Try Again Tomorrow

I’m re-reading one of my favorite books, Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, and one part particularly struck me in my reading last night.
It’s when main character Fanny’s grave, serious uncle agrees to allow Fanny to do something he would rather she did not: get up early after being up very late (so she can say goodbye to her brother, William, who leaves in the morning).
After much discussion Fanny’s uncle, Sir Thomas, fondly says “well, well.” And Fanny knows she has been given permission to be present at this farewell breakfast.

It got me thinking on the ways that we give, or withhold, our permission.

Oftentimes it’s a whiny, wheedling, “pleeeeease” that gets our attention, and so we give in reluctantly.

Or we give a firm “no,” knowing full well we’re going to get major pushback.

Sometimes we find ourselves giving an exasperated, irritated “fine, have it your way.”

And sometimes it’s a gentle and indulgent, smiling and fond “fine, have it your way.”

For those last two it’s the same exact words. But the way they are stated makes all the difference.

Try Again Tomorrow

Last week was a pretty tough week around here. (Heard on #AmWriting: “I re-read for comfort.” – Jessica Lahey; this is exactly why I am rereading Mansfield Park.)

There were health problems, kid tensions, financial concerns – all the same things that you probably confront in your own life.

In the midst of it, I thought about the post that a mom I work with in our private coaching community for parents posted last summer, a success story called “Try Again Tomorrow.”

In this post Jen wrote of this phrase, which helped her discipline her 4-year-old daughter – without losing her patience – in a public place, when the girl was roughhousing. (My favorite thing about this post is when Jen identifies herself as “Calm Me.”)

I love how she writes of the success she found in helping her daughter understand that some days, we screw up. Each day we confront and deal with problems, and some days we simply handle this better than other days.

Some days things will work out, and sometimes not so much.

So what can we do then, if we screw up? If we don’t handle the problems today very well? If things don’t work out the way we wanted?

We can try again tomorrow.

Reading the post I come away feeling like Jen is giving both her daughter, and herself, permission. It’s as if she’s giving a fond and gentle “well, well.” We can always try again tomorrow.

Giving Ourselves Permission

I thought about this post during my tough week and realized, I can give myself permission:
– To not finish everything on my to-do list
– To eat extra helpings of Nutella and frosting occasionally
– To worry, especially about ongoing things that people tell you “oh, don’t worry about that.”

Giving myself permission to do these “bad” things means that I am living my life. I’m acknowledging the hit.

It gives me fuel for when, inevitably, I wake up next morning ready to tackle the problem, or at least look at it from a fresh perspective.

I think that’s the tricky part, the getting back on track. One day of Nutella and frosting is fine – seven days, or fourteen days of it is a binge.
It feels ironic to me that giving myself permission – giving myself this one day – is what limited this indulgence to just one day.

Had I beaten myself up over that one day, and told myself “there’s no point in trying to get on track now, just give up and go get some more Nutella,” I’d probably still be trying to climb out from under empty jars of this addictive stuff.

But instead saying “it’s okay. Try again tomorrow,” took the pressure off.

So, this week I’m leaving you with a question:

Where in your daily life can you ease off the pressure, either of your child, or yourself? Click here and let me know!

It may not be obvious, especially at first. But keep looking. I’m wishing a success story for you in which the words “try again tomorrow” play a big part.

Keep reading below for What’s up on the podcast/on YouTube/in the Facebook group… And for the picture of the week!

Wishing you a wonderful parenting week!
Cheers,
Karen

What’s up on the podcast this week:
We’re talking about 4 ways you can help your child make a friend.
Click weturnedoutokay.com/275 to listen!

What’s up on my YouTube channel this week:
Extending on this theme, the live YouTube (I do one every Thursday) is called
“4 ways to help your child make friends” and it is available at the link just above! Or,
Check out my YouTube channel by clicking here.

What’s up in the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group this week:
Each Monday at 10:30 a.m. EST, I do a superquick Facebook live that I call “Magic Words for Parents”… This week I shared one way to help your child make a friend. Click here to join the Facebook group : )

Picture of the week:

This was one proud kid, the day he and his dad finished the tree fort! We notice that it gets used a lot more frequently when friends come over, which made me think of what’s up this week in the WTOO universe, where we are talking about lots of ways you can help your child make friends.

