You are Invited – Time to Join the Rebellion

Tiny Acts of Rebellion

Are you sick and tired of trying to be perfect?

Are you exhausted trying to please everyone while wondering if they would like you even if you stopped doing for them?

Are you always doing because your success is based on your performance day-to-day (or minute-by-minute)?

Are you the queen of procrastination and it’s become less than pretty?

 

If you’ve said yes to any of those questions then…

IT IS TIME TO REBEL!

 

Now before you panic, we aren’t packing our bags to move to another state, leaving our families behind. No, this is a rebellion against the perfection, people-pleasing, performancism and procrastination. It is a call to stop trying harder and start

Living Braver.

 

Join the rebellion on Facebook on like the page Tiny Acts of Rebellion.

 

 

Bad Mom Monday- Braver Parenting: Doing vs. Being

BraverParenting“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.”  Ephesians 2:8 (ESV)

My son Christian loves basketball and played varsity all four years of high school. Throughout each season, he was respected for his ability to lead the team, for his calmness on the floor, and for his quick thinking.

Although Christian was an incredible player, he is not aggressive by nature. So he was never known for strength and drive. These weak areas cost him playing time and made him feel like he was failing his coach.

I always told Christian, “You played your best; be proud of that.” To me, bravery was showing up to each practice and each game, even when he felt like quitting.

THE Best vs. Your Best

As a parent of an athlete, I wanted my child to succeed. I was partial to my own kid; that’s just natural. It was hard to resist all the hype of athletics. As a single mom working two jobs, I struggled to keep up with all the “parent” clubs around sports and volunteering. I too, had to work at being my best, rather than run for “BEST mom of the year award.” I wanted to stay on the good side of all the other parents by being involved in all the fundraisers and every single volunteer event.

But even as an adult, I had to remind myself, to BE my best and feel proud of that. I could not be at all events. As tempting as it was to just over-commit, I would have driven not only myself crazy but my entire family, all for the sake of somehow making a difference for my son. But no amount of my DOING was going to change his playing time one bit.

My son knew with all his heart two things: First, he knew that I was his biggest fan. Second, he knew that I was working as hard as he was toward success. My best was good enough, even when that meant missing a game because I was working or saying no to that new pair of shoes everyone else had because I did not have the income to pay the price.

It was okay to BE where we were because it was our best on that given day. I had to be brave when he was upset that he could not have what he wanted. I had to step over those feelings of inadequacy and know it was okay to just BE where I was.

BEING vs. DOING

On those occasions when I failed at BEING and fell into DOING, I found myself complaining, resentful, and tired. DOING is important; we all need to do our part in supporting the programs our kids benefit from. But we must keep our motivation for DOING in check. When I needed to say “no” but said “yes” because I didn’t want to disappoint people, I was DOING. When I said “yes” because I honestly knew the person needed help, and I was able to meet the call, I was BEING: helpful, freely giving.

So give yourself grace – as a parent, athlete, or wherever life finds you – to be satisfied with your best. BE engaged in what you are doing and know that your best is good enough to the One who counts the most, your Heavenly Father. While DOING can produce resentment if done for the wrong reasons, BEING produces gratitude.

Today, don’t worry about DOING the best or even better than anyone else. Focus on BEING your best. 

 

Your Turn!

How comfortable are you with the idea of BEING your best rather than trying to DO the best?  How are (or aren’t) you modeling this for your child(ren)?

 

UnknownMy bad mom friend and author of today’s Bad Mom Monday challenge  is Tanja Bass.  Tanja lives, works, and parents in Oregon where she has spent all but three years of her life. She has three children — who now must be referred to as “young people” — ages 15,18, and 22.  Tanja enjoys speaking, writing and encouraging others. She could tell you that her journey of life has been one of foster care, adoption & divorce, but she’d far rather tell you how God is changing her story with His redeeming grace!

Bad Mom Monday: Why We Let Our Daughter Touch the Electric Skillet (and other shocking parental choices) 

BMMJuly14
When Annemarie was little, she had no interest in her Playskool kitchen with plastic food. She wanted to help us do the real thing: fix our real breakfast in our real kitchen.

