December 2017

8 Ways You Become More Amazing After Having Kids

family being amazing

People tend to talk about negative things when talking about their kids. You are more likely to hear that kids keep you up all night than that they make you a better person.

The problem is that it makes some people think having kids is a bad idea. But that isn’t true, children are a challenge, but they change your life for the better. Having kids forces you to be more amazing.

The reason why this is important is that people often hear complaints about kids. We figure as parents this is normal, but it may discourage good people from having children.

Worse so, lousy information affects people who could be better parents. On the surface, people who plan to have children are conscientious. As a result, too many negative stories are more likely to dissuade them.

People who don’t consider consequences will have a child regardless of what they hear.

The following are eight ways in which you become more amazing after having kids.

1) You Get Your Priorities Sorted Out

Having children is a significant life change. Children change your life, and where it is heading. With this change, you reevaluate what you are doing with your time. From there, you figure out what is essential and compatible with your lifestyle.

For me, having a child made it clear that I needed to work on my writing. It also helped me realize I needed to give up on my fruitless side-projects and freelance work.

Children take up a considerable amount of time, especially in the beginning. As long as they are awake, they need supervision. That said, it gets easier after a year, at that point children are a little bit more independent.

The thing is, you no longer have time to waste. If you want to get something done, you need to do it while the baby is asleep. You will also notice that the baby wears you out, so you need more sleep.

Parkinson’s law says “any project will fill the time you give it.” In this sense, when you have less time, you squeeze in more work. Your projects will have stricter timelines, and you will need focused attention.

When you have less time, you use it more wisely. You are forced to consider everything you are working on and focus on fewer things.

2) You Learn To Have More Patience

Before having a kid, I was annoyed by crying babies on airplanes. It is still annoying, but now I understand and don’t hold it against the parents,

Someone could be a bad parent, so that is why the baby is crying. But more likely, they are trying their best, and the baby is crying anyways.

There are three reasons why a baby gets upset, either they are sleepy, hungry or hurt. On a plane, it is loud, and the air pressure can hurt ears. A baby may have trouble sleeping, and this will make them grumpy, and more annoying.

The thing is, you tend to understand why something happens better when it has happened to you. At first, you learn to deal with your crying baby, then other crying babies.

In general, these experiences will help you deal with other annoyances in the future.

In time, you are prepared to deal with other grumpy babies. With practice, this translates into a better understanding of all your annoying situations.

3) You Learn To Sing

One day, long ago while my mother was singing to my younger brother, he stopped her and said, “Mommy, sing your best!” She stopped and told him she already was.

When you have kids, you need to learn how to sing. You discover at times that nothing else will work and you need to sing. Your skill level doesn’t matter, but your willingness to sing does.

You will realize you’re glad that someone sang to you as a child. Reason being, you still remember the words to some of the songs you heard back then.

Kid’s songs get repetitive fast. For this reason, I’ve started making up songs. My daughter hasn’t complained yet.

The songs I sing match the tempo of songs she already knows, so I only need to make up the words. I mix observations and rhyme, and these songs can go on for as long as necessary.

Singing is satisfying to your creativity and gives you a chance to interact with your child. Songs also help you deal with stress and anxiety, so it’s a win-win.

4) You Learn To Function On Less Sleep

Not getting enough sleep sucks, but it is something you get better at with a child. In the first few months, babies don’t sleep well. You never know when they will wake up and need something.

At first, it was tough, the exhaustion got to my wife and me, and it was a pretty stressful time for us.

But after awhile, we got better at dealing with it. Now, seeing how busy I am when my daughter is awake, I’ve made a habit of waking up before her.

Waking up at 6 a.m. has made me a morning person, this is something I’ve never been before. That said, I’ve come to realized I could work much better in the morning then at night (as a former night owl).

No one wants to be tired all the time, but you learn to deal with it. It forces you to go to bed earlier, which compensates for the early wake ups.

You will be sleepy, especially in the beginning. But in time, this should motivate better habits. When you can start with sleep training, life will be better for everyone.

5) You Get Out More

My wife and I are both introverts, so most of the time we would rather stay in than go out. In the past, a typical weekend may have involved going for a walk or going out for dinner. Otherwise, it wasn’t uncommon for us to stay in our apartment.

Now that we have our daughter, we get restless if we stay in too long. We usually make plans and try to figure out where we can go to do something.

We often go to visit my parents. They love our daughter and can’t wait to see her when we arrive. A visit gives us a break, and them a chance to see her.

When we go sightseeing, our daughter likes to see things she hasn’t seen before. But, the travelling at this point is more for us. We all get something out of it.

Getting out is also breaking our routine and doing something different. For my wife, especially during maternity leave, it was the only chance to get out of the house.

We go places more than ever before, but this doesn’t mean spending too much money. It’s about getting out, going places and seeing things. While at other times, it gives us a break from our baby.

