Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Blame It On Rio 2016!


The Olympics are over and I have to say that I'm grieving the loss a bit. It was an emotional ride that I would take again and again. The triumph, the defeat, the pride, the patriotism, the comraderie, the talent, the commitment, the determination, the laser-sharp focus...I could go on and on. I know there were a few blemishes, but don't let the media attention to those moments overshadow the big picture of what an amazing ritual-filled coming together the Olympics are to the whole world.  This is the kind of thing kids should be allowed to watch for hours (with parental editorials, of course!) I hope you shed a few tears like I did (ok, more than a few!) and were inspired to push yourselves a little further than you might have before.  Feel free to share your favorite events, moments, or any Olympics related thoughts with us!

Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com

Thursday, August 18, 2016

It's Honeymoon Time!


Ok, here comes school for many and some have already begun.  My own daughter starts next Wednesday.  There is an excitement and a little nervous energy associated with the start of school which leads the way into what I call "the honeymoon".  The first month or so is everyone getting used to the new year, new teachers, new classes, new routines, new friends, etc...Lots to process and take in for those more sensitive students. After the first month the novelty wears off and kids begin to test the limits and show their struggles. Be aware and attempt to be proactive if you see your child struggling with academics, socially or behaviorally. Remember this post a month from now and I'll do my best to remember to remind you. Parents, enjoy the honeymoon! <3 nbsp="" span="">

Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com


from MOMIPEDIA post on Facebook

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Adaptability



It’s the beginning of a new school year and some kids roll with it better than others. Change is the only constant, right? Our ability to adjust to new situations depends very much on our level of adaptability.  The good news is that for those of us for whom change is challenging, we can increase our adaptability with some effort. 
We must be able to: respond to sudden changes in our circumstances; keep calm in the face of difficulties; shift priorities in the face of changing situations, and much more.  How do we help our kids for whom flexibility is not their greatest strength? 
We need to help our kids (and ourselves) to practice greater levels of patience; to see change as a positive (which requires optimism); to keep an open mind; and to bounce back as quickly as possible when the unexpected happens.  Simply an awareness of wanting to improve our skills in these areas is a great beginning. Breathe…relax…and let life roll on!


Wishing you balance,


Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com


from MOMIPEDIA post on Facebook 8-10-16

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

'Tis the Season for...ANXIETY!


The beginning of the new school year is a common time for kids and parents to experience anxiety.  The parents are anxious that kids will be happy and thrive in their new grade, new school, with new friends, etc...  Kids are anxious about all of the unknowns, their new teachers, new kids, new school, new classroom, everything is new even if they went to that school last year.  For kids who experience anxiety, as a rule, it's especially challenging.  Their anxiety that may have been a bit lower in the summer is back with a vengeance! 

Here are a few tips to help your kids and yourself deal with this very anxious time of year!
  • Manage your expectations of your kids and situations realistically
  • Make sure you are taking good care of yourself to ensure maximum patience with your kids
  • Take time away if you need it, meditate, exercise...self-care is of paramount importance, not a luxury
  • When your child is expressing anxious feelings, don't try to reason with him/her.  Combatting logic with feelings never works!
  • Stay in a place of compassion - "I know this is hard!" "Do you need a hug?" "New things can be scary!"
  • Don't change plans to accommodate anxiety unless absolutely necessary.  Kids have to learn that their anxiety doesn't change the circumstance, it just takes the fun out of it.
This is a stressful time of year for parents and kids alike.  The more preparation and proactive planning there is, the happier everyone will be!!

Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Bridge to Connectedness...


I love when a theme emerges with my clients and this month's theme has been about feeling "safe" in relationships. When we use respect with each other and truly cherish our partners' and our kids' strengths AND weaknesses, we make them feel SAFE with us. They feel able to be honest, able to be vulnerable without fear and able to open their hearts and share with us; this is what leads to true connectedness and intimacy in relationships.  This is what we all crave and yearn for from those we love. Look inward at how you might make your partner or kids feel "unsafe" with you and work to hold your tongue when criticism or harshness comes. Your compassion and unconditional love are your greatest bridges to true connectedness.

Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT, BCPC
www.BalancedParenting.com



from MOMIPEDIA on Facebook 7-27-16

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Respect at all times!



Respect at all times! How can we expect our kids to be respectful of us if we are not respectful of them? We don't deserve respect just because we are the parents, we have to earn it, too, and model how to do that for our kids. Use a respectful tone of voice; choose your words and timing wisely before making a request of your child; remember that just because something is important to you, doesn't mean it is important to your child or important to others. Remember that those with whom we live deserve as much loving respect and more as those we meet on the street.

Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

A Different Kind of Independence - Letting Go!



What do you fiercely hold on to that you should be letting go of? There's been a theme in my office this week of people struggling to let go...of something.  Sometimes it's an event in the past, or a grudge that we hold on to even if we forgot why, or a thing that holds sentimental value or none, or a story that we tell ourselves that we don't want to challenge or question. There is much that we hold onto that drains our energy or drains our relationships or drains us financially. Independence Day can mean many different types of independence.  How about a healthy letting go of something that no longer serves us?  What do you want to let go of today?


Wishing you balance,

Bette Levy Alkazian, LMFT
www.BalancedParenting.com

from MOMIPEDIA post on Facebook
7-6-16