We’d set up the step ladder, and she’d climb up and happily measure ingredients and mix pancake batter.

It was a great arrangement. She was fully engaged in meal preparation, and we felt like such great parents, teaching our little girl life skills at an early age!

Then Annemarie became fascinated by the electric skillet.

We warned her that it was “HOT!” That only peeked her curiosity.

We moved it as far out of reach as possible, but if we turned away for a split second, she’d start to climb the counter, one hand outstretched toward the skillet.

We tried everything we could think of to distract her, forbid her, instill a sense of respect in her.

Nothing worked.

Annemarie’s obsession became an all-out determination to touch the electric skillet.

After many near-misses, we came to the unthinkable conclusion:

Our little girl was going to experience the natural consequences of her curiosity.

The only question was when.

Daniel and I discussed, prayed, and ultimately made one of the hardest choices we’ve ever made as parents:  we decided to let her touch it when we were present.

The next morning, we wiped the skillet clean of oil and turned it to the lowest setting. Daniel stood on one side of the ladder; I stood on the other. At a pre-arranged signal, we both acted distracted.

Sure enough, Annemarie’s tiny hands shot toward the electric skillet. Eagerly, she grabbed its sides.

Her triumphant face registered shock quickly followed by pain. She stumbled and, as Daniel caught her, began to cry.

“Hot!” she wailed, pointing to the skillet with reddening fingers. “Hot!”

I dabbed soothing medication on Annemarie’s hands, and we took turns holding and rocking her until she calmed down. After tucking her in bed for a nap, Daniel and I let down our stoic guards and held each other as we cried.

After that experience, whenever we told her that something was “hot” she repeated “hot!” in a voice of respect and gave it wide berth. And her budding fascination with electric outlets completely vanished.

Letting Annemarie touch the electric skillet worked. But two decades later, I still tear up as I tell this story.

I still feel torn between my desire to protect my child from harm and my responsibility to teach her about consequences.

I also better understand God’s heart toward me: always wanting to protect me but also letting me experience the consequences of my disobedience:

“So, what a blessing when God steps in and corrects you!
Mind you, don’t despise the discipline of Almighty God!
True, he wounds, but he also dresses the wound;
the same hand that hurts you, heals you.”

Job 5:17-18

Your Turn!

What’s a necessary “shocking” parental choice you’ve made or experienced?  What was the motivation behind the choice?  What were the results?

 

Gregory_Cheri_Photo_SquareMy bad mom friend and author of today’s Bad Mom Monday challenge  is Cheri Gregory. Cheri has been married to her college sweetheart for over a quarter-of-a-century and has two college-aged kids; she blogs about expectations, “baditude,” and hope at www.CheriGregory.com.

Bad Mom Monday: Mom Essentials

PoolPartySo we had my son’s birthday party last week on June 30th. The date is only significant because as I was texting people about the party one mom sent a message back with the following question: “Didn’t he turn 7 back in December?”.

Yes, yes he did. (That was for all you Phineas and Ferb fans out there)

I guess I’m “that” mom. The one who had a TERRIBLE year at work. The one who barely had energy to do laundry and cook, much less plan a party.

The one who loves her children more than her job but found her job taking too much of her time, energy and thoughts.

It’s one of those things that I NEVER thought would happen to me, but it did.

It sounds silly to become so upset about being late with a party but it matters to me – or should I say, to my expectations! I’ve always been the mom who plans parties everyone enjoys and (being honest here) raves about! It’s my little “rocked it baby!” moment and I love seeing my kids have such a good time.

Not giving my son a birthday party with his friends brought a weight of guilt and disappointment that was new and very uncomfortable for me, I felt like such a bad mom!

In order to deal with this awful feeling I decided to just stop and remember what matters most.

I decided my son would not be scarred for life and I was NOT a terrible mom. Instead, I was a mom who was human and just trying my best. I stayed focused on the essentials – what I needed to really make it through.

