Approval Disease

I feel a possible book coming out of this, but that will definitely be a God thing. English, grammar, punctuation, has never been my strong suit.

Hey my name is Gina and I am a recovering people pleaser. Maybe you know of someone that struggles with this disease. You probably wouldn’t classify it as a disease, unless you have struggled with it. It can wreck your life if you cannot rewire your brain.

What do I mean by that? My world for the last few years of my life has been wrapped up in meeting others’ needs to gain their approval. Saying Yes to almost everything. Projects, little errands, answering endless phone calls, all in the name of this approval disease.

Facebook and Instagram created this HUGE snowball effect in my life. Watching other’s posts get more likes, more comments, and straight up more traction. Meanwhile, I was lucky to get 1 or 2. It would hit me like a ton of bricks, like a smack in the face. I couldn’t understand what they were doing that was so different. I began analyzing, at times copying their methods, appealing to the masses. It was such a sickness.

Then, almost a month ago, I got this deep, deep feeling that I needed to take a break from social media. I had done these breaks before, they would last like 2 days. But, God was asking for 21 days!!! 21 days without approval. Now ya have to know something, I use social media for my business. This was asking a lot. However, I cannot argue with the Almighty God.

I am on day 11. Something that also makes this a very unique experience is, we are currently down to one vehicle. One vehicle that fits 3 people, we are a family of 5. I have not been able to leave my home in 25 days. I have not received what you would call outside approval as well. These 11 days have literally been me and God.

This disease is something that is getting healed very deeply in me. It is rooted in not knowing my true identity. When I say “not knowing,” I know logically my identity is in Jesus Christ. However, living that logic out, wasn’t happening.

I am looking forward to sharing more with you all. This is a recovery process that has been so needed and it has already impacted my life immensely.

Unpopular Parenting

I have mentioned in a previous post that I have a 10 year old daughter. This phase of her life, has been bringing insight into areas where I continue to struggle.

I always thought that once you became a mom, you would just have all the answers. You would have overcome all the issues where you once struggled. However, that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

I parent in a way that I feel is unpopular amongst many. I don’t see myself as any better than my children. Have you ever taken a moment where you are getting ready to discipline your child, and really looked at the root of the issue? Let me share an example.

My daughters fight routine. They would rather have fun than complete a task that needs to be done. Sounds pretty normal amongst kids right?! They fight school work. Anything that doesn’t give instant gratification, they fight. This becomes one of our daily arguments. Explaining the importance of responsibility in their lives. Yet, I know for myself, I don’t want to do any of that responsibility stuff either. I mean, Do any of you LOVE to wake up early to go to that work meeting? Or do you LOVE to wake up early to get your kiddos out of bed to make sure they are prepared for school? I know I am not thrilled about either of those.

So, why at times do we expect our kids to put on this happy face, and then diligently do the work? I am 20 some years older than my oldest, and I still fight the lazy stuff. I really have no reason to get angry over an unclean room.

With that in mind, I parent like a coach/guide. Walking out the principles alongside of my kids. Sharing my own struggles at times with the same area. It can be uncomfortable to get vulnerable with your child. I have wondered if I will lose their respect. Yet, my experience has shown so far, that they respect me more and open up more often.

You may be thinking this sounds like being their friend. It is absolutely not that. It is more like validation. Seeing the struggle for what it is, and then showing them the next step to overcome it.

My husband was raised in a home where his mom was a “do as I say, not as I do” type of parent. Being strong willed, he fought consistently against his mom. He saw through the farce. She would become even more strict. This type of authoritarian parenting ruined their relationship. To this day, the tension is very thick between them. Due to this experience, my husband and myself swore we would not parent our children in the same way. My daughters have asked, “Why do I have to make my bed, when your’s is not made yet?” At that point I could get all parenty and mad. I don’t though, they have a valid point.

Checks and Balances. I see my kiddos as a system that prevents me from going crazy with power. Parenthood can go to your head if not checked. Leaving an opportunity for your children to come to you in a respectful manner and “check” you, prevents that from happening.

