faydra-masthead

Parents Are Teachers

15 Jan
January 15, 2013
There was a time when all of the hierarchy of social life was based on survival of the fittest. I doubt in cave man times that hunters shared a piece of saber toothed tiger with the guy who sat in the cave while the others hunted. That guy either learned to hunt or he starved, didn’t get a mate, didn’t have warm furs to wear and he probably was bludgeoned by someone who didn’t want him taking up space without contributing. Likewise, I am not sure that I want a future with leaders who only played on teams where they didn’t keep score and everyone always got a high five, there were no grades given in their classes and if they didn’t “feel” like doing something, it was alright.
I have no answers for the complexities of whether we should strive for achievement or for a world where no one need excel because in the end, aren’t we all in this together, but the fact is, if I am in pain, I want the best doctor. If we are attacked, I want the best military and if we need leadership, I want the most qualified people at the helm. There are children out there who are self starting, motivated kids by nature, but there are also kids who need to be taught the values and virtues of getting it done.
Most people tend to parent as they were parented. There are those who resent their childhood so much that they put concerted effort into become the parents they never had. No matter what type of parenting you had, it is fundamental to teach children the skills they will need to achieve in their adulthood. If you wait to let them figure it out on their own, they will be stunted in their growth curve when they leave your house. If you think that they will learn it in school, you are wrong.
It is vital that you teach your children how to do stuff that they don’t want to do, because we all know that our adult lives are filled with things we don’t want to do. Teach kids that mediocrity is as cancerous as smoking weed or cigarettes. Be honest with your children that it doesn’t matter if their teacher is a jerk, dork or worse, they need to learn to deal with those types of people and come out on top, because in life, those people are everywhere and sometimes they are your boss and you can’t go to the counseling office and ask to be reassigned.
Teach your kids that if they want it, they have to want it more than mom and dad. They can expect and receive your support and all of the benefits of your wisdom, maybe you can even open a few doors for them, but ultimately, they have to walk through the doors and they have to do the work. If they don’t know what to do in life, teach them and then require them to use the new found knowledge. Teach kids what they can’t figure out on their own, and allow them to figure out the things they can. Self discovery is as important as mentorship, they go hand in hand.
Teaching kids is like a verse from the great Kenny Rogers song, you got know when to hold ’em know when to fold ’em. There is a balance between giving them tools, supports and things and requiring them to earn tools, supports and things.

Parents Are Teachers

15 Jan
January 15, 2013
There was a time when all of the hierarchy of social life was based on survival of the fittest. I doubt in cave man times that hunters shared a piece of saber toothed tiger with the guy who sat in the cave while the others hunted. That guy either learned to hunt or he starved, didn’t get a mate, didn’t have warm furs to wear and he probably was bludgeoned by someone who didn’t want him taking up space without contributing. Likewise, I am not sure that I want a future with leaders who only played on teams where they didn’t keep score and everyone always got a high five, there were no grades given in their classes and if they didn’t “feel” like doing something, it was alright.
I have no answers for the complexities of whether we should strive for achievement or for a world where no one need excel because in the end, aren’t we all in this together, but the fact is, if I am in pain, I want the best doctor. If we are attacked, I want the best military and if we need leadership, I want the most qualified people at the helm. There are children out there who are self starting, motivated kids by nature, but there are also kids who need to be taught the values and virtues of getting it done.
Most people tend to parent as they were parented. There are those who resent their childhood so much that they put concerted effort into become the parents they never had. No matter what type of parenting you had, it is fundamental to teach children the skills they will need to achieve in their adulthood. If you wait to let them figure it out on their own, they will be stunted in their growth curve when they leave your house. If you think that they will learn it in school, you are wrong.
It is vital that you teach your children how to do stuff that they don’t want to do, because we all know that our adult lives are filled with things we don’t want to do. Teach kids that mediocrity is as cancerous as smoking weed or cigarettes. Be honest with your children that it doesn’t matter if their teacher is a jerk, dork or worse, they need to learn to deal with those types of people and come out on top, because in life, those people are everywhere and sometimes they are your boss and you can’t go to the counseling office and ask to be reassigned.
Teach your kids that if they want it, they have to want it more than mom and dad. They can expect and receive your support and all of the benefits of your wisdom, maybe you can even open a few doors for them, but ultimately, they have to walk through the doors and they have to do the work. If they don’t know what to do in life, teach them and then require them to use the new found knowledge. Teach kids what they can’t figure out on their own, and allow them to figure out the things they can. Self discovery is as important as mentorship, they go hand in hand.
Teaching kids is like a verse from the great Kenny Rogers song, you got know when to hold ’em know when to fold ’em. There is a balance between giving them tools, supports and things and requiring them to earn tools, supports and things.

