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As parents or caregivers, we want our children to grow strong and healthy. We also want them to have healthy confidence and self-esteem. Sometimes, despite our best intentions, we may do things that actually hurt our children’s confidence and self-esteem instead of helping it.
Here are five ways parents can kill children’s confidence:

. Comparing them to others: 
Instead of motivating your child to improve, comparisons will most likely make your child have low self-esteem. It is never a good idea to draw comparisons between siblings or those within their peer group. Children need to know that they are accepted and loved for who they are, not because they are better or not as “good” as another. You do not want them to feel like they have to act like someone else to get your approval.

. Always solving their problems for them: 
Constantly solving a child’s problems or correcting their mistakes deprives them of a chance to learn, mature and develop self-confidence. This will ruin their chances of developing the skills and confidence required to navigate through life. When children solve their problems, even if they do not get it right, it is a great way to learn problem-solving skills.
Also, are you in the habit of speaking up for your child even when they are old enough to speak for themselves? This can make your child become withdrawn and lose confidence in their ability to speak for themselves. Allow your child to express themselves both in private and in public.

. Always shouting and nagging about their mistakes
Shouting at your children when helping them out with homework, or teaching them a skill can kill their confidence. As a parent, you have to be patient with your child. Making mistakes is an integral part of a child’s learning and growth process. At some point when you ask a question, they will be too scared to answer because of your shouting habit. Always correct them with care and make them feel that they can do it. But don’t over-pamper them. Teaching your child to accept mistakes and failures positively is a good way to go about things. There is a great deal of value in recognizing when you make a mistake and then correcting it.

. Making fun of their physical differences:
Many parents want their kids to be physically and emotionally flawless. They often view their children’s physical and emotional differences as imperfections to be corrected and/or changed. However, this has the opposite effect and gives the child a permanently poor body and self-image. Some young children have become anorexic just to escape being called “fat” while others become obese to avoid being called “skinny winky.” Most often than not, namecalling affects children’s self-esteem. These days, teenage girls cannot wait to turn 18, so that they can go in for surgery.

Focus on building your child up and preaching positivity. Instead of pointing out their flaws, help them develop their positive characteristics. Teach your child that no one is flawless and that everyone makes mistakes.

. Living your life through them and planning their careers:
There are parents who plan their children’s lives from birth to marriage to career and beyond based on what they want for themselves. They believe that they are making their kids’ lives easier and less stressful. However, they are doing irreparable damage and making their kids quite dependent and indecisive regarding the simplest life choices. Many people are living their parents’ lives, not their own authentic lives, much to their regret.

It is okay to set some boundaries and steer your child in a direction you’d like to see them go in, but let them have some independence. Support the choices they make and the lifestyles they want to live.

. Denying them your attention:
Children need and crave love and affection that only their parents can give. Not being there for your children creates “emotional neediness” in them. Some of these children crave and look for a “mother” and “father” figure in other people which could sometimes lead to abuse. Be intentional about spending time with your children. This might be difficult since we all live busy, stressful lives and have endless concerns as parents. However, give your children all your attention, some of the time! Whenever you have time to spend with your children, ensure that they have all your attention. The occasional hugs, kisses and “I love you” should also not be forgotten.

The first time I heard the term ‘bullshit rules’, I remember thinking to myself ‘wait, bullshit what?’ BULLSHIT-RULES. You know what they are? They are these set of unwritten rules that the world expects us to live by but when you really break them down, you find out that the rule is really just bullshit. So Vishen Lakhiani (Founder of MindValley) decided to term them Bullshir-Rules and I’m going to attempt to whole idea to you.

Man, by being is programmable and I’ll tell you what I mean in a sec. If you strip down the things you generally hold to be true, to be your beliefs – you will notice that most of the things you believe are not a result of your conscious or rational choosing. You have grown to believe many things through programming, imitation and indoctrination. You basically believe a lot of things because you were told at some point in your life that that’s just how life is.

This would have been alright if the beliefs passed on were consistently beneficial, but this is not always the case – matter of fact, it rarely is.

As infants we are born without beliefs, with no real concept of right or wrong, good or bad. Society tells us what is acceptable and what is not. Culture determines what length a boys’ hair should be, parents dictate who they expect us to be friends with, and what they think we should study. Religion is clear on who makes a satisfactory spouse and who does not.

