Jun 15 2010

A Dad's Role in Raising Boys

With Father's Day around the corner, we dig into the topic of a father's role in raising boys.  David Thomas, who co-wrote the book "Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys" with Stephen James, joins us this morning to talk about this important role.

David Thomas is a therapist and director of counseling for men and boys at Daystar Counseling in Nashville, Tennessee. He lives in Nashville with his wife, Connie; daughter, Lily; and twins, Baker and Witt.

 

 

5 Stages of a boy's development

1) The Explorer (ages 2-4) - As soon as a boy can walk and talk, he begins exploring the edges of his world.

2) The Lover (ages 5-8) - A boy at this stage is more sensitive to the feelings and needs of others around him, and he begins to experience his first spiritual awakening.

3) The Individual (ages 9-12) - Boys at this stage are developing a stronger sense of self and have started to consider what it means to be a man.

4) The Wanderer (ages 13-17) - At this stage, a boy will careen back and forth between his desire for adult involvement and his desire to be left alone.

5) The Warrior (ages 18-22) - Boys at this stage are full of promise, purpose, and insight in the homestretch of a long journey.

Jun 14 2010

Summer Help for Parents

If your kids are already feeling restless this summer, take some tips from teachers on how to bring order to your home:

1) Set up Routines - Routines and standards help children know what's expected of them, so they have a better chance for success.

2) Aim High - Don't be afraid to set high goals and expectations for your kids to accomplish this summer.  When they hit them, they'll feel a sense of accomplishment and want to do more!

3) Streamline Your Discipline - Make sure your children know what you expect from them behavior wise.  Also make sure they know what the consequences are if they break the rules. 

4) Show Them You Care - The best teachers are firm, but loving.  Same goes for the best parents.  So, even though you have boundaries in place, love your children lavishly!

5) Take Advantage of Your Child's Desire to Please You - Children also love striving for goals, which gives you a wonderful opportunity to be their cheerleader. 

To dig deeper on these ideas and more, check out our friends at iMoms.

May 26 2010

20 Ways to Create Greater Marital Connection

20 ways to create greater Marital Connection

 

By Dwight Bain, Nationally Certified Counselor & Certified Life Coach

TENDER CONNECTION through ROMANCE

(These are the softer sides of relationship which can feel fun, exciting or fulfilling)

 

Physiclal- connecting physically 

 

Emotional- connecting through feelings, moods, attitudes or being on the same wave-length

 

Intellectual- connecting through the world of current events in news, blogs, magazines or books

 

Educational- connecting through shared learning experiences in classes, seminars or workshops

 

Aesthetic- connecting through experiences of beauty in fine art, craftsmanship, antiques or nature

 

Creative- connecting while sharing ideas about designing or developing projects together

 

Recreational- connecting through shared sports, hobbies, exercise, travel or theme parks

 

Social- connecting through parties or events at work, church or with friends & family

  

Entertainment- connecting through music, TV, films, concerts, dining or shopping

 

Humor- connecting through shared laughter, giggles, comedy or silliness in any situation

 

 

TOUGH CONNECTION through REALITY

(these are the harder sides of a relationship which may feel boring, difficult or challenging)

 

Work- connecting through common tasks, daily chores & responsibilities at home or in career

 

Time- connecting together with scheduling, planning, clocks, calendars or daily routines

 

Financial- connecting through shared values on budgeting, spending, saving or investing goals

 

Caregiving or Co-parenting- connecting through shared responsibility to care for others (or pets)

 

Conflict- connecting through differences in strongly held beliefs with mutual respect or admiration

 

Crisis- connecting through problems, pressures or painful events, especially in reaching out to others

 

Commitment-connecting through the shared belief of honoring marital vows as sacred promises

 

Spiritual- connecting through shared religious traditions, beliefs, ethics, values & worship styles

 

Communication- connecting verbally or nonverbally to share the ‘real you’ or listening to your partner

 

Trust- connecting through shared feelings of respect, honesty, integrity or confidence in your mate

 

Notice the differences between these 2 types of Marital Connection:

 

 

Tender Connection is about Romance & Chemistry

 

  • Media images tend to define the ultimate degree of love as feeling happy with that person you are spending time with right now instead of investing into a partner for life
  • If you only have a tender connection in your relationship, it leaves a potential gap open for a married person to essentially function as a ‘single person’ with the mindset of serving self over their spouse, resulting in a person feeling very, very alone.
  • View this as the “Me-My-I” mindset of the self-absorbed or pleasure seekers that avoid taking responsibility for their behavior or blame shift problems away from their selfish decisions to find a reason to show that it’s really your fault that they are the way they are or do the things they do.