6) You Learn To Make Friends Again

When my wife was pregnant, we met a few couples who were having babies around the same time.

Talking to them, we had something in common and would soon share a similar experience. My wife was also able to chat with women in the same situation as her, who could even speak her language.

Once you have kids, you spend more of your time with people who are in a similar situation. You are all dealing with kids and doing kid stuff. You may also share daycare or sporting events. These events will give you a chance to make friends with your child’s friend’s parents.

Unfortunately, you don’t have much time for old friends or friends without kids. To see them, you need to leave your spouse home alone with your child in the evening. That isn’t something you can do all the time.

It will be easier to be friends with people who also have kids. You will have more in common, and the same obligations and responsibilities.

7) You Learn To Be More Responsible

This one is noticeable and quite significant. Without a child, you are in complete control of your life, and you can do what you want when you want. You can make bad choices, without any consequences.

But with a kid, you always need to make better choices. Moreover, you need to be sure you are doing what is best for you and your family.

You also need to plan, because you can’t jump in the car and go for a drive. You always need to know what you are doing, and you must bring things for the baby.

Also, when driving, you need to consider the lives you are responsible for as well. You need to be more careful and respectful of the law. Speeding may have been fun in the past, but now it is a hazard.

Without a child, you can do whatever you want, but with one, you need to think twice. You always have to work at being a good parent and making better choices.

Even with work, you will need to make better choices. Reason being, you may want to build a better life that will allow you to be a better parent.

8) You Learn To Be More Positive

Being positive is something most of us are always trying to do. But with a kid, you have to be positive, even if you pretend at times.

Kids can sense how you feel, and feed off of it. If you are unhappy, your child will know, and it will cause them stress. You do not want to stress out your child any more than they are already stressed.

Luckily spending time with children makes you happy and more positive. Babies always smile and laugh when they are having fun. As a parent you will enjoy seeing this, so you will want to be cheerful around your child.

My daughter’s smile and laugh always makes me feel better. If I’ve had a bad day, getting home and seeing her puts me in a better mood.

One last thing that I’ve mentioned before. Having a baby may inspire you to work on your goals. In turn, the satisfaction of working on them will make you more positive about life in general.

You should be positive around your kids. Luckily kids make you more positive.

Having Children Makes You More Amazing

We’ve talked about some of the positive changes having a child could cause. And to be fair, children are a challenge that will change your life.

Having a child is a significant decision. But rather than focusing on the troublesome things, consider these positive points too.

In the end, having a child will make you a better person in many ways. So remember this, it isn’t as bad as some parents will have you believe.

Trying to Start a New Habit? Consider This.

building habits

Setting healthy habits is the key to an amazing life. But sometimes, you break your habits, and things get out of hand. Such a thing happened to me recently.

It all started Monday. I woke up on time and did two hours of work before getting ready for the office. But something was off, I felt hungry, and did not have enough to eat.

After arriving at work, the hunger hadn’t gone away, and I made an impulsive choice to eat an unhealthy snack. I ate a sugary granola bar and soon afterwards, grabbed another.

Later, someone put out some latte mix. I’d already broken my sugar rule, so I tried it. More still, someone put out chocolate bars. Using the same logic, I decided it was alright to eat a few. By the end of the day, I’d had more junk than the whole week before. Guilt or biological causes had me feeling bad.

When I was getting ready for bed, I had none of my usual self-control. In part because I was tired, but more so because I had broken my routines during the day. I decided not to set my alarm.

I didn’t wake up till much later than usual. After that everything was off. I ate more than usual for breakfast, and then I was late to drop off my daughter at daycare. The subway was delayed, and a bus didn’t show up. Finally, by the time I got to work I was over an hour late.

All this could be traced back to my choice on Monday morning. When I ate an unhealthy snack, I let chaos rule over my day. In turn, causing everything to go bad. My problematic days could have been avoided if I’d stuck with my habits.

Starting A New Habit

Starting a new habit is difficult, and usually takes a while to get going. You must first get into the right mindset. Once you get started, you are often disoriented and distracted.

Most often, when you decide you need a new habit, there is a trigger. You may have a bad week or look in the mirror and realize you are getting overweight and need to do something about it.

Other times, new habits come when you realize you want to do something. Changes occur out of a desire to make improvements more likely to happen. The most obvious example is when you set a goal. Usually, to realize that goal you need to repeat something every day.

When you set a goal, you need to plan it out to make it more likely to succeed. You need to be willing to realize what you are doing now and what you need to do to get where you want to go.

Sometimes you even need to consider what will happen if you don’t follow through with your goal. The motivation here comes from knowing everything you will lose if you do not take the action you need to.

When you start working on new goals, you must make a choice. You must choose to work at getting what it is that you want. Choosing requires letting go of the idea that you are the product of genes and upbringing.