If you really really think about it, we are largely a product of our programming, yes there are exceptions but by and large many of us are still living the lives that someone somewhere told us to live.

We have taken our definitions of what is acceptable and what is not from people other than ourselves imagining that they know more about our lives than we”.

Now I understand the place of parents, teachers and others in authority over us and they are very much needed but we must not be oblivious of the fact that it is very easy for them to pass on their beliefs to us; whether these beliefs are necessary for our growth or not. To be really honest, a lot of their beliefs are bullshit and you really need to chuck them, hold on to what serves you only.

The thing with beliefs is that they are fact. Whatever you believe becomes ‘fact’ for you so it is possible that you can live your whole life living someone else’s beliefs and experiencing the life that goes with it. How uncool.

If your beliefs aren’t even yours, then are you yourself at all? Makes you wonder why there’s so many people running around with no sense of identity, no knowledge of who they are. They have relied on others to decide who they are and therefore who they can become – it is a tragedy really.

But NOT today!!!

Today we are crushing all bullshit rules and making up new rules to replace them. I do apologize for all the swear words in this post if it hurts your senses, there are just a few more to come and we’ll be done – I promise.

To attempt a definition – a bullshit rule is a belief about yourself or life that you have always believed to be true even if it isn’t necessarily. It’s mostly negative and a result of unintentional or intentional indoctrination. Here are a few bullshit rules we need to get rid of today.

Bull-Shit rule 1

To make money, you have to work really really really hard. Hard work is important but don’t get stuck thinking that unless you sweat and toil, you cannot have the success or the money you want. Just look around you, too many examples to be a fluke.

Bull-Shit rule 2

To be a happy and successful woman, you need a man – Nobody should ever NEED anyone other than themselves to make them happy. You don’t NEED anyone, you might want ‘em because really what would life be without men…heheehe..

Bull-Shit rule 3

I need to go to school to make any money – Education is important, but you do not always need the four walls of a room to learn. You 100% percent need education but it does not have to come in the form of a college degree. Your knowledge is not less valuable just because it didn’t come with a certificate. You feel me?

Bull-Shit rule 4

She is less of a woman because she did not physically birth a child – This is bullshit and that’s all I’m saying about that.

I know how sensitive this is and I say it with utmost consideration for all concerned but it’s just not true and it’s painful to see people feel less than themselves for something they have no control over. This one pains me on a personal level. Chuck this BS rule quickly.

Bull-Shit rule 5

Money is the root of evil – if you believe this then you will stay far away from money. How do you think something is evil and keep trying to get it? It’s counter-intuitive. Money is great, its what you do with it that makes it either evil or good.

Bull-Shit rule 6

I can’t make money from doing what I really love – oohhh, watch me and you can too. Might take a little time and cost a lot but it is possible. There are too many life examples for it not to be possible.

I can go on but where’s the fun in that? Get in on the gist and let us know what bull shit rules you will be chucking today. Remember if it doesn’t serve you, chuck it. *singing* …bad energy stay far away…

About Olachi Olatunji

Hey, my name is Olachi and I like to refer to myself as a ‘thinking enthusiast.’

I love a few things, number one of them being learning and number two would be spreading.

I believe in the power of right thinking to transform lives and as a result; I enjoy spreading knowledge, inspiring thinking and encouraging movement.

I however am not a very serious person so please don’t expect to find me in a suit… In a crowd with beating music though, find me somewhere in the middle – moving to the beat and filling my soul with joy.

Olachi Olatunji

Chief Curator,

#TKOH

http://www.theknowledgeofhow.com/

#Part 3

When you look at your kid or your ward or someone younger that you ae somehow responsible for, you want them to look at you are be proud. You always want them to be able to see in you the perfect example. Ask any parent – what drives you? You’d hear stuff like, “I want to give my kids a good example, I want them to look up to me, I want to show them that they can achieve anything they set their minds to” and who wouldn’t want to do or be all these things?

But parents, you need to take some pressure off yourself too. Even Superman needs a little Clark Kent time once in a while – we like to think we can do and be everything for our kids’ but the truth is – we can’t. Guess what? the kids don’t expect us to either.