 

Tough Connection is about Reality & Consequences

 

  • Biblical images of defining the ultimate degree of love as choosing to reach out to build a long term relationship as married “Partners” during the fun or frustrating times of life
  • If you have included the reality of a tough connection in your relationship, it closes the gap of being a self-serving or single person in the marriage, since the mindset and goal is of building marital unity.
  • View this as the “We-Us-Our” mindset of building a relationship together with each person taking ownership and responsibility for their part of the marriage as they serve and give to one another in love.

If this article helped you, you are invited to share it with your own list at work or church, forward it to friends and family or post it on your own site or blog. Just leave it intact and do not alter it in any way. Any links must remain in the article.

 

Please include the following paragraph in your reprint."Reprinted with permission from the LifeWorks Group weekly eNews, (Copyright, 2004-2010), To subscribe to this valuable weekly resource visit www.LifeWorksGroup.org " 

 

 

May 24 2010

For Parents of Grads - Dwight Bain

Life Coach Dwight Bain  is on with us this morning with tips on helping parents transition through the different seasons of their child's life - especially those who have a child graduating this year.  Here are Dwight's "Parenting Stages and strategies necessary to build strong kids":

 

Birth to puberty, (ages 0-12)-

 

Kids need a 'Caretaker' who can teach and help with daily tasks while the child gradually is learning these skills from their parent through positive role modeling, especially in the important areas of self-discipline and responsibility. Other ways for a child to grow in confidence and strength during these years is to help them find social connection and friends through school activities, church groups, youth sports or scouting. This higher level of involvement also connects kids with other healthy adults who can help kids learn even more because of teachers, coaches, and pastors who are investing into their young lives as they grow to the next level of maturity and future success. 

 

Puberty to College Years, (12-21)-

The parenting strategy to use during the teen years is a combination of part Counselor and part Coach to help guide through the emotional issues of building relationships and dealing with hurt feelings; while balancing the tasks of learning to deal with difficulties in life and making wise educational or career choices. Psychologist John Trent calls this process ‘soft love mixed with hard love’, (For more on this concept of parenting, check out “The Two Sides of Love” published by Focus on the Family Publishing, 1999)

 

College years to Adulthood, (21-30)-

 

I believe that we always need our parents- it’s just that the need changes as we grow older. Little kids need a parent to help with personal hygiene, teens need their parents to help them develop healthy habits and by this stage young adults need honest advice and direction. These years are a great time for the parent/adult-child relationship to prosper since the young adult is out on their own dealing with life, yet still needs a 'Consultant' to bounce ideas off of as their build a life independent of their parents to firmly establish a life of their own. 

 

I want you to know that millions of other parents have successfully launched their child from birth toward adulthood and you can too. There is a sign in the launch control room of the Kennedy Space Center that says it well, listen…

 

“It takes a team- to launch a dream.”

 

Know that you are not alone in this process. There are hundreds of resources available at our website as well as links to dozens of other groups driven by the desire to help you experience the great joy of watching a dream take flight, as well as provide the tools and training to help you if you’ve already crashed to get past the nightmare and not be afraid to dream again about what your son or daughter could be when they launch into a life of their own.

 

Reprint Permission- If this article helped you, you are invited to share it with your own list at work or church, forward it to friends and family or post it on your own site or blog. Just leave it intact and do not alter it in any way. Any links must remain in the article.

 

Please include the following paragraph in your reprint."Reprinted with permission from the LifeWorks Group weekly eNews, (Copyright, 2004-2010), To subscribe to this valuable weekly resource visit www.LifeWorksGroup.org "