Cheers!

PS – If you’re enjoying this Weekly Parenting Newsletter, sign up to receive it in your inbox, or forward it to a friend who needs a parenting boost today.

 

How to get quality childcare: A masterclass | Podcast Episode 272

If you’ve ever struggled with less-than-quality childcare, whether in daycare or in a school setting, today’s episode is for you!

Because you are not alone. I’ve been working closely with people whose childcare providers do inscrutable things – one mom tells of an “aggression journal” her 3-year-old son’s childcare teachers are keeping about him! – and another who found her most recent parent-teacher conference frightening and overwhelming.

Which is why today I’m bringing you, in audio format, the class I taught just last week, all about “How to get quality childcare.”

During this master class I share:
1) The three most important keys to finding the best childcare
2) One crucial factor that can hold you back from getting quality childcare
3) The questions you should – and should not – ask potential and current childcare providers
4) An Open House Tour of the private coaching community where quality childcare has been our in-depth focus for the last 3 months
5) A Case Study of one class attendee, Amanda, and her 3-year-old son’s struggles with nap time at daycare

I hope it’s super helpful as your child moves out into the wider world, in daycare, preschool, or school!

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/272 for:

And thank you so much for listening!

Temper Tantrums and Potty Training:

Today I share about two helpful free guides I offer.
While the podcast is long-form – your opportunity to look into the mind of a child development expert – the free guides are super quick.

You can watch the video, read the checklist, and immediately handle the temper tantrums or get started with potty training (depending on which guide you choose : )

  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to handle every temper tantrum
  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to successfully potty train your child
  • Want to receive valuable ideas and tips on parenting, without either free guide above? Click here for my weekly parenting newsletter!

Continue reading “How to get quality childcare: A masterclass | Podcast Episode 272”

3 Ways for you to be less stressed | Podcast episode 253

If only every day could be about pajamas and Lego dinosaurs.

Today I share how the stress I was under 7 1/2 years ago resulted in a lifelong tendon disorder.

I was so busy running our household and putting everyone else first, I did not pay attention to my health.

I really want you to learn from my mistake.

Today’s show focuses on how our stress isn’t just bad for us. It’s bad for our kids, too.

We also dig into the stresses of “intensive” parenting (a.k.a. helicopter or lawnmower parenting). And as you’ll see, that form of parenting stresses everybody out.

(Know what else stresses everybody out? Potty training, and temper tantrums… During today’s break I share about a free guide I offer for each of these stressors:

  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to handle every temper tantrum
  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to successfully potty train your child)

In this episode I offer three ways for you to be less stressed, not just now as we get into the holiday season (and everyone is pretty well at the end of their rope) but about how you can be less stressed over the long haul.

It’s Part 3 of the “how to raise successful, fulfilled, happy people” series, and I hope it helps you enjoy the time you spend with your littles!

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/253 for:

  • A cheat sheet on the 3 ways you can alleviate stress
  • Links to the articles I quote from today
  • What’s up in the We Turned Out Okay universe, including tons of free resources : )
  • The video of the week: “Good behavior at meals, good behavior at the park”

And thank you so much for listening! Continue reading “3 Ways for you to be less stressed | Podcast episode 253”

Combating Fear: A Conversation with Mom, Quilter, and Fighter for Justice Cathleen Dinsmore | Podcast Episode 249

Here is Cathleen’s beautiful quilt.

Do you sometimes feel like you are raising your family in mighty frightening times?
So do I.

That’s why, when I learned about the thing of beauty this week’s guest created to combat fear, I knew I had to bring her on the show!

Mom, quilter, poet, and personal friend Cathleen Dinsmore recently created an amazing quilt-and-poem combination. The quilt is breathtaking – and, combined with the poem, fosters conversation around fear, and hope, and justice.

At weturnedoutokay.com you can view Cathleen’s amazing quilt, read the beautiful poem,

And here is the poem Cathleen wrote; it accompanies the quilt and brings this whole idea into sharper focus (at least for me).

and prepare to be inspired by the incredible impact one person can have on alleviating fear and inspiring hope.