I remember growing up, my mum was everything rolled into one and some days I just wanted her to rest. I saw what it was doing to her attempting all questions with 5 children every single day. Not easy.

I would understand if she could not be there for me at a time because she just needed to do HER but she never let up and many of you might never let up either. Maybe it’s how we were made – who knows?

Here’s what I want you to take from this –

Every parent wants to be their childs’ hero, they want to be the one their kids look up to but trust me when I tell you it’s better to just be honest with them. Tell the truth, they will understand.

Sometimes as parents we have to make tough decisions – sometimes we need to live away from our families for work or school or whatever. It sucks but telling them the truth helps them understand instead of just cope.

So, you can’t make the school game this week. Say, “Baby, I can’t make your school game on Friday ok – I am really sorry and I promise I’ll try to be at your next one – I’ll get your teacher to record it for me and we’ll watch it together at home, ok?”

 

That is so much better than promising them you’ll show up when you know – you really won’t be there.

Everyone loves a hero, but no one loves a liar and if you can’t be a hero, at least be honest.

 

You will disappoint them more by your lies rather than your truths. The truth you tell might hurt for the moment but the pain of lies can last a lifetime.

I was talking with a friend one time who said when he was 5, his parents dropped him off at boarding school and said they’d be right back. The next time he saw them was 3 months later at the end of the school term. I cannot even begin to imagine what that must have felt like. He cried every day for days until it became clear that neither mum nor dad was turning up and so at age 5, he was forced to become a man.

You might say – his parents probably just didn’t know how to explain it to a 5-year old and I think that too but did not-explaining make it easier on the child or on the parents?

Please stop trying to have it all figured out, stop trying to be so strong for them –Tell your kids the truth. Tell them in a way they can understand – they will and will love you for it too. You will demonstrate to them that honesty does not always feel good, but when the choice is presented – you should choose honesty over heroism, always.

You know one of the things I love most about being a parent – it’s that I get to hold right now in my hands what could be a crucial part of shaping a future generation and even if I cannot change the world myself – the idea that I can raise someone who CAN is hands down THE most amazing and terrifying part of being a parent. For me!

We don’t know everything, but we know some things. Let’s do the best we can with the best we know.

Think about how you’re going to choose honesty with your kids even if what you have to tell them is really difficult.

The End.

About Olachi Olatunji

Hey, my name is Olachi and I like to refer to myself as a ‘thinking enthusiast.’

I love a few things, number one of them being learning and number two would be spreading.

I believe in the power of right thinking to transform lives and as a result; I enjoy spreading knowledge, inspiring thinking and encouraging movement.

I however am not a very serious person so please don’t expect to find me in a suit… In a crowd with beating music though, find me somewhere in the middle – moving to the beat and filling my soul with joy.

 

Olachi Olatunji

Chief Curator,

THEKNOWLEDGEOFHOW Blog.

#TKOH

 

This is part 2 of a 3-part series so if you haven’t read part 1, you really should so you can get the flow of the series. But we all know you are just going to go ahead and keep reading this anyway…*side-eye* Don’t worry – we know “ourselves”.

Parenting isn’t easy, we are still trying to figure out how to be adults and suddenly we are supposed to raising entire individuals – no pressure huhn?

Dealing with all of this can be a lot and it is my personal experience that a lot of younger parents and even older parents are frustrated half the time. We need to find smarter ways to deal with all the pressure that accompanies life and not pass on that pressure to our kids.

You really should read part 1 of this Here, don’t say I didn’t try.

When it comes to raising kids, everyone seems to think they know how you can do it and they are very quick to tell you, whether you ask for their opinion or not.

The problem here is that a lot of this ‘advice’ is mostly methods and very little principles. Methods don’t work on each kid in the same way or even at all – so how does all of this leave you?

Yeah, I know the feeling – the first thing I said you could do in #part1 was ‘Hold your center’. The second thing you should know is big brother is always watching but he’s not who you think he is…

Be very aware that Big Brother is ALWAYS watching

I’ve got 2 kids, one of them is 5 and the other is 2. Recently, I noticed my 5-year-old yelling at my 2-year old “come here, pick up your toys, get down from the table – NOW”, complete with this huge scowl as he peered down at his sister. He was being a big brother and correcting her but what was scary was how he was doing it. He was doing it just like me, word for word, action for action.

