Do As I Say… let’s be honest with ourselves about what kind of example we are setting. It’s really easy to expect a lot of our kids. Have you really looked at your own behavior and asked if it’s up to par with what you are wanting from your child?
“Do As I Say, Not As I Do”
We all know the old quote “Do as I say, not as I do.” It always evokes a good laugh and many times I’ve heard parents throw it around jokingly.
But the not so funny part is that all too often, this is how we as parents try to raise our children.
I’ve heard parents use profanity around and in talking to their children but be up in arms about their own child spouting off a four letter word. Or discipline their child for talking badly about a classmate but in the next breath, “discuss” the neighbor down the street or the mom of a playmate. What about telling your child that beauty is only skin deep and they are beautiful no matter their size or shape? But the next morning, standing in front of your mirror frowning as you protest not fitting into your skinny jeans.
You Can’t Have It Both Ways
We can’t have it both ways. Children are little sponges, soaking up EVERYTHING around them. This is why they have an amazing ability to learn vocabulary, language, reading, math, etc. They see it all, hear it all and want to DO it all…just like their Mom and Dad.
And we all know actions speak MUCH louder than words.
But it’s hard to follow this rule isn’t it? It’s hard to not lose your temper and let fly a word that isn’t ok in your house.
In our house, we try to not say “Dangit.” Now that sounds extreme I’m sure, but hear me out. I have never been one to use profanity, but I definitely say Dangit. Which, I think as an adult probably merits some kind of award.
And all was well and good until I started hearing my then-4 year old use that word. And it just left a bad taste in my mouth. It seemed disrespectful and way too snarky coming from that little sweet angel mouth.
So I had to buck up and tell my kids that “Dangit” was not okay in our house. And trust me, they never let me slide when I forget! Which is good, because at least they know where our family stands and it keeps me accountable.
And I’ve also had to wrestle with my own natural inclinations to chuckle about the lady at the store who most certainly could not have looked in a mirror before she left her house this morning. Because I have little ears listening and little eyes watching me. Am I being the person I want my girls to be? That’s a resounding No.
Ask Yourself This Question
And far beyond the realm of “Are we following the rules,” I try and ask myself this question:
Are my words, is my behavior and do my actions show my girls every day the person I want them to remember me as…
Because one day, I won’t be standing beside them in the line or walking with them into class. And I want them to have a well to draw from. A foundation from which they can judge their own actions.
Not a place of perfection because neither I nor them can ever attain that. But a place of trying…a place of trying to do the right thing. Of trying to say the nice thing.
Of trying to be a better person…even when this world will give them every way not to be.
If you have missed any in the series 31 Days & 31 Ways To Be A Better Mom, catch up here:
INTRO TO SERIES:
DAY 1: OUR BEFORE SCHOOL RULE
DAY 2: UNPLUG AND PLUG IN
DAY 3: STEP AWAY FROM YOUR CHILD
DAY 4: EMBRACE YOUR CRAZY
DAY 5: BE A REBEL
DAY 6: DO AS I SAY
DAY 7: FIND YOUR VILLAGE
DAY 8: DIVIDE & CONQUER
DAY 9: ONE SMART COOKIE
DAY 11: STOP COMPARING YOUR CHILD
DAY 12: TAKE CARE OF #1
DAY 13: DATE YOUR CHILD
DAY 17: PUT YOURSELF IN THEIR SHOES
DAY 18: QUIT BEATING YOURSELF UP
DAY 22: FAMILY DINNER SHMINNER
DAY 23: REBELLION IS A CRAZY THING
DAY 24: TELL THEM IT WILL GET BETTER
DAY 26: IT’S OKAY TO WISH TODAY WAS OVER
DAY 27: BE A GOOD DAUGHTER
DAY 28: QUIT TRYING TO BE THAT OTHER MOM
DAY 29: YOU CAN’T BUY THEIR HAPPINESS
DAY 30: TELL YOUR KIDS YOU ARE A FAILURE
DAY 31: LEARNING TO LET GO