First I had to be HONEST. I had dropped the ball and for that I apologized to my son. I also explained the situation to him and his response was so sweet and understanding. I think it’s okay for my boys to see me goof and claim responsibility while also promising to make things right!

Next I needed the essential of PERSEPCTIVE. Failing to give him a party felt like a BIG deal but when I stepped back and looked at the big picture I realized that I hadn’t totally failed him. I’d been working hard to make sure I was home to tuck him into bed and able to be at all his games and most importantly, turn off my “work brain” and truly listen to him.

When my perspective is focused on the big picture and I’m able to be honest with myself and accept my blunders I think I become a better woman and a better mom. On those “bad mom” days, I have an opportunity to allow God to come in and fill in the missing pieces of my identity with HIS truth. I want to live my life focused on the essentials and not the extras – I want people to come first, not projects and parties.

Keeping this balance is tough, but it’s so worth the effort. And by the way, my little December baby was able to have a pool party. Complete with leis, sunshine and lots of laughter.


 

KaseyKasey Johnson is learning daily how to ignore the extras in life and focus on the essentials. As an educator, author, speaker, blogger, wife and mother, Kasey understands the balancing act we sustain as mothers. Her new book and Bible study, Mom Essentials is all about this challenge that every mom is facing.

Visit her blog, www.smarter-moms.com, to learn more about Mom Essentials.

 

Feeling Perfect? Don’t Sign up for This Launch…

Cure for the Perfect LifeIf you are a woman who is tired of trying harder is getting you nowhere, we ( Cheri Gregory and I) would like to invite you to help us launch our new book!

If you are ready to take a stand against the bullies of Perfectionism, People-Pleasing, Performancism, and Procrastination, and you love to read – this is the launch team for you.

If that sounds like you, come join our Braver Living Rebellion!

Fill out the form HERE

Bad Mom Monday: The Grip of Guilt

The-Grip-of-Guilt

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:5-6

I kinda got thrown into the parenting world head first and torqued a little to the right. Beginning with twins and ending with two out of four children having significant special needs led me being overworked with no break in sight.

I didn’t have time for fun, with the constant nebulizer treatments, doctor appointments, behavior plans to create, and social stories to write. But after 10 years of constant crises and the “work” never done, I finally enrolled in a four hour art class I’d dreamed of taking for years.

On the day of class, my son became sick with asthma. I was torn, wanting to care for him but desperately wanting the class I finally had the chance to attend, and I really needed time doing something fun. I was going to stay, but my husband said to go and he’d take care of Robbie. So, I went.

Well, Stevie’s breathing worsened and he ended up hospitalized before I got home. Guilt grabbed my heart and yelled, “How could you leave your child at a time like this to do something so frivolous? You should have been there! What kind of mom are you?”

As Robbie improved, so did my perception and Guilt released it’s grip.

I realized, as I stayed with him overnight, that God took care of everything; every little detail without my help.

It turned out my husband was able to be the superhero this time, something that he needed. I respected him more for being able to handle the crisis with 4 kids while I was gone.

And, I realized if I don’t take time to have fun, and guard it, then I will never “have” time for fun. Now I try to get out at least twice a month, to do something I want to do.

When worry whispers in my ears about the kids, I remember that God alone is in control. I am not the “only” one that can deal with things.

I also remember that I will be much more capable and creative to care for my family if I take time to care for me.


Merri LewisMerri Lewis is mom to four children, two boys and two girls. They range in age from 11 to 2. Merri enjoys writing during her carved out free time. The rest of the time she enjoys hunting for treasures as she raises her very active children. Merri blogs at www.TreasuresInTheDust.com, with a focus on ministering to families with children on the autism spectrum through the many stories her children provide.

 

 

 

I Need Some Help Here! Final Launch Party Giveaway

BookLaunch-BannerAnd the winner of the Keurig is…

MARCIA!!!


It’s our last giveaway to celebrate the launch of I Need Some Help Here! It has been an amazing launch and I am just so excited about the feedback I’ve been getting from readers from all stages of their mom journey. Thank you so much for your support!

