Conversation Shake-Up~

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Over a year ago, my son and his wife gave us a box of conversation questions from a company called Table Topics.  I thought it was a clever idea, fun.  What I have actually recognized about their value is the unique way fresh questions can unlock meaningful conversations in a whole new way!

It is so easy to get locked into routine conversations around work, ministry, money, and children.  We partner with our spouse and we parent our children; which is all good.  But, what if we make an effort to simply want to KNOW more about those we love rather than spending the bulk of our time directing schedules and managing behaviour?

What if we gave ourselves a time-out from routine conversations at the table or in the car, using that time to ask about dreams, favorite things, ideas, and best memories? Perhaps even using that time to ask about the “highs” and “lows” of the day!  I imagine you will experience some un-expected moments of fresh understanding.  For some reason an unexpected question often takes the direction of the connection to a new place.

Table Topics is a great tool, but if we are intentional enough to want to experience fresh insights with our friends and loved ones; we can easily prepare some of our own, having them ready to use when the time arises!

As a coach I am asking my clients questions all the time. I have been amazed to watch a quality question give way to a truly rich conversation.

Perhaps this is the year to shake out of the mundane and make your conversations really count!

Sweet mama~~Love thyself!!

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Young mothers; they are so precious.  Recently I have had the joy of observing and spending time with some incredible young mothers who inspire & amaze me!  These gals want to be the best mothers; having meaningful impact on the precious little lives they’ve been gifted.   However, along with loving these sweet little ones; these women try to keep a clean house, love their husbands, and put healthy meals on the table.  Some work full-time outside the home.  Again, I am amazed.

I am also concerned. When do these sweet mothers allow themselves to take personal time?  When is it ok to have dinner out with a friend, get a message, or go for a run?  I am concerned that most mothers put themselves at the bottom of the list of “to do’s”. I am concerned that mothers pour themselves out to the point of exhaustion; unable or unwilling to make time to “love themselves”.

At 55, with many years of hindsight I would love to send a challenge out to you sweet mothers!!  Love yourselves, take time for yourselves, find ways to fill your cup!!  This is a gift you give your little ones!!

Here are some tips I’ve gleaned from my life and the lives of other successful mothers:

1.  Get up early enough to connect with your Saviour. Jesus Calling is a devotional book that will encourage you.  Take 20 minutes to be encouraged and to pour your heart out to the One who loves you the most!

2.  Eat Breakfast. Ladies, a cup of coffee is not breakfast.  A good breakfast with protein and grains will sustain you.  You must eat!!!

3.  When the babies/ children rest~~ YOU REST!!  seriously, dishes can wait!!  Take 30 minutes to unplug.  Zzzzzzz……..

4.  Laugh~ with your children, with your husband, with a friend.  Laughter makes a heart lighter. 🙂

5.  Extend grace!! In the season of babies, toddlers…and well, frankly even teens, you need to be gracious with yourself and others…. the house may not be perfect.  Your hair may have been in a pigtail way too long.  The laundry pile may be bigger than you want.  Extend grace!!  Snuggling with your little ones, reading a book to them, singing silly songs; these things are the riches of life.

6. Be careful what you say “YES” to. Your time is precious, don’t give it away unless it really, really matters to you!  There are seasons and assignments in all our lives. There will be a day when those little “ponies” will ride away. I know, trust me!!

Ladies!  Have you ever been on an airplane and listened to the instructions about using the oxygen mask in an emergency?  The flight attendants always give special instructions to those traveling with children:  Put your own oxygen mask on before you place the mask on your child. ”  Hmmmmm…..see the irony?

Sweet mommies~~ Love Thyself!! 🙂

How did you find the energy, Mom
To do all the things you did,
To be teacher, nurse and counselor
To me, when I was a kid.How did you do it all, Mom,
Be a chauffeur, cook and friend,
Yet find time to be a playmate,
I just can’t comprehend.I see now it was love, Mom
That made you come whenever I’d call,
Your inexhaustible love, Mom
And I thank you for it all.