Manners Matter

08 Jan
January 8, 2013

As printed in the 1/08/2013 edition of the Red Bluff Daily News

Every once in a while, I get a request from someone in the community to write about something that matters to them. For one community member, manners matter. In particular, thank you cards and RSVP’s. According to her experience, both are rarely used anymore and are sorely missed.
How many of you sent out thank you notes after receiving holiday gifts? When you were invited to all of the holiday gatherings, did you let the host know if you would be there or did you simply leave them hanging, not knowing how much food they should prepare or how many places to set for dinner? What’s worse, did you say you would be there, get too busy, and not show up? Or worse still, did you let them know at the very last second what your plans were? If you did go, did you think to bring a hostess gift? Do you even know what a hostess gift is?
Manners matter. Being gracious shows character and should be taught in childhood. Children tend to adopt the morals and values they learn as children in their adult life. My girls wrote thank you cards for every occasion as they grew up, when they graduated, I told them I expected them to continue the practice as adults. If they don’t, its on them, not me. It doesn’t take much time at all to write a small, heartfelt thank you note to someone who went out of their way to give you a gift.
Keep various boxes of thank you and blank note cards at home for you and your children to use. If you are of the crafty variety, you can even make note cards on your own or with your children. Every effort you make to teach the importance of gratitude will multiply in your family. When your child receives an invitation to a party, show them the RSVP and tell them how important it is to contact the host. Have them listen to you call with your acceptance or decline. Tell your child why it is important to contact a host. In these economic times it is important to help a host know if they should be baking a cake at home, or ordering one from Costco to feed all of the guests.
Imagine yourself sitting at home with your Pampered Chef representative waiting for the women (and maybe men) to attend your party. Imagine the pain and embarrassment you would feel if no one came. The sense of being forgotten, unimportant or humiliated would be prevail. It would not occur to you that every single one of your invited guests had either a prior commitment, the stomach flu or not enough spare money to attend. In that moment of abandonment horror, sitting alone with a Pampered Chef rep who will be making no money that night, you would simply feel sick to your stomach. You would dread work the next morning facing the very women (and men) who blew you off. The fact is, none of them knew that they weren’t the only ones who didn’t show up. To them it was a small thing to be unable to make it to your party, but to you it was a social devastation. How much easier would it have been to contact you and say that they could not be there. A simple heads up. After you saw that no one could make it, you would have the ability to contact your Pampered Chef rep and cancel or reschedule and all would be right in your world.
It’s the new year. Time to start fresh and new in all things. Make manners a priority this and every year. Bring teaching moments into your home and model the importance of thank you notes, RSVP’s, hostess gifts and the like for your family.
If you have a topic of interest that you would like represented in a column this year, send your request to lifecoach@shasta.comfor consideration.

