I believe that set-in-stone boundaries should be limited and not necessarily based on my values, because who am I to tell my children what to value. However, there are certain values I hold dear that I would selfishly like my children to also feel are important during their time here. I believe these are Essential Values, and will help them stay aligned with their Essential Selves.
When I carefully consider the most important values that I would like them to also cherish if I were to die tomorrow, they are as follows:
1. To be kind (first to themselves)
2. To be loving (first to themselves)
3. To be generous (first to themselves)
4. To be thankful
However, these aren’t things we TALK about. These are things we DO. I know the most important way to teach a child is to model what I want them to learn, so I’ve had to carefully consider what I am showing my children and see where what I’m doing doesn’t line up with what I believe they need to know.
Of course, this kind of sucks, because I’ve had to grow up. I’ve had to fix my s#!t. I have to do the laundry. I have to tidy up after myself. I have to take showers when I just feel like collapsing into bed. I have to eat mindfully and keep irresistible treats out of the house (or eyesight) as much as possible. I have to pick up the car and spend five minutes every night picking up the kitchen. I do the laundry and dishes every day so it’s manageable.
But when I really thought about kindness and being loving, I realized there were still times, in fact, many times, when I was dropping into what’s called “ego frequency” with my husband. I was still stuck in the idea that my life was just created by the people and events in it. I was blaming others for the way I felt, even when I didn’t react due to conscious awareness.
“UGH! He never washes the bottles! I hate having to stay up every night to do this! He’s so inconsiderate!” That would be the story running through my head and my ENERGY would match it even if I wasn’t yelling at him about it.
Our energy is absolutely felt by our children. And they definitely see the way we react when another is projecting their fears onto us via yelling or angry outbursts. If my energy drops down to meet it and I start yelling back, I’m not modeling kindness or love. I can show my children that I love myself by removing myself.
“I see you want to have a conversation with yourself, since you’re mad at yourself and I don’t have any control over your emotions. This behavior is unacceptable. I’m going for a walk with the kids.”
I am creating my reality. Always. When my energy changes, his likely will change as well due to our strong connection. When I stay in the high frequency state of love, I can make clear decisions about when I need to set a boundary, and the bonus is he will also entrain to (match) my energy. Try it, you may even see the other person forget what they were saying!
When I model being responsible and tidy, everyone in the house slowly begins to contribute. It becomes The Way. Without nagging, without fights, without lists. It just becomes the energetic blueprint of our home.
Once I finally had this realization, I was able to model kindness all of the time (well, most of the time, I am not enlightened), not just with the random acts of kindness that I do with the kids for others and stick up on a board (which is great, too, we love that!), but every single day even when the other person is brutal.
Every week my three year old gets a note from her preschool in her folder. I’m not interested in academic feedback, all I want to know is if she enjoys learning, but this past week her note included, “She has been a very caring friend. She is so happy.”
My heart melted.
She has been watching.