He was using the exact same words I used on or at him and in the exact same tone (I was mortified, o dear – when I asked for a mini me – I didn’t mean for him to copy wrong traits too).

Have you ever met a kid you thought was so polite only to meet their parent(s) and go – “oh, I see why” – because they are just as polite. It’s not a coincidence. Its ‘monkey see, monkey do’ especially when kids are so young.

Children rarely do as you say, they do as you do. Heck, even adults mimic behavior. Truth is whether your child is very young or much older, she is still learning by observing your behavior. It is the design of nature for humans to learn first by observing.

Your kids are watching you. They see how you treat others, how you speak, and in the most unlikely of times they will replay your behavior to you much to your amazement. Just in case you haven’t figured it out yet, children are the real big brother.

They will copy your eating habits, copy how you treat yourself; they will learn esteem from you. They will learn how to treat others by the way you treat them. This is why YELLING and SHOVING are just soooo unproductive. You teach them not to be violent and at the minutest slip-up, you whip out the back-hand or scream at the top of your voice. Yet you expect these creatures to magically take on a calm, non-violent demeanor. How?

You constantly ask your child to do better, to be better; isn’t it high time you start taking your own advice?

Knowing that big brother always watches shouldn’t make you paranoid or make you feel bad. No.  Don’t get overwhelmed. No matter how long you have been a parent you are still learning – its ok. Do the best you can.

Model the behavior you want to see in your kids. Show them how to act and how to behave and when you slip up, show them how you recover.

How you choose to do that is up you, just remember you are showing them how to behave by the way you behave, especially to them.

Now that you are aware, what is that one thing you know you do a hell of a lot of but you really don’t want your kid to copy? You know what to do.

Look out for #part3, last but certainly not the least of the series. It might make you cry.

About Olachi Olatunji

Hey, my name is Olachi and I like to refer to myself as a ‘thinking enthusiast.’

I love a few things, number one of them being learning and number two would be spreading.

I believe in the power of right thinking to transform lives and as a result; I enjoy spreading knowledge, inspiring thinking and encouraging movement.

I however am not a very serious person so please don’t expect to find me in a suit… In a crowd with beating music though, find me somewhere in the middle – moving to the beat and filling my soul with joy.

Olachi Olatunji

Chief Curator,

THEKNOWLEDGEOFHOW Blog.

#TKOH

 

Part 1 of 3

If there’s any area that receives more unsolicited advice than dating, its parenting.

Everyone seems to have an idea how you can do it better – Don’t pick him up, don’t cuddle them too much, you don’t cuddle them enough, hug them every day, don’t hug them every day, spank them, don’t spank them — which is it?

At some point, you have probably also dealt with the seeming hap-hazard behavior of children themselves; all of a sudden, they decide its either they get this toy, or they die – *cue tantrum*. Not to mention all the people around you giving you the eye, silently judging you (huh, story of my life).

Add all of this to the fact that you are busy!

You work, you run businesses, you volunteer, and you speak at your kids’ school. You have a lot going on and life is crazy enough already but everyone seems to always have ideas and opinions about how you should be doing it, how you should be parenting.

The problem here is that a lot of this ‘advice’ is mostly methods and very little principles. Methods don’t work on each kid in the same way or even at all – so how does all of this leave you?

F-R-U-S-T-R-A-T-E-D, Tired and confused.

Here, here now, the first thing I’d say in response to this is “Hold your center”. Hold your what?

Well, your center, your middle, your core.

Here’s how to hold it

You can’t control every move of your child and to attempt to do this will be suicide. So why do you keep trying? What can you do instead? Focus on the center.

A friend of mine told me of the only day he his Father hit him – he had lied about something silly – stealing a fork or something like that. His Father found out and gave him the beating of his life. Now, if you are where I’m from, you know exactly what this means.

That was the only time in his 40 years on earth that he recalls his father had EVER hit him. It’s clear that the center for his dad was NOT raising a liar.