Manners Matter

08 Jan
January 8, 2013

As printed in the 1/08/2013 edition of the Red Bluff Daily News

Every once in a while, I get a request from someone in the community to write about something that matters to them. For one community member, manners matter. In particular, thank you cards and RSVP’s. According to her experience, both are rarely used anymore and are sorely missed.
How many of you sent out thank you notes after receiving holiday gifts? When you were invited to all of the holiday gatherings, did you let the host know if you would be there or did you simply leave them hanging, not knowing how much food they should prepare or how many places to set for dinner? What’s worse, did you say you would be there, get too busy, and not show up? Or worse still, did you let them know at the very last second what your plans were? If you did go, did you think to bring a hostess gift? Do you even know what a hostess gift is?
Manners matter. Being gracious shows character and should be taught in childhood. Children tend to adopt the morals and values they learn as children in their adult life. My girls wrote thank you cards for every occasion as they grew up, when they graduated, I told them I expected them to continue the practice as adults. If they don’t, its on them, not me. It doesn’t take much time at all to write a small, heartfelt thank you note to someone who went out of their way to give you a gift.
Keep various boxes of thank you and blank note cards at home for you and your children to use. If you are of the crafty variety, you can even make note cards on your own or with your children. Every effort you make to teach the importance of gratitude will multiply in your family. When your child receives an invitation to a party, show them the RSVP and tell them how important it is to contact the host. Have them listen to you call with your acceptance or decline. Tell your child why it is important to contact a host. In these economic times it is important to help a host know if they should be baking a cake at home, or ordering one from Costco to feed all of the guests.
Imagine yourself sitting at home with your Pampered Chef representative waiting for the women (and maybe men) to attend your party. Imagine the pain and embarrassment you would feel if no one came. The sense of being forgotten, unimportant or humiliated would be prevail. It would not occur to you that every single one of your invited guests had either a prior commitment, the stomach flu or not enough spare money to attend. In that moment of abandonment horror, sitting alone with a Pampered Chef rep who will be making no money that night, you would simply feel sick to your stomach. You would dread work the next morning facing the very women (and men) who blew you off. The fact is, none of them knew that they weren’t the only ones who didn’t show up. To them it was a small thing to be unable to make it to your party, but to you it was a social devastation. How much easier would it have been to contact you and say that they could not be there. A simple heads up. After you saw that no one could make it, you would have the ability to contact your Pampered Chef rep and cancel or reschedule and all would be right in your world.
It’s the new year. Time to start fresh and new in all things. Make manners a priority this and every year. Bring teaching moments into your home and model the importance of thank you notes, RSVP’s, hostess gifts and the like for your family.
If you have a topic of interest that you would like represented in a column this year, send your request to lifecoach@shasta.comfor consideration.

Merry Moment

25 Dec
December 25, 2012

As available in the 12-25-12 edition of the Red Bluff Daily News:

I am not sure if my column will run on Christmas this year. Perhaps you won’t see these words until two weeks from now, after New Year’s is over. Nonetheless, I want to wish all of you a Merry Moment this year. I want to wish you the one thing that I think can change you the most; living truly and really in the moment.
About four years ago my family visited Chichen Itza in the Mayan country. We toured the temples, met local people and learned many things about the Mayan prediction for 12-21-12. In the years between our visit and now, I often wondered about the prediction. Was it true? I found myself on 12-20-12 bargaining out acceptable ways to end my time on Earth. I knew I didn’t want to burn, be crushed or drown. I was hoping CVS pharmacy might sell cyanide pills, but no such luck. I realized I was left like everyone else waiting to see if the world was going to swallow me up.
The thing is, I believe in the rapture more than I do the Mayan end of the world prediction. I believe where the Bible says we do not know the time. So, my mind went back and forth between the hope for a simple depart from Earth via Jesus versus an apocalyptic blow up, but I knew the Mayans hadn’t heard The Good News.
In the days leading up to 12-21-12, I began realizing something we have heard in clever quotes and in the words of eternal optimists: Live in the moment. The notion that what is happening at this moment is truly all that we have. If you can find the way to be in the moment, as kooky as that sounds, you are truly living. If you can will yourself to feel everything there is to feel in the moment you are in, you are living well. Taste that spoonful of ice cream, feel the calorie burn on the treadmill. Feel the love you have being with your loved ones. Feel the pain of that break up.
If we had no camera’s, no home video, no You Tube. If the only way we had to capture a memory is in our hearts and minds, we might actually live in the moment. Imagine if you couldn’t look at baby pictures of your child and remember when. Imagine if there were no recipes to remember how to make your favorite dish and you had to figure it out in the moment so the memory was there to make it next time. If we didn’t have artificial ways to capture today so we can relive it tomorrow, we may spend today living now.
My hope for you is that you have a Merry Moment this season. I hope that you internalize that all of life is fleeting. This moment is all we have. We should embrace it for what it is. This moment isn’t meant for thinking about a tomorrow that may never come or a yesterday that can’t be changed. This moment is for savoring. The fact is that if you live in the moment you capture it’s power. If you love your moment, you have the power to stay in it. If you are loving your family in this moment, don’t leave it to think about what else you should be doing. If you are hate your moment, you have the power to change what is happening and make a different moment. If you are fighting with someone for no good reason, you can take hold of the moment and change what is happening.
By my calculations I have written 364 columns. I have had 364 moments to affect your thinking. I want these moments to count. I want them to matter to someone. I want to talk about people who matter and give advice that matters. When I write, I could not be more in the moment. Merry Moment to you.

