Posts tagged Calm
Secure Your Own Oxygen Mask Before Helping Others (Prize Inside)

We nannies don't have to teach kids how to read, write or multiply fractions. Instead, we teach them to: 

Make friends 
Use their manners
Take the right risks
Become independent
Fix problems with words
Bounce back from failures
Stay calm when they're mad
Be creative, courageous and kind 
Persevere in the face of a challenge
Follow directions but think for themselves, and 
Everything else they need to know to become awesome adults

No problem, we got this. On one condition.

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Love Bank

Dr. John Gottman, marriage and parenting expert talks about a concept called an emotional bank account. I'm just going to say, love bank. 

It's the idea that at the center of any relationship there's a piggy bank. We make deposits into it through positive interactions that build connection and withdrawals during negative interactions that strain the two people's connection. Dr. Gottman uses this metaphor with married couples. But I often think of it during daily interactions with kids. 

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Let Kids Save Face

Some kids hear their names a lot. I recall a little guy in a childcare center who heard his name all day. "Sam, come down from there! Sam, walk please. Sam, stop it!" Sam had a hard time following the rules. His behavior and his attitude chipped away at the patience of us childcare providers. He needed lots of reminders. We started resenting that - resenting him. 

I think now about how he must have felt hearing his name shouted across the room.

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Be Sincere

Rosie, a young nanny friend and I were sitting in an adorable Mexican restaurant when she asked me how to approach the fights her nanny kids had been having. I modeled some empathetic phrases she could use when the older sister feels hurt as well as a few questions she could ask to hold each child accountable for her actions. After talking through several scenarios, Rosie said: "I get it, I need to be sincere!"

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The Real Reason to Sing Lullabies

It's cool to know that our ancient instinct to sing to crying babies has the ability slow their heart rate and help them feel calm. I like the, "shh shh shhhh..." method too.

I spent A LOT of time bouncing, rocking and shhhing my baby girl when she was tiny. It did help her. But it also slowed my heart rate, chilled out my tense shoulders and quieted my racing frustrations. I think it was all the exhaling.

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