He would let many things go but lying was NOT acceptable and he made it clear.

P.S: I’m not advocating that you hit your child, this was just this fathers’ approach to holding the center. Use yours.

You can’t shout every time they do something wrong, you can’t make an issue EVERYTIME they lose a toy, refuse to tidy their room or shove their sibling. You will exhaust both yourself and your child and eventually, they will tune you out.

Here’s what you can do – Decide what is really really important to you as a parent – what kind of child you want to raise, what values you want at their core, and focus here.

This is your center.

You want your kid to be able to come to you when they need to; and this will be unlikely if you keep yelling at them at every slip-up. Focusing on the center will make it abundantly clear to your kids what is acceptable and what is not, it gives them a few big things to focus on instead of trying to be perfect at all the other little things like sharing their toys or cleaning their rooms.  I’m not saying these things aren’t important, but will it really really matter in 5 years that your child isn’t potty trained now?

I mean, really! Think about it.

Look out for #part2 in this 3-part series. Big brother is always watching but he’s not who you think he is…

About Olachi

Hey, my name is Olachi and I like to refer to myself as a ‘thinking enthusiast.’

I love a few things, number one of them being learning and number two would be spreading.

I believe in the power of right thinking to transform lives and as a result; I enjoy spreading knowledge, inspiring thinking and encouraging movement.

I however am not a very serious person so please don’t expect to find me in a suit… In a crowd with beating music though, find me somewhere in the middle – moving to the beat and filling my soul with joy.

Olachi Olatunji

Chief Curator,

THEKNOWLEDGEOFHOW Blog.

#TKOH

 

 

Many children are becoming gadget addicts. They are getting so addicted to their phones, laptops, Ipads and play stations that parents should be worried. Children who are addicted to their gadgets lose concentration at school and their grades pay dearly for it. Some gadgets have restricted children’s imagination.

As a parent, you need to help your child or children find the right balance when embracing the real and virtual worlds. Most children’s play-grounds are virtual than real because they are always on their phones. They communicate more with their gadgets and this needs serious parental control.

It is true that technology is informative and entertaining, but it has disadvantages too. Parents need to know how to prevent technology addiction. Too much use of electronic gadgets has negative health effects on children. Too much addiction to gadgets causes rise of musculoskeletal problems in children.

Child gadget addiction needs to be treated firmly. Here are 5 tips for parents who want to digitally detox their children:

ways to prevent your children from being gadget addicts

Involve yourself

This is a very important aspect parents shouldn’t ignore. Even if you are overloaded with work and don’t find quality time to spend with your children, get involved by diverting their attention to other activities.

Parents can avoid having gadget addicts at home by spending quality time with their children. They can play games with them. Ask them questions about school, homework and friends. Don’t allow gadgets replace you in the lives of your children. Take action now.

No use of gadgets at meal time

If you want practical solutions to technology overuse, ban the use of gadgets during meal times in your house. Let your children know that meal time is what it is and shouldn’t be used to browse or play games.

Engage children in sports

Some children addicted to technology do that because they are bored. They can learn swimming, play football and cycle whenever they are bored. They can also go out and play with the other children in your neighborhood. This is how to distract kids from gadgets and divert their attention to real playgrounds.

Set activity time table

You can set time for studies, time to use gadgets, and time for outdoor activities. This is how to de addict kids from phones, laptops and play stations. They may find it hard to adjust but you need to be firm and strict about this. Create more fun-filled activities at home for them to partake in instead of staying glued to their phones and gadgets.

Maintain healthy sleeping routine

One of the ways of managing children’s consumption of electronic devices and preventing addiction to games is maintaining a healthy sleeping routine. Make it a rule for your children not to carry any electronic devices to bed.

Source: Feminine

 

Kerry Washington is the latest cover star for Marie Claire‘s Power Issue. For the cover feature, she talks life after tv series Scandal, heading back to Broadway, motherhood, and the Time Up movement.

Read excerpts below:

On the word Power: Honestly, I think about power as more of an internal phenomenon, I tend to think about empowerment for myself so that I have the courage and ability to act on the ideologies and priorities that resonate with me. I’ve always wanted to cultivate a sense of empowerment within myself without seeking approval from outside sources, which is hard to do as an actor, which is part of why producing is so important and which is where some of my freedom, or learning, to take that sense of freedom and bring it to a larger audience and larger space has a lot to do with having my employer be a black woman.