Merry Moment

25 Dec
December 25, 2012

As available in the 12-25-12 edition of the Red Bluff Daily News:

I am not sure if my column will run on Christmas this year. Perhaps you won’t see these words until two weeks from now, after New Year’s is over. Nonetheless, I want to wish all of you a Merry Moment this year. I want to wish you the one thing that I think can change you the most; living truly and really in the moment.
About four years ago my family visited Chichen Itza in the Mayan country. We toured the temples, met local people and learned many things about the Mayan prediction for 12-21-12. In the years between our visit and now, I often wondered about the prediction. Was it true? I found myself on 12-20-12 bargaining out acceptable ways to end my time on Earth. I knew I didn’t want to burn, be crushed or drown. I was hoping CVS pharmacy might sell cyanide pills, but no such luck. I realized I was left like everyone else waiting to see if the world was going to swallow me up.
The thing is, I believe in the rapture more than I do the Mayan end of the world prediction. I believe where the Bible says we do not know the time. So, my mind went back and forth between the hope for a simple depart from Earth via Jesus versus an apocalyptic blow up, but I knew the Mayans hadn’t heard The Good News.
In the days leading up to 12-21-12, I began realizing something we have heard in clever quotes and in the words of eternal optimists: Live in the moment. The notion that what is happening at this moment is truly all that we have. If you can find the way to be in the moment, as kooky as that sounds, you are truly living. If you can will yourself to feel everything there is to feel in the moment you are in, you are living well. Taste that spoonful of ice cream, feel the calorie burn on the treadmill. Feel the love you have being with your loved ones. Feel the pain of that break up.
If we had no camera’s, no home video, no You Tube. If the only way we had to capture a memory is in our hearts and minds, we might actually live in the moment. Imagine if you couldn’t look at baby pictures of your child and remember when. Imagine if there were no recipes to remember how to make your favorite dish and you had to figure it out in the moment so the memory was there to make it next time. If we didn’t have artificial ways to capture today so we can relive it tomorrow, we may spend today living now.
My hope for you is that you have a Merry Moment this season. I hope that you internalize that all of life is fleeting. This moment is all we have. We should embrace it for what it is. This moment isn’t meant for thinking about a tomorrow that may never come or a yesterday that can’t be changed. This moment is for savoring. The fact is that if you live in the moment you capture it’s power. If you love your moment, you have the power to stay in it. If you are loving your family in this moment, don’t leave it to think about what else you should be doing. If you are hate your moment, you have the power to change what is happening and make a different moment. If you are fighting with someone for no good reason, you can take hold of the moment and change what is happening.
By my calculations I have written 364 columns. I have had 364 moments to affect your thinking. I want these moments to count. I want them to matter to someone. I want to talk about people who matter and give advice that matters. When I write, I could not be more in the moment. Merry Moment to you.

Welcome To My Mostly Empty Nest

18 Dec
December 18, 2012

 