The point is that, when working on a goal, you need to understand it is possible in the first place. To do that, you need to think that change is possible. You also need to believe that you can be and do something different from what you have always done. In essence, this is a choice and affirmation of a commitment to something.

It Is Difficult And You Will Resist

When you first decide to make a change, it will be painful. You may think about it or regret what you’ve chosen. You will see temptation at every step.

The first couple of days are the hardest when you put a new habit into place. If you are giving up sweets, you will see them everywhere. If it is smoking, you will see people smoking anywhere you go. Regardless, the temptations will be fierce.

But this is how you gain strength, and you need to see the temptations as a test that you’re motivated to pass. It is always a matter of changing the way you perceive the situation. At first as a temptation, then later avoidance becomes a reward. The more you resist, the higher the prize, the more likely you will not get pulled into the habit again.

At times, you will resist, you may even think that your bad habit wasn’t so bad. You may also start to feel your new practice is a problem. Why did you give up something you love so much? What about this “new” pattern is so much better? You may even wonder, who decided to take up this practice anyway?

In the beginning, is the most useful part in the development of a habit. The reason being, you will start to see the early benefits of the choices you’ve made. You will see the bad in what you used to do without thinking.

When you stop smoking, in the first few days you breathe easier. Your food will taste better, and your health will show signs of improving. But, you may not notice these things if you don’t try to pay attention, so pay attention.

An example of this is when you start a new job, which is a habit. In the beginning, you’ll notice all the things you did differently in your previous positions. In this sense, in the first couple of months, you get an honest impression of things. After that, your perception gets opaque with experience.

When You Accept Change It Gets Easier

Evolving and becoming a better person can be a long process. It is hardest in the beginning, and you need resilience.

But at some point, something will click, and you become sure that you have changed for the better. At the same time, you will accept your new habits as a representation of who you are. At this point, it becomes more natural. And instead of being a choice, it will become second nature and automatic.

You will also feel confident in what you have chosen. You will start to believe you are becoming the person you envisioned. In a sense this will be true, once you commit and accept a new habit, it becomes part of who you are.

When it gets easy, it is simpler to add more habits to the mix. If you make a significant life-affirming change, you will notice other habits come with it. The benefit here is that it will be easier to add them. Reason being, you are changing, so you are willing to accept the possibility of change. With acceptance, you become what you are.

Once you quit smoking, you may realize you also want to eat better. With this new habit, you may want to exercise. Working out will be more comfortable too because you won’t lose your breath so quickly. After a week of this, you will feel better about your body in many ways, and that will encourage you to do more.

New patterns will develop whether you notice it or not. Which is to say, your mind will pick up on better habits once you’ve committed to making one significant change. Your conviction and commitment will be subconsciously translated into better choices. At some point, this will become obvious to you in the rest of your actions. It will no longer be a choice and will be automatic.

At Last You Self-Enforce

The last step in developing a new habit, and the one that was illustrated in the story at the start. Self-enforcing happens when you’ve got things worked out. Usually, it happens after you’ve been working on your new habit for a while.

During the last phase, you start to feel sorry for breaking your habits. Fortunately, it is also when you don’t have to push as hard. But, now the punishment is more severe. You will feel worse about breaking your streak.

Consider this, after getting enough sleep for a few weeks. When you break the cycle, you realize how bad not getting enough sleep is. In the past 4 hours of sleep would have been ok. It might not have even affected you. But after getting into a better habit of getting enough sleep. Missing a night will make you exhausted and useless the next day.

You notice the adverse effects of your old bad habit right away. You will even see how far they extend, while in the past you didn’t notice anything at all.

If you cut out sweets, having a sweet will feel bad. If you exercise every day, not doing it will feel lazy.

Use This Process To Your Advantage

With any significant change, there are three steps. At first, you resist and fight yourself at every step.

Next, you get into the acceptance phase. You come to realize that it is best for you and can see it as a new and better way. At this point, it gets easier to maintain the habit, and with time it becomes second nature. Again, you may even pick up related habits without intention.

Finally, we self-enforce our new habits. We start to feel sorry for breaking our new way, and our bodies react negatively if we fall back to our old ways.

The key is to realize these steps. If you have a sense of where you are, you know what to expect and how to deal with what comes next. You can also use these steps as a measure of your success. That said, they will also help you understand why you feel the way you do.

The best thing you can do is choose a new habit and commit to it. Then the rest is a process, and that can be easier with faith in the process.

This faith will help you establish your new habits. No longer will give up when things get tough. Once you realize what is happening and why it is happening, it is easier to accept and move forward.

Making a new habit is a significant challenge, but it is worth it. You will be happy with the results and how they make you feel. Sometimes you have a second chance when it comes to breaking your habits. Your self-enforcing self will warn you about the effects of breaking your habits.

But remember, this warning shouldn’t be an excuse to break a habit. Instead, it will give you a chance to re-realize your potential bad choices.

Life is a bunch of habits, use them for good and good things will happen.