Sunday, January 31, 2016

Love is in the air...

It's February and love is in the air...
Our families are our worlds. We love them and show them in so many ways every day.  Can we show TOO MUCH love?  How often do you think about how you show your love? Do you show love with hugs and kisses? Do you show love through your cooking or creating? Do you love to buy things for your family to show them you're thinking of them? Do you write love notes? Perhaps you plan special dates with your kids. We all have different ways of giving love and it's all good, but is too much of a good thing no longer good?  Be sure that how you show love teaches your kids your values.  We often get caught in traps of buying things when really we want to communicate that time together is more important than stuff. Sometimes we want to make things all better for our kids, when really showing love would mean letting them struggle a bit and learn deeper lessons. Loving our kids too much can actually cripple them later in life.
My best advice is to ask yourself what would be best for your kids in the big picture. Do they need to learn this lesson to be stronger and wiser later in life? Would backing out of a situation be better for your child than micro-managing it? Remember the old saying, "Tell me and I forget, teach me and I remember, involve me and I learn." (Benjamin Franklin) 

Let your kids experience their lives; don't bubble wrap them, guide them from a distance and hug them close when they hurt.

Sending you all much love!

Wishing you balance,
Bette Alkazian, LMFT
Balanced Parenting

(from my February, 2016 newsletter)


Wednesday, January 27, 2016


Let's talk about FEAR! It effects all of us in some way or another.  What role does fear play in your every day? Are you held hostage by it? Are your decisions based upon it? Are your behaviors driven by it? A little fear is known to be a good thing.  It actually makes us motivated and even perform better on tests.  But, as with anything, too much of a good thing is no longer a good thing.  Are you afraid of bad things happening to your kids? Of course, we all are! But when it keeps you from letting them do new things or limits their exploration and keeps their world TOO small, it's become a problem. Are you afraid of your kids' big feelings? Are you afraid of them being unhappy? Are you afraid of their wrath if you say, "NO"? Rather than letting fear be the driver, take back your power, take some deep breaths and ask a trusted friend if your fear is creating more problems and limitations than it should be.  Take good care of you and get help if necessary to put YOU back in the driver's seat of your life!

Wishing you balance,

Bette Alkazian, LMFT
Balanced Parenting

reposted from MOMIPEDIA on Facebook

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Self-Esteem and our Kids

Tonight I'll be speaking at Temple Etz Chaim about Kids and Self-Esteem, so I have self-esteem on my brain. It's been a pop psychology buzz word for so many years, but what is self-esteem, really? It's our sense of who we are, our worth and abilities. Unfortunately, we have so much input telling us if we are good or bad, we aren't sure who or what to listen to. Our goal is to teach our kids (and ourselves) to listen to their guts and their hearts about what is right for them. Our worth isn't about pop culture's definitions of good or cool, it's about our sense of what's right and especially what's right for us! When we like who we are, we have the inner strength to stand up for what we believe in and even to stand up for others who may be wronged. Don't over-praise your kids, they will stop believing you. Compliment their actions, give them the space to struggle and then conquer, have faith in them even when they are having a hard time; let them fail, learn from it and then pull themselves back up. This parenting thing is hard, but if we can resist our temptations to jump in, we create the space for them to like themselves a whole lot!

Wishing you balance,


from 1-20-16 post on MOMIPEDIA on Facebook

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Do it, then feel it!

So, who made some resolutions for 2016? I know I did! It's not just about the resolutions, it's about the changes in our behaviors.  As they say, the road to nowhere is paved with good intentions. As a therapist, quite often I see people saying  "When I feel it, I'll do it.".  "When I have some willpower I'll lose those 15 pounds." "When I'm inspired I'll write that book I've been meaning to write." The truth of the matter is, the action has to come FIRST and the feelings will follow. Just start that project... just eat one healthy meal with no commitment to going further... just write that first page... Don't wait to be caught up in the moment, make the moment happen!

From MOMIPEDIA on Facebook 1-13-16

Friday, January 8, 2016

New Years Resolution for 2016

Happy New Year!  It's been a long time since I've posted here.  I've been focusing more on my Facebook page "Balanced Parenting" as well as posting for Momipedia and doing lots of other writing.  It's a new year and like many of you, I've made some resolutions! One of mine is "full engagement".  It's my new mantra to remember to dive in deeply to whatever it is I'm doing.  Full engagement in my work, full engagement toward my personal and professional goals and full engagement in my life, in general!  Who's with me?  I want to live smarter, engage more deeply in my relationships, honor my body and my "self" in a greater way... and so much more. 

So, one way I'm honoring my work and hoping to help more people is to write here and share a thought or two in the hopes that it touches you, too.  Feel free to comment, subscribe, or share if my words move you.

Happy New Year and let's ENGAGE FULLY together!!!

Wishing you balance,

Bette Alkazian, LMFT
Balanced Parenting

P.S. I'm also revamping my website, so stay tuned for the big reveal!