It’s all in the attitude

July 15, 2015 , In: Figuring it Out, Motherhood, Toddler , With: 6 Comments

attitude adjustment

In the last month or so I’ve read a couple of things that have really stuck with me and made me really try to readjust my way of thinking – and yesterday something happened that showed that I am on the right track.

How I Faked My Way to a Happy Marriage stuck with me.  Despite the title, it’s really about faking your way to eventually readjusting your attitude. I am a naturally negative person but that attitude kind of sucks.  Whenever I want to say something negative I pause, think about it, and try to say something positive instead.  I’ve noticed that after years of doing this positive thoughts are much more often the first thing out of my mouth.  It’s tough – I have to mentally correct myself quite often but it’s slowly working.

I believe most of us naturally do this with our babies.  How many of us have had to grit our teeth as we smile for another wake up, a baby that won’t nap or a baby that’s screams for no reason.  Do you notice how if your face is angry, the baby keeps screaming but if you force a smile often you get one in return?  But how many of us lose that attitude as our kids get older?

It's All in the Attitude |

Playful Parenting is another book about readjusting attitudes.  Basically, it’s about engaging and playing with our kids.  It’s not a new book and many of the ideas are already widely practiced in society – things like actively playing with your kids at the park.  Many parents these days do play with their kids in the park.  I don’t think this was happening a few generations back.

The hard part about this method is turning frustrating situations into playful ones.  I’m talking about when your kid doesn’t want to get dressed/take a bath/go to bed/eat… the list goes on.  It’s those times when you just want to scream and yell that turning the situation into a game seems impossible.

For me, bed time is the WORST.  I’m tired and it takes Bastien up to an hour to finally fall asleep.  We have to continually lead him back to his room.  I can hear banging, dragging of sheets and jumping on the bed.  If we close his door he shakes it enough to wake up his brother.

Yesterday I was on my own with the two kids.  Alex was NOT having it and it was Bastien’s bedtime.  Instead of screaming at Bastien a million times to go back to bed while I sat with Alex, I invited him into the room with us.

It's All in the Attitude |

Bastien was wonderful and I think he appreciated being involved.  He sang songs to Alex, kissed him on the head and we actually all had a pretty fun time.  Alex laughed at his brother and eventually I put him down and he fell asleep silently.

Instead of losing my shit I took a different approach and involved everyone with singing and fun.  It was so much more enjoyable than the usual nights when I feel like I’m going to lose my mind.  This won’t work every night but it showed me that a slight adjustment can make all the difference.

I’m interested to hear how you guys deal when you are on your own for bedtime with multiple kids.  Any tricks?

ps You may also like survival mode with tiny human prison guards, getting through the first weeks with baby, the real deal with being a parent, and for something different… a peek at our son’s nursery!

  1. Reply

    Ahhh yes…the solo bedtime routine….I am familiar as a wife of a realtor with work commitments at all hours. I can say that it gets easier as the little one grows and it has helped me to do as you did last night, have them both included. We now have bath time together as well as story time together and Clementine loves to be involved. It has turned into a time that I look forward to!
    Another tip that I have used when I get overwhelmed is to pause, look at them and tell them that I love them. It almost always works….simple and sweet! Thanks for the book recommendation, I am going to look into it!

      • Michelle
      • July 15, 2015

      Thanks for the positive thoughts Amanda!

      It’s true, taking a hard look and a pause (and a deep breath) is always a good tactic!! Or just 20 seconds in a room with the door closed to breath and refocus 🙂

    • Cathy
    • July 15, 2015

    I have the same issue with William 🙂 we are now at the stage where we put them both in the same room. They often play and have fun together while they are suppose to sleep. But at least they have each other. What worked was to allowed them to have one small toy with them as a protection, a small light open and if I play lullaby on the guitar they love it. 🙂 Alex mostly fall asleep first and then William may be allowed to stay a little longer up. But then we create a time boundary. Like: you have 20 more minutes to play.
    Positive thinking: the Happiness Advantage. I am reading it right now. Worth it.

      • Michelle
      • July 15, 2015

      That’s sweet Cathy – it sounds like you’ve found something that works for you guys. I will definitely check out that book! Thanks for the tip!

    • Alexis
    • December 4, 2015

    I came across your blog about insecurities and glasses…. Totally related to it. How is your condition doing? Anyway, I have 2 girls ages 9 and 1. Bedtime is easy now but the age gap has a lot to do with it. The older helps soothe the younger…. But I do find your articles so relatable. I’m so far from where you are but yet funny how distance or what, we can find kindred spirits…. I often feel just like you in your articles. At least I know I’m not alone in my mind…. Ha ha

      • Michelle
      • December 5, 2015

      Hi Alexis – Thanks for commenting! Glad to hear someone else can relate to the glasses. I haven’t had a flare up for over a year but I can still feel it from time to time – I know it’s still there.

      So glad your bedtime is easy – it looks like you have a routine down. Whatever works, right!

      I’m so happy you’re able to relate – I think that no matter where we are in the world we can have shared experiences. Where are you located?

      Thanks for reading and I hope to hear more from you!

      xx Michelle

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Michelle Little

Writer & Photographer

Originally from the prairies and now in Montreal, I love exploring new places, eating great food and modern design. I'm mom of two wild things and paper and cake make me happy. Photographing your cutie family would make me very happy.

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