So yes, I feel my parenting can be unpopular. But I am okay with it. I know I have not arrived when it comes to overcoming struggles, and I am okay with my children being mini teachers to help me.

Think before you Speak

Hey friends!

How did yesterday go, with changing your “have to’s” to gratitudes??

I had an interesting discussion with my middle daughter, the one with a stronger will. She was once again, fighting the clean up time. I brought up the idea of, “she gets to clean up her toys”. Her eyes became saucer sized and she goes, “What?” I proceeded to explain that having toys is a blessing, something to be thankful for. That being able to clean them up, means that she has been blessed with them. It took her a bit to get it, but I think she finally got it.

After that encounter, I think over the next few days I will focus a bit on our words and our mindset, both here and in my home.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Think before you Speak?” I recently heard of a great acronym that I am using with my daughters.

T – Is it Truthful?
H – Is it Helpful?
I – Is it Inspiring?
N – Is it Necessary?
K – Is it Kind?

I have been teaching them that if it doesn’t fit all 5 categories, then they do not need to speak it. It has been a great learning tool, not only for them but for me. Quite frankly, being a stay at home mom can be tough, especially when you homeschool. We each have our own will, which then butts up against another’s will. Words have been said, that don’t fit any of those categories. The damage has been done. However, we can always grow, we can always make changes.

I hope these challenges are inspiring you to look a bit closer at your life. To see that you can always grow and get better.

Talk soon!

A Mom’s Have to Do List

1. I have to do the dishes
2. I have to do the laundry
3. I have to make dinner
4. I have to vacuum the floors

Anyone else have a list like this? I don’t know about you, but I can get in a pretty rotten mood with all these “have to’s.”

My middle daughter, has a bit of a strong will. When it comes to giving her a list of “have to’s,” the endless questions ensue. She has realized something that I think many of us know, but fail to think. We don’t HAVE to do anything. Yet, many of us just quote the age old statement, “Some things we may not feel like doing, but HAVE to do anyway.”

What if we changed that mindset though? What if we used some of that strong will mentality? The mentality that requires me to think five steps ahead of my daughter, in order to get her to own the task and want to do it.

Follow me for just second. What if I said, I get to do the laundry. I know, I know…but hang in there with me. Why do I get to do the laundry? Well..because my girls have clothes to keep them warm. God has blessed us with clothes. See where I am going? I just turned my “have to” into a gratitude. What if we did that with every “have to” in our lives?

The challenge I am giving myself this week is to change my “have to” mindset into a gratitude mindset. I bet I will have a better attitude towards my huge pile of laundry and the endless dishes. What about you? What is one of your “have to’s” that could change into gratitude?

Running after the F word

Now before you assume anything, the F word I am talking about, is Failure. Anyone else ever had a Fear of Failure? Like a legit fear. Growing up, I would not try to do things, for fear of failing.

I thought that if I failed, people would put the title, Failure, on me. What ended up happening, is a cycle of not even trying. Not trying is Failure! I had allowed myself to become what I had always feared.

If you have a child, you have probably heard the words, “I can’t”, come out of her mouth. I have three, and that statement has now been banned from our home. I can’t, leaves No room for improvement. It says, Failure.

My oldest, at the age of 5 developed this fear of failing. In fact, her teachers in school, thought she had a learning disability at first. She wouldn’t complete her work, without knowing that her answer was correct. She would ask the teachers if she was on the correct path of thinking, before she would even begin her work. She didn’t want to get one answer wrong. Now, she is 10, and I am homeschooling her. My biggest struggle is pointing out her faults in her school work, as well as just normal behavior. She breaks down instantly, and begins to beat herself up. She has admitted that she never wants to fail, she wants to do everything correctly.

Can you imagine that pressure? To never allow yourself to ever make a mistake. So, I did something, I shared my “failures” with her. I shared what my fear of failing did to my own life. Then, I told her, “I expect you to Fail at things.” Her eyes got real wide. She thought I would think less of her, if she failed.