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/249 for:

  • A look at Cathleen’s racial justice quilt, her accompanying poem, and TONS of links that come up in today’s conversation
  • What’s up in the We Turned Out Okay universe, including tons of free resources : )
  • The video of the week: “Helping when Halloween scares your young child”

And thank you so much for listening! Continue reading “Combating Fear: A Conversation with Mom, Quilter, and Fighter for Justice Cathleen Dinsmore | Podcast Episode 249”

What Gets Us Through Tough Times: Talking with Diane Hessan, Mom, Entrepreneur, and Columnist | Podcast Episode 246

Diane Hessan always knew she wanted to work full-time, while raising her daughters. Today she shares what that was really like, and how her life’s work prepared her to fulfill a super important role in today’s frightening and demoralizing political climate.

Nowadays, Diane speaks daily with 500 American voters. These are people from every area of the country, every walk of life, every creed, every color. And as she connects with them Diane is learning important lessons that she takes into her own life.

Listen to our conversation today to discover what these lessons are, so you can enjoy your life, and be helpful to those around you at the same time!

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/246 for:

  • Links that come up in our conversation today
  • What’s up in the We Turned Out Okay universe, including tons of free resources : )
  • The 3 most important things to remember from today’s conversation

And thank you so much for listening! Continue reading “What Gets Us Through Tough Times: Talking with Diane Hessan, Mom, Entrepreneur, and Columnist | Podcast Episode 246”

How do we handle big parental pressures? Talking with KJ Dell’Antonia, author of the forthcoming book How to be a Happier Parent (podcast episode 237)

Talking with returning champion KJ Dell’Antonia

is always a pleasure, and this episode is maybe my favorite conversation with her yet!

KJ has got a book coming out later this month, and if you’re feeling the pressures of parenting, you are going to LOVE her book, How to be a Happier Parent.

Like so many of my favorite conversations, this one zooms around and goes in directions that I didn’t envision when we sat down to talk.

And every direction offers something valuable for you to take into your parenting life.

We talk about:

  • Why parents need something of their own – something separate from your kids – to enjoy
  • How (and why) after-school activities and sports got so crazy
  • KJ’s two key steps to handling the big, bad pressures on us parents.

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/237 for the TONS of links that come up in our conversation, and also to read more about KJ’s 2-step process to deal with those pressures…

And thank you so much for listening!

[Please note: Magic Words for Parents, our series of quick phrases to help you say the right thing even in the toughest parenting moments, is on vacation until September 10… Click here for the playlist of past Magic Words in YouTube, and click here for the EXTRA Magic Words videos … get exclusive access by becoming a We Turned Out Okay Patreon patron.] Continue reading “How do we handle big parental pressures? Talking with KJ Dell’Antonia, author of the forthcoming book How to be a Happier Parent (podcast episode 237)”

“There’s just not enough time to do everything” – Part 2 of the Taming Weeknight Chaos Series! (Podcast Episode 233)

Welcome to Part 2 of our Taming the Weeknight Chaos series!

Click here for the FREE Tame the Weeknight Chaos Guide, including Video & Checklist

Today we address a huge challenge in every parent’s efforts to create enjoyable, smooth family weeknights: there’s just not enough time to get everything done.

In fact today is a troubleshooting episode, because we tackle that problem – and also the “I’m always the bad cop” problem that comes up for tons of parents!

You’ll find this episode really helpful if weeknight chaos is a problem for you.

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/233 for:

A video covering these two common problems with weeknights;

And: A free 6-Point Checklist and Video Guide to help you truly enjoy weeknights with your kids

Happy listening : ) Continue reading ““There’s just not enough time to do everything” – Part 2 of the Taming Weeknight Chaos Series! (Podcast Episode 233)”

How we parents can stop feeling anxious, with author and dad Charlie Hoehn (Podcast Episode 230)

I’m so happy to share

this wonderful conversation with Charlie Hoehn, dad, podcaster, person who helps people publish books, and (most important for our conversation today) author.

Charlie’s book, Play It Away, shares his experience with soul-sucking anxiety, and the simple cure he found.