This week we are giving away a new iPod!iPod

This was a review on Amazon about the book that explains one of the reasons I wrote it:

“Seriously, I love this book. Like, love-love and the reason is simple: it’s given me permission to exhale…to breathe again…to relax!

Maybe I should explain.

See, I’m a mom who worries–the type of mom who’s anxious all the time, overwhelmed easily, and slightly frazzled when it comes to the kids I’m raising. I’m also a mom who parents in fear…fear of what my kiddos’ futures might look like, and what my children will turn into. I’m afraid at failing…at getting a big ole “F” in the most important job I’ve been given:motherhood.

“I need Some Help Here,” by Kathi Lipp is just what I needed to silence my doubts and deal with my struggles. Kathi’s encouragement, humor, bad mama moments, stories from the trenches, and prayers, had me laughing (out loud), nodding in agreement, tearing up, and exhaling a huge sigh of relief. She let me know that on this journey, I’m not alone, and for a mama like me, it’s exactly what I needed to hear.”

Parents, exhale today! And if you know someone that could use some encouragement in their parenting journey, please share. And don’t forget to enter to win the last big launch prize!

1. Order a copy of I Need Some Help Here!  for a friend! If she has a Kindle you can buy it on Amazon as a gift that she can download right away. When you order, be sure to download your FREE Surviving Summer eBook . This eBook that will save you in the summer is only available for a limited time so download and share with your friends while there is still time.

 

2. Share it with family, friends, coworkers and followers on social media. Choose the platform of your choice:

Option #1: Post on Facebook: Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Facebook. Click here to share this post on Facebook.

Option #2: Post on Pinterest. Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Pinterest. Click here to repin any of the Pins on my I Need Some Help Here! board.

Option #3: Post on Twitter. Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Twitter. Click here to retweet this tweet on Twitter.

Option #4: Post About the Book on Your Blog When you post about I Need Some Help Here! just send us an email at bronwyn@kathilipp.com with the link to your blog. You’ll then be entered to win one of the weekly prizes!

3. THEN JUST FILL IN THE FORM BELOW TO BE ENTERED FOR THIS WEEK’S PRIZE! You don’t need to do any of the above but we know you’re kind of amazing and will want to give another mom some hope! If the form doesn’t show up, you can use the this version.

Bad Mom Monday: A Teary Drop Off Becomes a Place of Hope

A-Teary-Drop-Off-Becomes-a-Place-of-Hope

I had just dropped off my kids at school and unlike the many moms who were probably cheering right now after a crazy summer break with the kids, I was crying because of what my daughter said before she got out of the car: “I can’t believe you are making me go back to school when all I want to do is be with you.”

I had kept my children home to homeschool the year before and although it was a special year and my children did wonderfully academically, for different reasons, my husband and I were sending them all back to school. It was actually the same school they had all gone to since preschool, so the other students were not strangers. And I would be working at the school, so our whole family (except my husband) would be together at the same school, but my daughter’s anxiety was steeped in a feeling of not wanting to be left out.

The year before we left to homeschool, there were a few girls who had a sleepover and did not invite my daughter. They were supposed to be her good friends. My little girl didn’t even know what a good friend was anymore.

The practical steps in Kathi’s book, I Need Some Help Here!, gives hope for a mama that feels brokenhearted! From teaching kids how not to be a victim to brainstorming what a good friend is to the most important lesson of empowering our kids to pray, Kathi shares in this journey of protecting our little ones.

“The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,
To the one who seeks him. . .”

Lamentations 3:25

My daughter found that God’s promise shared in the book was true. For when she went back to school this year, those girls had matured and they all became my daughter’s best friends. In fact, just last week, we took one of the girls out to dinner and she brought up that situation and said how bad she felt for that. It gave my daughter a chance to see that forgiveness can bring healing and God is the One who fills a heart with hope.

Now my daughter will say that although she loved being homeschooled, she is so happy to have this special year with such good friends before they all go off to high school.

Our lives will never always go according to our plans, so I am thankful for people like Kathi who are willing to share stories of hope and grace so that we know we are not alone in this thing called mothering!


