“We are so much more than what we do … ” Dr. Kathy Koch. Check out today’s video where Kathy talks about the need to emphasize who our children are because that will in turn affect their behavior and what they do.

I Am Not A Number

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The value of knowing who we are was never more dramatically portrayed to me than two weeks ago. I was both humbled and privileged to tour Fort Breendonk, a WWII concentration camp outside of Brussels, Belgium.

This wasn’t one of the horrific death camps where Jews were sent to die. Rather, it was a “work camp” with men imprisoned there for different reasons. Hundreds did die there. Some were shot. Some were hung. Many died because of exhaustion, bad treatment, and torture.

Who they were mattered and influenced who they became. The same thing is true for us and our children. Do they know who they are? If they don’t, they may not become who they could be. Today does influence tomorrow.

Hope: A Confident Expectation

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Hope. A confident expectation. Able to trust and believe even when we cannot see. Wanted. Desired. Needed.

No hope. Doubt. Questions. Concerns. Fears. Anger. Tears. Depression. Confusion. Embarrassment. Shame. Blame. Rejected. Unwanted.

Zophar talked with Job about the extremely valuable hope we can have in God:

You will surely forget your trouble,recalling it only as waters gone by.

Life will be brighter than noonday, and darkness will become like morning.

You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. - Job 11:16-18

What great promises! Hoping in God makes us more secure. We’ll be able to rest, forget our trouble, and life will be brighter.

When you meet people doubting, concerned, and fearful, are you ready to talk with them about this kind of hope? Will you be hopeful with them? For them?

Engaging All Eight “Smarts” Can Empower A Well Lived Life

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Choosing to use several smarts at the same time is wise. As I tell people when I teach, although I separate them to explain them, they actually never work alone. Knowing about the eight allows us to draw upon them as we need them. This doesn’t just increase our success. It can increase our joy. The more we experience the eight, the easier it becomes to predict which ones will help us in different circumstances. Then we can activate each way of thinking to benefit us.

It’s important for children to understand this for studying and life. Here’s an example from my recent trip overseas. I hope you’ll use it to help you explain the concept to them.

Changing Expectations Can Be Healthy

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When circumstances change, expectations sometimes should, too. Children would benefit from realizing this and learning how to do it. Otherwise, they can be discouraged for no good reason.

nmpkJill Savage and I, in our new book No More Perfect Kids: Love Your Kids For Who They Are, write about how setting expectations too high can contribute to children thinking they need to be perfect. We also fully understand that setting expectations too low isn’t healthy either. It can be tricky!

“The sooner we become aware of our expectations and align them with reality, the better it is for us and for our children. … We must look for and use evidence when setting goals and expectations for our children.” p. 14, 28

I spoke in Budapest, Hungary, recently, at a Hearts at Home conference. I knew the crowd response would be different from how people respond to me in America. I knew being translated would change the rhythm. Half the audience would react to what I said and half would respond after hearing the translation. I also knew Eastern Europeans would be more guarded in their responses so there would be fewer facial reactions and less laughter in general.

Today Dr. Kathy exhorts parents to, “Raise the children you were given, not the children you wish you had.” Check out today’s video which emphasizes the importance of parents empowering the discovery of who their child truly is as a gift from God.

If you find these videos helpful please “Like” and “Share” them on your social networks. Thank you!

What Are You Saying? The Importance Of Translation And Clarity

BudapestMeTeachingWithErika

When speaking to moms at the Hearts at Home conference in Budapest, Hungary, last Saturday, Erika translated my English into Hungarian. If she wouldn’t have, the Hungarian moms would have been lost. Confused. Untaught. Angry.

I hope I would have seen their confused looks as signs they needed help. I hope their scowls would have caused me to ask someone, “What’s wrong?” Perhaps I would have asked someone if translation was necessary.

Little Things May Be Big

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AirplaneMySeatAtlantaToParisOn the first flight on my European adventure last Wednesday, the flight attendant asked if I’d like cookies or pretzels with my water. Because I didn’t care, I responded, “Surprise me.”

She was flabbergasted. It was such a fun moment. Her grin was huge when she looked back to her cart and hovered her hand over the two baskets of snacks for a moment. She then reached in, chose some pretzels, and handed them to me. She was able to break out of a rut and enjoy a unique interaction with someone all because I did a “little thing.”

How could you surprise someone this week in a “little” way that adds joy to his or her day?

My seat on the 8-hour flight from Atlanta to Paris might be the best airplane seat I’ve ever had. I was amazed because my flights were booked only two days before my trip because pilots on the airline I had reservations with went on strike. I wouldn’t have been at all surprised to be in a middle seat of a crowded section.

Give us two minutes and we’ll give you a one sentence description of each of the eight smarts your kids have. They each need to know they’re smart. It’s a power word. When your kids and students know they’re smart they can behave like they are. Watch and pass it on. Show it to your kids and talk about it. Be an influence!