your family is fine.

I would argue that you are not so fine. Your happiness is not only affecting yourself but affecting those around you.

5 Ways Your Happiness Will Change Your Life & Help Others

 

#1 – Your behaviors will change

People who aren’t happy act not happy whether they know it or not. They are impatient, crabby, distant, distracted, quick to anger, easily frustrated. The list goes on and on. People who are happy, on the other hand, are rarely those things. They are far more patient, present and calm. They don’t live in a state of constant agitation, as an unhappy person does, so they aren’t quick to react negatively to a given situation.

#2 – Your attention span will improve

You might not know this but people who are unhappy have shorter attention spans. When you are unhappy it is very difficult to focus on things, big or small. The mind is constantly agitating and that makes it impossible to focus well on any one thing. People who are happy actually have better brain function than people who are unhappy which leads to better comprehension and retention.

#3 – You will smile

Smiling is an amazing gift to the human race. The physical act of smiling actually improves the smiler’s mood instantaneously. And if you smile at someone that person’s mood improves as well. So if you are happy you will smile more and you will smile at more people and they will be happier and you will be making the world a better place.

#4 – Your health will improve

People who are unhappy are unhealthy, again whether they know it or not. Unhappiness takes a dangerous toll on one’s heart, one’s blood pressure and one’s internal organs. People who aren’t happy don’t sleep well and lack of sleep can actually lead to insanity. One of my clients always had terrible tummy pains. When she resolved her problems with her husband her tummy pains vanished.

#5 – You will be more successful at work and at home

People who are unhappy are generally unable to give their all to anything, not their work nor their family. They are just too drained by their unhappiness to really thrive. People who are happy bring that into their lives everywhere. One of my clients found happiness and her relationship with her co-workers improved to the extent that she was chosen as employee of the month for the first time ever.

So there you are, 5 ways your happiness will change your life. If you think that you are the only person being affected by your unhappiness- you are wrong. If you do your work to reaching your dreams you will be happier and so will those around you.

For help becoming more happy and fulfilled with your life, please contact me through my website for a free first-time session.

How do you think your mood affects others? Can you see how bringing happiness into your life could change it?

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

The 5 Greatest Challenges to Reaching Your Dreams

What are the 5 Greatest Challenges to Reaching Your Dreams?

You know that you aren’t satisfied with your chaotic, jam-packed life. You wake up in the morning drained and dreading the day. You are impatient with your friends and co-workers because you have too much on your mind. You yell at your kids when bedtime gets delayed because you know that you have a bunch of things to do that you don’t really want to do. You are not happy and you want to change that.

In this article I will tell you the 5 greatest challenges to reaching your dreams. You will be surprised how simple it is to overcome these challenges!

5 Greatest Challenges Standing in the Way of Your Dreams

 

#1 – Not knowing what your dream is

We all know that we want to be “happy” but most of us cannot define what that really means.  So make a list. Be specific. Knowing what your goals are makes it much easier to get there.

#2 – Listening to what our brains are telling us

Our own brains can be our biggest enemy. Our brains will tell us that we can’t change, that we can’t achieve anything worthwhile, that all is hopeless. These are all lies but we are hardwired to believe them. Learning to not listen to what our brain is telling us is very important. I know that when I started thinking about being a life coach my brain tried to talk me out of it every day. I learned to tell it to just shut up.

#3 – Listening to what other people are telling us

We are, whether we ask for it or not, constantly inundated with other peoples opinions. What we shouldn’t do is believe everything that we are told. People bring their own experiences to a conversation…someone might have tried and failed at what you are trying to do so they will tell you that it’s hopeless. People aren’t going to stop telling you what to do but you can take it all with a grain of salt and do what YOU think you should do (taking into account #2 above).

#4 – Lack of accountability

Ok, think New Years Resolutions.  You make them on January 1st and have every intention of following through on them. By January 31st, or 15th, those intentions are gone. This is because you have no one to hold you accountable. No one to make sure that you follow through. Your friends can try but they have their own resolutions to let go of. You need accountability to follow through effectively.

#5 – Life

Yes, the chaotic, jam-packed and exhausting life that moms, and every woman, leads everyday. That life is what interfered with us reaching our dreams in the first place and what allows us to keep putting them off “until things quiet down.” I am here to tell you that things will never quiet down. You need to make time in your day to reach your dreams or you will never do so.

So there you go. The 5 Greatest Challenges to Reaching Your Dreams. They are pretty simple, don’t you think? Not one of these challenges is beyond your abilities to overcome. All it takes is some knowledge, intention and guidance.

Do you think that these challenges are something that you could overcome? Does any one seem more daunting than the rest? Do any of these challenges surprise you?

 

Overcoming these challenges in order to reach your dreams can be tough for many people, and it’s often much less challenging with some guidance. If you’d like help figuring out your dreams and paving a way to reach them, get in touch for your first free session with me.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!