Monday, November 18, 2013

Life Is Good and the Terrific Twos!

One of the women I most admire!
by Glenni Lorick, IBCLC

This morning I had the privilege of listening to a woman whom I have come to deeply admire, Angela Loehr Chrysler. She mentioned that one of her favorite product lines is Life Is Good because she is drawn to the optimistic attitudes of the founders, Bert and John Jacobs. They started from scratch and have built a brand out of optimism!

Now if you know me very well, you know that I am a "Glass is half-full" kind of gal. Even when things are cloudy, I'm out there looking for the silver lining that I KNOW has to be there! So even though I've seen the adorable Life Is Good line of products, I really paid attention when Angela mentioned them this morning.

She went on to talk about the importance of optimism in every area of our lives. She mentioned as an example her parenting experience. Instead of thinking of her daughter (who is now 9) as having gone through the "terrible twos," she thought of them as the "terrific twos"! Now that's my kind of parenting philosophy!

I don't know how much of the Attachment philosophy Angela embraces, and honestly, it doesn't really matter where you fall on the attachment spectrum when it comes to embracing each parenting moment. So how do the "terrific twos" differ from the "terrible twos"?  Let's look at some specific examples:

  • Your two year old is whiny and demanding that you hold her.  A terrible two mom might think she's being spoiled and get frustrated or perhaps discipline her. A terrific two mom, on the other hand, will take a moment to ask herself a couple of questions: "Is my child tired? hungry? not feeling well? Have I been too busy to focus on her?" Usually there is a legitimate reason behind the whiny behavior. When you take a moment to really listen to your child's heart, you will figure it out. Rather than creating a spoiled, demanding child, you will create a child who knows she can communicate with you. In fact, you can begin to gently teach her non-whiny methods of communicating. 

  • Your two year old bites, kicks or hits another child in play. A terrible two mom may be quick to spank or perhaps even "bite" her child back. However, a terrific two mom will be quick to remove her child from the situation and assess what is going on with him. Obviously he is frustrated about something. He must learn that biting, kicking and hitting are not acceptable behaviors. When he has behaviors like that, he will not be allowed to play anymore. She will focus on figuring out what lies behind his behavior and changing that situation.

  • Your two year old throws a temper tantrum in the middle of the grocery store because she wants
    you to buy her something.
    A terrible two mom may do one of two things: give in and buy it to get the kid to shut up, or discipline her harshly to make her stop. A terrific two mom might just stop right there and hold her tightly until she settles down. The solution may even involve leaving the store because Mom recognizes that her child is hungry, tired or not feeling well.

  • Your two year old refuses to eat and actually throws the food you made on the ground. A terrible two mom might get angry and yell. Or she might just give in and give her something that she will eat. A terrific two mom, however, will understand that toddlers sometimes don't want to eat. Nevertheless, instead of going on to dessert, she will patiently and lovingly explain that little girls who don't eat their meals don't get dessert. That same food she threw down earlier will still be available when she's hungry.
So how do you view your toddler? How do you view life? Is Life Good? Is your glass half full? If so, you've probably got a TERRIFIC TWO year old!!

Now, I'm off to do some Christmas shopping at the Life Is Good online store!!

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