I’ve sure been busy as my private practice has changed, so I haven’t had much time to write on this blog. Many of the families I’m working with are addressing the issue of just what their family culture is, and what it is teaching their children about love, relationships, conflict and responsibility.
In the past I wrote about what I call the “3 Family Rules“. Let’s all examine just what rules, or “norms” we’ve established in our families and see if they are teaching our kiddos just what we are hoping too. Just what are the values we are trying to teach our children. In our family culture are we teaching that hard work and taking responsibility pays off, or are they to be avoided until the last minute?
If we are modeling for our children that getting work done “feels good” and that there is a reward for a “job well done” then they are more likely to follow with that pattern. If we show them that hard work is grueling and to be avoided until the last minute, then you can bet they will be putting off their homework/chores until the end.
I remember a teen I worked with years ago who talking about putting off her homework after school because she didn’t “feel like doing it”. I said “Right, because you really feel like doing it later”, which made her laugh. Just how often do we “feel like” doing our work? Sometimes yes, but often not. How we “feel” should not be the determining factor for our actions (yes, I know a therapist is supposed to be all about feelings, but not this one). I teach my clients and children to “Do what you know, not what you feel”. More on that soon.
I’ll be addressing these issues and more on this blog in the upcoming weeks. Please email me: firstname.lastname@example.org if you thoughts, suggestions or questions.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
William Strong, LCSW
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