View More: http://kimdeloachphoto.pass.us/allumeheadshotsOur author for today’s Bad Mom Monday post is Angie Ryg. Angie has been described as the “fun sister next door.” And like a real sister, she will make you laugh as well as encourage you to drink deeper from the well of God’s grace. Her book Clutter Free Simplicity encourages women to clear the clutter in their hearts and homes by focusing on what is really important — their daily walk with Jesus. She loves to connect with other women about mothering, marriage, and faith on her blog!  Angie’s most important ministries includes being a wife to her childhood sweetheart and mama to one princess and three princes. They enjoy family movie nights, long road trips, and acting out the TV show Chopped.

Angie writes for Family Matters, Focus on the Family, Whatever Girls, and Raising Generations Today, as well as articles for Lysa Terkeurst and Christianity Today.

 

 

 

I Need Some Help Here! Launch Giveaway Week 3

BookLaunch-Banner SO… with everything going on we sort of skipped a week. Sorry about that! We DO have a winner for Week 2′s giveaway of the Kindle Fire- Glory! Hope you enjoy it Glory!


Time for another giveaway to celebrate the launch of I Need Some Help Here! Did someone say they need a cup of coffee (or three cups, depending on how many times the kids woke you up last night!)? I think it’s time for our Keurig giveaway. Keurig I have heard such hopeful feedback from my readers including this one from a reader from New England:

I just need to share – up until about 2 1/2 years ago, I thought parenting was going really pretty well. My husband and I were successfully raising a wonderful son who, other than talking alot in school, really didn’t give us any trouble. He was smart, athletic, handsome and, mostly, respectful (well, he did talk back a lot). Only child. Then he dropped a bomb on us. He didn’t “believe in God.” Now, his father and I are devout, practicing Catholics. Catholic schools, both of us. The whole nine yards. Our son, went to public schools until 9th grade, when we enrolled him in Catholic high school. Coincidentally (?), that is the year he gave up his belief. When I tell you I struggled, oh you can’t even imagine. I thought I’d never make it through a Mass again without crying. What did we do wrong? Why weren’t my friends having this problem? How can I enjoy my son knowing he’s turned away from something which is at the very core of me? etc. etc. Kathi Lipp, I can’t tell you how much you and this group have helped me. It sounds so cliche, but it really does help to know you’re not alone. It has helped me to be able to turn this one over to God. To keep reminding myself, with your help, that God loves him even more than I do. I pray daily that he’ll find his way back to his faith, but I’ve been able (for the most part) to start trusting that this is a path. Thank you for writing your book.

With this is mind, I would be so grateful if you would share about the book with your friends. Here are some ideas on how: 1. Order a copy of I Need Some Help Here!  for a friend! If she has a Kindle you can buy it on Amazon as a gift that she can download right away. When you order, be sure to download your FREE Surviving Summer eBook . This eBook that will save you in the summer is only available for a limited time so download and share with your friends while there is still time. 2. Share it with family, friends, coworkers and followers on social media. Choose the platform of your choice:

Option #1: Post on Facebook: Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Facebook. Click here to share this post on Facebook.

Option #2: Post on Pinterest. Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Pinterest. Click here to repin any of the Pins on my I Need Some Help Here! board.

Option #3: Post on Twitter. Post about I Need Some Help Here! on Twitter. Click here to retweet this tweet on Twitter.

Option #4: Post About the Book on Your Blog When you post about I Need Some Help Here! just send us an email at bronwyn@kathilipp.com with the link to your blog. You’ll then be entered to win one of the weekly prizes!

3. THEN JUST FILL IN THE FORM BELOW TO BE ENTERED FOR THIS WEEK’S PRIZE! You don’t need to do any of the above but we know you’re kind of amazing and will want to give another mom some hope! If the form doesn’t show up, you can use the this version. Next week is our LAST giveaway so come back to enter again!

The 10 Dangers of Perfection Infection Parenting

10-danger-of-perfection-infection-parenting

 

GIVEAWAY:  Jill has graciously given me 3 copies of her book, No More Perfect Moms, to giveaway to my readers! Please comment below for a chance to win. What’s the antidote you most struggle with in parenting your kids?