On working on Broadway:  Theater is a big part of why I fell in love with storytelling and with acting and I hadn’t been able to do it for the whole life of Scandal. I love being in the room with your audience. There’s something very meditative and monastic to me about theatre because on TV, every single day is different. To commit yourself to go to the same place and saying the same words and walking the same path, it’s almost like a labyrinth in a monastery or a walking meditation, where the world around you changes but you don’t. You commit to the same task at hand, and in doing that, you learn so much. The last time I did theater, it completely transformed my life. That’s where I met my husband.

On what Motherhood has taught her: Everything. My children are my teachers. There’s a writer that I love, Dr Shefali Tsabary. She writes about conscious parenting, and her paradigm is that we think about it all wrong. We think children come into the world and it’s our job to mold them and create them and teach them who to be so that they can be the best version of themselves, but it’s actually completely upside down. We get sent by God the kids we need so we can grow in order to be the parents they need us to be. The children I got sent came in perfect, and I have to figure out how to grow and evolve so that I can support the truth of them. I’m in a constant state of learning and challenging myself to make room for their perfection and beauty.

On the disparities in representation and action for women of colour in the industry and beyond: It’s complicated to be a woman of colour doing this work because I remember the first time I talked about it in a meeting. I said to the white women in the room, ‘You all roll your eyes when they call it a witch hunt, but for black women in this country, we’ve had our men hung from trees for whistling at white women when they did no wrong. The false accusation of sexual assault is a very real danger for us in a way that doesn’t resonate for you, and so when you wonder why there aren’t more of us in the room, that might be part of it.

It was in that meeting that we were talking about how one of our members got word that there was a powerful exposé being developed around R. Kelly and said, ‘Do we want to get ahead of this?’ It was like, ‘Of course we do.’ It can’t be only the Angelina Jolies and the Gwyneth Paltrows, that we prioritize their pain and ignore all of these underage black women who for decades have been saying, ‘Help me.’ We came forward for them in a statement about R. Kelly, and it was Time’s Up WOC’s first big public action.

Click here for more on Kerry.

Credit: BN

A woman I know thinks she knows what works better for her; she tells her story: “With my children, nobody can tell me what to do or tell me how to bring them up. I understand them and I think they know me, too. They know that concerning some of their behaviours, that I would never give in to their wishes. Still, my objection does not prevent them from trying to do just those things.

“I have three of them; two girls and one boy, ages six, nine and 12. Bringing them up is not easy, not when you are worrying or feeling tired then one or three of them decide to annoy you.

“Mummy, she pinched me so I have to beat her. We have a fixed time within which they could watch television, but it does not stop them from switching on between the time they have to do home work or help with housework.

“Sharp scolding works sometimes but many times when they have decided to have it out with you, you might just be speaking to the wall. When threats and shouts don’t work, that is when you take the final resort to drive home your point. I match to the sitting room and switch off the television myself.

“But that is a problem sometimes, normally, when I have taken this step, they feel ashamed and try to make up by playing with me or plead that I should “aw, mummy! Give us 30 minutes, now.”

“When I throw my ‘tantrum’, I wanted children who felt ashamed and guilty enough to try to make up to me. Sometimes, however, the reactions I get worsen my already frayed nerves. The result is sulky children; my daughter, the oldest would lie flat on her stomach, closes her eyes and refuse to listen to me; she switches off entirely. My son walks disconsolately to a corner and sulks while my youngest sheds silent tears.

“Do I give in to their wishes when I need their help? Should I allow them to disobey rules without permission because they have to see a favourite programme?

“I have used beating as discipline without success. I have concluded that children would always want to do what they want. I tell them that, but I also tell them that if all of us were to do what we wanted at the wrong time that chaos would be the result.

“What I do? I know it is time to look at the cause of the rebellion. In normal and happy times, one of them would be in the kitchen helping me while the others are hitting each other playing in a friendly way if home has been done. If I told them to put off the TV, they never needed to be told twice.