Isn’t that the root? Fear of Failing is an identity issue. I have struggled with people pleasing for as long as I can remember. The fear of saying No, the fear of failing, the fear that someone won’t like me. Why??? Because I was Not happy with myself. I had allowed my short comings to define me. I had allowed comparison to rob me of my uniqueness.

If you are a Christ follower, you know every person is an Original, Unique, with a Purpose that can only be accomplished by them. God knows I will fail, He knows that in my mistakes I grow. I can never disappoint Him, because He already knew I would mess up. To me, that is so Freeing! He loves me, accepts me, mistakes and all.

So whether you are dealing with your own fear of failure or you have a child that has one, let me encourage you with, God already knows your mistakes. He already died for those mistakes. Fear is just the absence of allowing His True love to take over your life. To walk in the confidence of your full identity, which is Daughter of the Most High God.

So I am running after Failure, because as I keep trying, keep doing, keep being who I was created to be, I will not be a Failure.

Dear Me….

Every wonder what you would say to your younger self, about your life now? Would it center around the mistakes, to help her not make them? Would it offer encouragment to let her know that she is stronger than she realizes?

I realized the other day, that my oldest is a really close mini me. The struggles she faces, as she is going through her tweens, reminds me so much of myself. The comparison trap, I thought we would avoid due to homeschooling, is in full swing. Comparing how she handles life’s struggles to that of her friends’. Trying to figure out why she cannot rein in her emotions as well as them.

I was her growing up. In fact, I can still be her at times. Comparing someone’s Highs to my Lows. Doesn’t make much sense, but we do it. Social media has caused us to compare a doctored up snapshot of someone’s life to our mom bun and goldfish cracker filled kitchen floor. We begin to feel less than, as a mom, wife, and friend.

It is a lie, if we sat for a brief few minutes, we would see that. But, the damage was done in that moment, that we didn’t take those thoughts captive. When we played the comparison game for even a few minutes.

I am currently on a hiatus/fast from facebook and instagram for this very reason. To gain back, what I allowed social media to steal. My identity.

As I get ready to start another day with my three girls, I am challenging myself to see my identity in a new way. Not in my lack, but in my strengths. Then, funneling that challenge down to my daughters. As women, I feel we tend to struggle more with identity than men. When we make mistakes, or have to ask for help, often times we can see it as weakness. I am working on changing that mentality.

What about you? Who are you? What are your strengths? Celebrate those today!

Welcome!

Welcome Friend!

This is the place where you will find a regular mom working out this Wellness thing everyday.

This blog page came out of some desperate soul searching prayer. For a few years now, I have been a Wellness teacher with Young Living. I have loved every minute of learning how our bodies and plants work together. Yet, something was missing in my passion for really helping others. I almost felt a bit fake when I taught, and shared.

I took some time and sought God. You will find out as you continue to read my posts, that my Heavenly Father is Everything to me. He is my CEO. He brought a verse to my attention, which then became the inspiration for the name, Stewarding Wellness.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

19 “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

A Steward according to Wikipedia is a person who manages another’s property. According to the verse above, I am not my own, I am God’s. As a Christ follower, that hit me pretty hard. I realized the reason I was feeling fake, was because I was not being a good steward of my Wellness. Yes, I try and buy as much chemical free products as I can. Yes, I take proactive measures for my health with essential oils and supplements. However, that is pretty much where it stopped. I was failing in the eating right, exercising, and a few other areas that one would say falls under Wellness.

So, with all of that out in the open, I felt led to share this journey with others. To encourage others that may be realizing the same. Oh, and to do it in a way that fits any budget. As a one income family, I know the money crunching. I have felt the money struggle with eating healthier. I don’t want Wellness to be linked with the Rich. God says in His Word that we are to be good stewards of Everything that He has given us. I believe that not only includes our finances, but our Wellness too. So, if you are ready to go on a journey with me, stay tuned!