The thing about this cure is, it’s something humans all do naturally, and it’s as important to us as sleep.

But yet we often grow up and forget how important it is; the lack of this crucial element in Charlie’s life is what caused his terrible anxiety.

If you’re feeling anxious, you are going to love our conversation.

And if you’re not feeling anxious, you’ll still love it because it will help you see the importance of this element in your child’s life.

Shout out this week to new patrons of We Turned Out Okay: Steve, and Sue, who are supporting WTOO in Patreon and getting access to exclusive content, like EXTRA Magic Words for Parents, and Behind-the-Scenes videos!

You can get these great extras too, just by going to Patreon.com/weturnedoutokay!

This week’s Magic Words for Parents video shares a quick phrase you can use to help when your child is feeling overwhelmed by too many choices. Watch by clicking here to join the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group, or by clicking here to watch in YouTube, where there’s a whole playlist of Magic Words!

Thank you for listening to today’s episode!
Key links and show notes – and THE CUTEST picture of Charlie with his little girl! – at weturnedoutokay.com/230.

Cheers! Continue reading “How we parents can stop feeling anxious, with author and dad Charlie Hoehn (Podcast Episode 230)”

The 2 Most Dangerous Words in a Parent’s Vocabulary (Podcast Episode 219)

Kids. Sometimes, it’s a good thing they’re cute.

Today’s podcast episode shares one simple change you can make that will affect how your child behaves.

Read on, and listen to today’s episode, to learn this simple change yourself and start using it to truly enjoy the time you spend with your kids!

Working with parents of young children,

one phrase comes up again and again – one really dangerous phrase.

It’s dangerous because it perpetuates bad behavior from our kids, which none of us want… Yet, it is really hard not to use it.

You probably use this phrase yourself; I know I have!

Here’s the thing: we do not want to ASK our kids “would you like to stop hitting your sister now?”

Instead, we want them to simply STOP hitting their sister.

(Or whatever thing they’re doing right now that is potentially harmful/driving us crazy/making us question our life choices : )

Today I share:
– Exactly what the two most dangerous words in a parent’s vocabulary are
– Why these words get used so often
What you can say instead for good behavior from your child

Today’s episode helps you get past the bad behavior so you can fulfill your ultimate goal of truly enjoying family time!

 

Read more about these two dangerous words and what to say instead…
Find every back episode of the We Turned Out Okay podcast…
Sign up for the 3 Secrets of Happy Parenting Class…
All at weturnedoutokay.com/219.

Happy listening! Continue reading “The 2 Most Dangerous Words in a Parent’s Vocabulary (Podcast Episode 219)”

Podcast Episode 213: The 3 Secrets of Happy Parenting

Welcome! To listen to today’s episode, scroll all the way down to the bottom of this post and hit the triangular “play” button. Enjoy the show!

 If you are feeling like you’re barely getting through the day without screaming at your toddler or preschooler, this episode is for you!

In it I introduce a live, online class I am teaching, called “The 3 Secrets of Happy Parenting.” The class features three secrets of happy parenting that I have identified.

These 3 secrets help parents just like you:

– End the fear and dread that can accompany family time with young children.

– Learn the tools to transform their kids’ behavior from bad to good.

– Enjoy spending time with their young children.

For details go to weturnedoutokay.com/secrets : )

 

 A special note about this episode

Today’s episode is all about storytelling, and in it I get to share about a live storytelling event that 20-time winner of the Husband of the Year award, Benjamin Kolp, and I did just a few nights ago!

Here are two stories – really, two halves of the same story – for your viewing pleasure:

 

Today, I share the story of my own frightening and persistent question, a real biggie which brought with it a lot of parental guilt – but yet this question simply wouldn’t leave me alone…

I share how I successfully addressed it, and I introduce a minicourse that can help you address it, too.

This minicourse is all ready for you over at weturnedoutokay.com!

It’s called The Three Secrets of Happy Parenting, and today’s episode is also the intro to the course.

Sign up by going to weturnedoutokay.com/213!

And thank you so much for listening : ) Continue reading “Podcast Episode 213: The 3 Secrets of Happy Parenting”