“When they resist, I know there is a problem somewhere; it may or may not have to do with school. One of them may have lost money or something valuable and feels bad and they want to discuss it with me but don’t know how to start.”

“How do you deal with it exactly?” we asked her. “I keep quiet and stare at them, I have not used words but my body language tells them that I am really angry with them. By the time I am ready to talk with them, they are calmer, too, and very willing to talk.

This mummy told us her story after we witnessed a scene between another mother and her 13-year-old daughter. We were sitting with the mother when the girl bounded in from outside-nose in the air and partially blinded with fury. “Mwn…mwn…mummy…mummy”, she wailed then stamped into a corner and yanked at an electric cable. All the appliances in the room went blank.

Before her action, she had been asking to use the mother’s phone which she refused her. The girl was remorseful and tried to put things in order again without success. She knew she had annoyed her mother but she did not leave the room; she went to her mother and stood wordlessly by her side. It was plain that she was imploring and asking for forgiveness.

The mother on her part had reacted to the disaster by drawing in her breath; she carried her head in her chest to show her distress. Mother and daughter stayed wordless for a few moments more, and then the mother went and put her connections back again and spoke kindly to her before she left.

Our summary is that you can get there by following your children calmly. Try to understand what is behind their actions; you may find it difficult if you think that children should obey you all the time. You should not always expect them to know that you feel stressed and expect them not be children.

Irrespective of your being worn out by them, children will make demands on you and they will fight or play roughly sometimes to your annoyance. But that is the truth.

Source: Guardian

Amaka Benson is an energy economist, mummy-blogger and author of recently launched children’s cookbook Micah’s Meals. She tells NIKE SOTADE how she ventured into full-time blogging, which has recorded a phenomenal success within the SHORT time she started, essence of her new book and more

Background

My name is Amaka Benson. I am an energy economist, mummy-blogger and more recently author of Micah’s Meals. I have a wonderful, loving and supportive husband, Yomi. We have been blessed with two beautiful children, Micah and Eliana. Our son Micah, is three years old, a strong-willed but sensitive little foodie. Our daughter Eliana, is eight months old and she is a very happy and gentle baby. I hold a first degree in Chemical Engineering from the University College London and a M.Sc. in Energy Studies with a specialisation in Energy Economics at the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy. In 2014, I started the lifestyle and parenting blog, Maky’s Corner and I recently published my first baby/toddler cookbook, Micah’s Meals.

Leaving the Oil and Gas Sector to go into blogging 

The decision to become a full time blogger didn’t happen overnight, I moved to a new country and we were expecting a baby soon after. It was a high risk pregnancy so I wasn’t able to return to work immediately. At the same time, I was working on publishing my first book, Micah’s Meals. The truth is I never compare my career as an energy economist to blogging and writing. I am thankful because I never approached blogging as a “career” or a means to make money. I simply wanted to share my story, but in a short period of time, my brand grew immensely. My children don’t see me going to an office everyday, but my son knows there are different kinds of jobs – I have an office at home, which I work from and I try to be a strong role model for my children as well as show them that unconventional work can also be meaningful.

I make it a point to stay up-to-date in my field, in case I decide I want to return to full time employment. It also helps that my husband is in the same industry – it makes for insightful work/dinnertime conversations. And, as time permits, I still seek out opportunities to consult on projects in my area of expertise.

Why Blogging

If someone told me five years ago that I would be running a blog very much centered on faith, pregnancy, motherhood and family, I would have laughed it off but becoming a mother, especially after experiencing difficulties, drastically changed my perspective on so many things. The truth is, I started blogging because I wanted to share my pregnancy testimony and I decided that a personal blog would be the best platform to do so.

My Target Audience

I don’t focus on a “target audience” – my blog, my story, my experiences are for everyone, regardless of age or sex. Having said that, I’m especially strong with women aged 18 – 34.

I started my blog with no expectations of a large readership, if any but the support has been overwhelmingly positive! In the first couple of months we already had over 300,000 views on the site. I feel so blessed that so many women open up to me and share their stories and testimonies. I connect with amazing women from all walks of life and have discovered a new passion in life.

Large Social media audience

I am blessed because I have been able to build my audience organically by doing the things I already do without focused intentions. By doing the things I love that come NATURALLY to me, it is humbling to know that I have been able to enrich and add value to my audience.