In my book No More Perfect Moms, I introduced the concept of the Perfection Infection–the effect on our minds and spirits of the wide-spread, sanitized, airbrushed standards we see every day in the world around us and our deplorable tendency to compare ourselves.

In an effort to fully understand the power of expecting perfection, let’s examine the ten dangers of perfectionism. See if you can read these in two ways: (1) through your own childhood experience, and (2) through the eyes of your children.

1: Children won’t ask for help because they can’t admit they need it

2: Children will resist trying new things.

3: Children who don’t make mistakes won’t develop resiliency.

4: Children will relate to parents from a perspective of fear.

5: Children may develop a negative and critical perspective toward themselves and others

6: Children may expect perfectionism from others even though they don’t like trying to meet the expectation themselves.

7: Children will focus primarily on what they can not do, rather than what they can do.

8: Children expected to be perfect may hesitate to own and believe in their successes because of the stress.

9: Children will not believe in or experience the beauty of unconditional love.

10: Being raised with perfection as a goal can negatively influence children’s spiritual growth and how they relate to the God of the Bible.

The antidotes for the Perfection Infection in parenting are compassion, perception, acceptance, and love.

Compassion
In my parenting life–before I got serious about addressing the Perfection Infection in my own parenting–I was a “buck up” mom. Push through the pain. You’re okay. Don’t dwell on the disappointment; instead look to the future. However, God’s been softening my heart on this. Sometimes I need to just listen to my kids I need to feel their pain without a need to fix it.

Perception
As a parent, you know it’s important to be in tune with your kids. What do they like? What do they dislike? Do they need alone time? Are they creative? Athletic? Musical? What’s important to them?

Perception not only helps us see how a child is wired, but it also helps us connect with how well he is doing emotionally. Kids don’t usually walk up to you and say, “I’m sad today.” Instead, they will lash out at a sibling with words or they will withdraw and be unusually quiet. Perception reads the cues a child is sending.

Acceptance
Every human being has a core need to belong. We want to know that people believe in us, approve of us, and accept us for who we are. We especially long for this from our parents.

In the midst of mistakes, poor choices, or progress, we need to make sure our children know they are still loved and accepted. We want them to know they belong to us no matter what. Acceptance doesn’t only need to happen when mistakes (also known as progress) are made; it also needs to happen when our kids are just plain old different from us.

Love
It’s one of the most overused words in our vocabulary, and it has such a wide spectrum of meaning. Love is a blend of affection, devotion, and loyalty. It is part emotion and part commitment. Real love–unconditional love–is hope blended into the reality of life.

We learn about love from God, whose love is perfection, unconditional, and never-ending:

Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Our imperfect children need to know that our love is never at stake. It protects, trusts, hopes, and perseveres.

Without even realizing it, however, we sometimes parent with this equation: Bad Behavior = Withdrawal of Affection. It’s a natural human response to conflict and frustration, but it’s not a healthy one at all.

When God is the leader of our life, He asks us to deny ourselves and follow Him. That means resisting the way we want to react and instead choosing to respond the way God wants us to respond. There’s a battle that happens inside of us between doing things our way and doing things God’s way. When we let God win that battle, we take another step of maturity in our faith. We also get to experience a sense of joy when we experience the victory of handling things God’s way instead of our own.

 

GIVEAWAY:  Jill has graciously given me 3 copies of her book, No More Perfect Moms, to giveaway to my readers! Please comment below for a chance to win. What’s the antidote you most struggle with in parenting your kids? Winners announced Friday at 8pm PT.


 

20121009-jill0162Jill Savage is an author and speaker who is passionate about encouraging moms. She is the author of seven books including Real Moms…Real Jesus, No More Perfect Moms, and No More Perfect Children. Jill is the founder and CEO of Hearts at Home, an organization that encourages, educates, and equips moms. Jill and her husband, Mark, have five children and make their home in Normal, Illinois. http://www.jillsavage.org and http://www.nomoreperfect.com