How often do get up in the morning feeling stressed, maybe even tired, already without allowing us time to think about how you’d like things to go? We might even start the day with negative thought ‘here we go again another day of rushing, dragging kids out of bed, get them ready and out the door in time’. Without being aware of it we set ‘Negative Intentions’ that might end up being true!
This is partly because; what we choose to focus the most on will become reality and eventually part of ours and our kid’s daily habits and behaviours and before you know it, one of the kids has said or done the wrong thing, and you’ve reacted automatically with frustration, impatience, or rage. In other words, you’ve found yourself acting in a way you never intended.
But setting intentions for the day ahead will help you to connect your reaction, behaviour, response and attitude to what it is you hope to achieve.
Setting intentions can change your day, making it more likely that your words, actions and responses, especially during moments of difficulty, will be more mindful and compassionate and also make you a positive role model for your children to follow
Practice this first thing in the morning, before checking phones or email, and your day will be one step closer to being successful and how you really want it to be.1
- On waking, sit in your bed in a relaxed posture. Close your eyes and connect with the sensations of your seated body. Make sure your spine is straight, but not rigid.
- Take three long, deep, nourishing breaths, breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- Ask yourself: ‘What is my intention for this morning (or the day)?’ Use these prompts to help answer that question, as you think about your children and activities you will face
- How do I want the morning to look like? To feel like? What do I want to happen and see and feel more of? To make it more real try to visualise it; what do you see, hear, feel and do?
- How might I respond to my child(ren) this morning (today) to have the best impact? i.e. start with a positive, slow down, less nagging, choose your battles and commands, use more praise and less instructions etc.
- What quality in myself do I want to strengthen and develop? Calm, smile, choose my battles, love etc.
Check in with yourself throughout the day. Pause, take a breath, and revisit your intention(s). Notice, as you become more and more conscious of your intentions of the day, how you start reacting more in control and with purpose.
Set daily intentions with your children: Some kids might go to school with a sense of sadness, anger and maybe even negative intentions of what will happen. Try to help your children to start the day by ‘choose’ what will happen. On the drop of journey or at breakfast you can ask:
- How would you like the day to look like?
- What would you like to see happen today, realistically and positive (not, ‘that the school has burned down’)?
- What one thing can you do to make that more likely to happen?
This will help you and your children to set positive expectations for the morning and the day ahead and you are more likely to achieve it once you have set the intentions.
Set yourself up for Parenting Success from the very moment you open your eyes by becoming a more conscious, focused and mindful parent.