Micah’s Meal

Micah’s Meals is a weaning guide and recipe book for babies, toddlers and beyond. It is more than a cookbook; it is the quintessential guide to a baby’s IMPORTANT first years of feeding. From the introduction of solid foods at 6 months, Micah’s Meals provides information on taste, texture and what foods to avoid in order to help make the transition to family meals easier for babies and toddlers.

I personally think every mum is busy but Micah’s Meals is not just for mothers. It is for parents and caregivers too. To make things simpler for parents, Micah’s Meals also includes weekly menu plans and tips for cooking in bulk, so you don’t have to spend hours everyday cooking. With the menu plans as a guide, people can make dishes in batches and store a variety of nutritious, tasty meals. Micah’s Meals is an invaluable guide that is suitable for both the novice and experienced cook, it is the perfect addition to every home.

Challenges of Parenting for the 21st Century Mother & How I balance it all 

The Bible says, “For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” So for me, juggling parenting with my career is learning about how best to manage my time and the opportunities God provides and blesses me with.

 

I need to balance quite a few roles but the roles I consider most IMPORTANT in my life are my roles as a wife and mother, especially the role of raising our kids to be wholesome and well rounded in their vital formative years. I try to be superwoman some days but I am honestly still learning to “balance” my ambition with my roles and responsibilities as a wife and mother. Ultimately I am a work in progress, subject to continual reflection and reassessment.

Meet Maky Benson

I believe in loving myself for who I am, keeping an open mind to the rest of the world. Not letting the noise of other people’s opinions drown out my inner voice. I believe in not worrying about things I can’t change, enjoying the little things in life, never giving up hope, trying to be the best I can be at everything and living without regrets. More IMPORTANTLY, having the courage to follow my heart and intuition.

My Faith

My faith has been a constant in my life for as long as I can remember – through school and into adulthood, though there have been times along the way where I have drifted and needed to re-align myself with God and rededicate myself to him.

Life has taught me that sometimes, you have to grow into your passion, it’s not something you are necessarily born with – sometimes you have to cultivate, curate, and discover what it is that makes you tick. It’s one of the reasons I find doing things so incredibly IMPORTANT; discovery, skill and mastery are as essential to happiness as many other things.

What have been the challenges of breaking into the blogging world?

The biggest challenge I faced was finding and starting a niche – when I started blogging as a new mum in 2014, there weren’t a lot of mummy bloggers. I created a platform to make women comfortable to discuss their setbacks, triumphs and the everyday joys that redefine their notions of motherhood. As a result, I got a lot of comments like “what is she going to tell us about motherhood that we don’t know” or some people weren’t comfortable with me being so open about my experiences and challenges. Through it all, these challenges have helped me grow into the person I am today and I thank God I’m able to keep doing what I love regardless of the trials I may face.

How I relax

I love to do a couple of things. Listening to gospel music and reflecting on life is very relaxing to for me. I also love reading motivational and inspirational books – for my Christian life, family, marriage and parenting. Other times I love going to the spa, getting facials, getting my hair done and so on. Things that make me feel and look good.

What I want to be remembered for

How I want to be remembered? I want to be remembered as the woman who gave her all. Giving less than 100 per cent effort is not an option for me. I give my all in everything I do – you only get one chance at life, and I’m going to make the most of it. I want to be remembered as the woman who inspired others to reach their goals – I hope that’s the mark I leave on the world. I want to be remembered as the woman who never lost her faith. I’m a very positive by NATURE, and I think a big part of that is knowing that there’re things beyond my control and God has always got a plan for me. If I didn’t have that to hold on to, I don’t know where I would have been. I want to be remembered as the woman whose heart was full of love. I want to be remembered as the woman who lived with no regrets. Obviously, living without regrets doesn’t mean I never messed up or made mistakes, it just means that in those times I learned something. I also don’t want to get to the end of my life and wish I had done more with it – I want to live an extraordinary life. I want to be remembered as a wonderful mother and wife.

Finally, I would like to be remembered as someone who made a difference in the world, who accomplished her dreams, pleased God, and did what God created me to do on this earth.