I have four Christmas trees this year. Yep, someone said that my house looks like the House of Design this year, which has to be one of the best compliments ever. Not only do I have four Christmas trees this year, they were all decorated the weekend after Thanksgiving which is something I have never done. Chalk it up to empty nest.
There is something rewarding about the time you gain when your children begin to grow up and create lives outside of your home. You have time to decorate, make gourmet dinners or no dinner at all. You have time to read, write, and the house gets less messy. There are many, many things you can enjoy as your children broaden their horizons and leave you to your own devices. If you let it happen.
When my daughters first left home, leaving only my son to receive all of the attention, command of all of the cereal and all the benefits of being the baby, I was sad and didn’t quit know who I was. It took about forty-five days for me to wade through my situational depression and start to appreciate what was missing. The lack of teens fighting over nothing was missing. The huge piles of laundry were missing. The need to hide things I did not want to share was missing. In their absence my husband and I created new routines that were self-centered and self-indulgent.
I know a lot of mom’s with kids my age are facing their children moving to school, getting married and moving away or some form of seeming abandonment. Take heart. It isn’t so bad. Nature hates a void, what is empty will be filled. You have an opportunity to create a new experience where your old responsibilities once lay. You my dears have freedom. Don’t confuse being alone with being lonely. That guy you are married to but only connected with on date nights because the kids were your priority, he may be starving for your attention and you have the power to awaken the potential in your marriage. That degree you always wanted to get- the new semester will be starting soon, go sign up. Couldn’t afford dinners out because the family was too large, dinner for two is very affordable.
The facts are facts. Your kids are going to grow up and out on their own. It is healthy, it is natural and it is a good thing. The freedom is exhilarating if you let it. Freedom to be all about yourself with none of the mommy or daddy guilt. Freedom to be home when you want to be and out when you want to be. Freedom to go to a movie on a Tuesday night if you choose. Freedom to shower with the door open, listen to your kind of music in the car and put nuts in the baked goods if you want to.
My nest is mostly empty. I decorated four Christmas trees this year. My house is calm, mostly quiet and usually clean. My Christmas season is merry and bright. I have embraced this thing called life after teens and I encourage you to enjoy it as well. Before you know it we will be on to being grandparents and then the real fun begins.

Welcome To My Mostly Empty Nest

18 Dec
December 18, 2012

 

I have four Christmas trees this year. Yep, someone said that my house looks like the House of Design this year, which has to be one of the best compliments ever. Not only do I have four Christmas trees this year, they were all decorated the weekend after Thanksgiving which is something I have never done. Chalk it up to empty nest.
There is something rewarding about the time you gain when your children begin to grow up and create lives outside of your home. You have time to decorate, make gourmet dinners or no dinner at all. You have time to read, write, and the house gets less messy. There are many, many things you can enjoy as your children broaden their horizons and leave you to your own devices. If you let it happen.
When my daughters first left home, leaving only my son to receive all of the attention, command of all of the cereal and all the benefits of being the baby, I was sad and didn’t quit know who I was. It took about forty-five days for me to wade through my situational depression and start to appreciate what was missing. The lack of teens fighting over nothing was missing. The huge piles of laundry were missing. The need to hide things I did not want to share was missing. In their absence my husband and I created new routines that were self-centered and self-indulgent.
I know a lot of mom’s with kids my age are facing their children moving to school, getting married and moving away or some form of seeming abandonment. Take heart. It isn’t so bad. Nature hates a void, what is empty will be filled. You have an opportunity to create a new experience where your old responsibilities once lay. You my dears have freedom. Don’t confuse being alone with being lonely. That guy you are married to but only connected with on date nights because the kids were your priority, he may be starving for your attention and you have the power to awaken the potential in your marriage. That degree you always wanted to get- the new semester will be starting soon, go sign up. Couldn’t afford dinners out because the family was too large, dinner for two is very affordable.
The facts are facts. Your kids are going to grow up and out on their own. It is healthy, it is natural and it is a good thing. The freedom is exhilarating if you let it. Freedom to be all about yourself with none of the mommy or daddy guilt. Freedom to be home when you want to be and out when you want to be. Freedom to go to a movie on a Tuesday night if you choose. Freedom to shower with the door open, listen to your kind of music in the car and put nuts in the baked goods if you want to.
My nest is mostly empty. I decorated four Christmas trees this year. My house is calm, mostly quiet and usually clean. My Christmas season is merry and bright. I have embraced this thing called life after teens and I encourage you to enjoy it as well. Before you know it we will be on to being grandparents and then the real fun begins.

Tai Bickert You Matter

12 Dec
December 12, 2012

 

I will never forget a conversation that I had with Tai. She was explaining to me why she wanted to own a Mr. Pickles franchise. She had an interest in owning a business and wanted to be able to maintain the flexibility she needed to be involved in her young daughter’s lives. She wanted to work as close to 8-5 as possible so she could be home in the evenings to be with her family. A Mr. Pickles franchise offered her the time flexibility she wanted and had the added bonus of providing a valuable product to the community.
At some point in her decision making process, she redirected her energy and broke away from the Mr. Pickles franchise and created Tai’s Deli in the same location with the same service and the same enthusiasm she had when she started out. Again, she weighed what mattered to her in the way of family and business and took steps to bring satisfaction in two major areas of life- work and home.
Tai is an entrepreneurial woman. She is front and center at the sandwich counter and at the soccer field. She has found the harmony of work and home that all women want and only a few go out and grab. It takes guts, good instincts and a supportive family to carve out a niche for yourself when the odds are sometimes against you. Tai is an inspiration to young girls and women who want to take the leap of faith and do something that has no guarantee of success.
I have no doubt that in the beginning Tai must have felt fear. She had the backing of her husband, her friends, her children and a proven franchise, but imagine the courage it took and the belief in yourself to break away from the security of a franchise because you simply knew you could make what was good even better. That is courage that morphs into wisdom. Tai most certainly has valuable lessons and encouraging advice that would benefit women (and men) who have an idea, a dream or some product or service that could benefit their families and their communities.
Tai matters because she had a vision to find a way to create value for the community, a lifestyle for her family and an environment for employees and customers to enjoy sandwiches and more. Tai had the idea, but she had to take the steps to make it a reality. I have no doubt that there were times when it felt hard, not worth the effort and even frustrating. I bet you she had no idea that some of the issues she would have to face existed. I bet you that if she knew now what she didn’t know then, she may have even talked herself out of it all. The fact is, she stayed the fight and she continues to fight every day. Being your own boss has its advantages, but it has plenty of challenges too.
Be like Tai, be willing to go and get the dream, whatever that dream may be. Be like Tai, face any fears you may have about why it won’t work, can’t work or is too hard and just refuse to quit. Be Like Tai, know that it will be hard, it will be frustrating but it will also be worth it all.

Tai Bickert You Matter

12 Dec
December 12, 2012

 

I will never forget a conversation that I had with Tai. She was explaining to me why she wanted to own a Mr. Pickles franchise. She had an interest in owning a business and wanted to be able to maintain the flexibility she needed to be involved in her young daughter’s lives. She wanted to work as close to 8-5 as possible so she could be home in the evenings to be with her family. A Mr. Pickles franchise offered her the time flexibility she wanted and had the added bonus of providing a valuable product to the community.
At some point in her decision making process, she redirected her energy and broke away from the Mr. Pickles franchise and created Tai’s Deli in the same location with the same service and the same enthusiasm she had when she started out. Again, she weighed what mattered to her in the way of family and business and took steps to bring satisfaction in two major areas of life- work and home.
Tai is an entrepreneurial woman. She is front and center at the sandwich counter and at the soccer field. She has found the harmony of work and home that all women want and only a few go out and grab. It takes guts, good instincts and a supportive family to carve out a niche for yourself when the odds are sometimes against you. Tai is an inspiration to young girls and women who want to take the leap of faith and do something that has no guarantee of success.
I have no doubt that in the beginning Tai must have felt fear. She had the backing of her husband, her friends, her children and a proven franchise, but imagine the courage it took and the belief in yourself to break away from the security of a franchise because you simply knew you could make what was good even better. That is courage that morphs into wisdom. Tai most certainly has valuable lessons and encouraging advice that would benefit women (and men) who have an idea, a dream or some product or service that could benefit their families and their communities.
Tai matters because she had a vision to find a way to create value for the community, a lifestyle for her family and an environment for employees and customers to enjoy sandwiches and more. Tai had the idea, but she had to take the steps to make it a reality. I have no doubt that there were times when it felt hard, not worth the effort and even frustrating. I bet you she had no idea that some of the issues she would have to face existed. I bet you that if she knew now what she didn’t know then, she may have even talked herself out of it all. The fact is, she stayed the fight and she continues to fight every day. Being your own boss has its advantages, but it has plenty of challenges too.
Be like Tai, be willing to go and get the dream, whatever that dream may be. Be like Tai, face any fears you may have about why it won’t work, can’t work or is too hard and just refuse to quit. Be Like Tai, know that it will be hard, it will be frustrating but it will also be worth it all.
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