Raising the Compassionate Child

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

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About This Episode

Studies on self-esteem have found that increased self-esteem is related to poorer performance on tasks, more relationship problems, more engagement in risky behaviors, and more aggressive and violent behavior. Instead of focusing on self-esteem, as parents we are challenged to raise children who have self-compassion. When children are compassionate with themselves, meaning they are not too hard or negative on themselves for their shortcomings, they will most likely be more compassionate with others as well. If we are defined by what we do or don’t do, then we will always need to climb a ladder that never reaches a final destination. We will always have to work harder and it will never be enough because these efforts will not satisfy our soul or meet the benchmark we’ve created.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Dave Griffin
Special Guest

This Week's Action

  • Take some time to learn about compassion and what it really means. Check out the Compassionate Program for more information.

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Prisoners in Plain Sight – Human Trafficking

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

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About This Episode

How does being part of a healthy family help safeguard children from the threat of human trafficking?

According to the International Labor Organization, there are approximately 21 million victims of human trafficking worldwide. Predators frequently use social media to lure vulnerable minors into a life subjugation, often for use as sex slaves or forced laborers. The grooming process involves preying upon the child’s insecurities and familial dysfunction to lull him or her into a false sense of security. The predator affirms the child and will often pose as a boyfriend or girlfriend before taking steps to isolate the victim from his or her family and coerce them into forced servitude. Parents should be mindful of the risk factors that make children more susceptible to predation and take strides to address any concerns. Children are most vulnerable to victimization when they feel their emotional needs are not being met at home, during periods of transition, and after experiencing any kind of traumatic or extraordinarily stressful event. The best way to prevent your child from being victimized is to give your child the love and affection that they crave and to have earnest, age appropriate conversations with them about internet safety. Monitoring your child’s activities and keeping tabs on who they are spending time with is another great way to help keep your child safe.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Kathleen Winn

Kathleen Winn
Special Guest

This Week's Action

This week, take some practical steps toward safeguarding your family against human trafficking.  Here are a few ideas:

  • If your child is old enough to understand “the facts of life,” make sure you’re the first voice they hear on this topic. Be proactive in instilling a strong sexual ethic in your children as well as an understanding of what healthy relationships look like.
  • Talk to your children about internet safety and monitor their behavior online. Make sure that they know that not everyone they meet online is safe to talk to and that they should never agree to meet up with someone they only know from the internet.
  • Invite your children’s friends over to your house. Not only is this loads of fun for them, it allows them to interact in a safe environment and gives you the opportunity to get to know who your child is spending time with.
  • Allow your children to interrupt you, even if it’s only for a few minutes. It seems small, but taking advantage of those little moments throughout the day to bond with your child communicates to them, perhaps more than words ever could, that they are valuable and loved. This is your first line of defense against potential predators because, remember, children seek love and affirmation wherever they can find it. Make sure they know; they’ve already found it in you.

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Let Go and Let God

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About This Episode

What is the consequence to children when parents overprotect them or take over their responsibilities?

Parents today are often criticized for raising a generation of children who struggle to do things on their own, who return home from college incapable of earning a living or making decisions. The trouble with hovering excessively over children is that it stifles their potential for growing into confident adults who can step out into an unknown world and face the consequences of their decisions responsibly.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Vincent Lambert

Vincent Lambert
Special Guest

LaTonia Lambert

LaTonia Lambert
Special Guest

This Week's Action

  • This week think about things you may be doing for your kids that they can do themselves.
  • Do you find yourself cleaning up their room for them, doing their laundry (when they are old enough to do this for them), cleaning up/and or taking over their science project?
  • Instead of “Stepping-in” for your kids this week, take on an attitude of a coach or teacher instead. As a coach you’re helping your child learn a skill that they take with them for life.

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Family Bridges:

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The Struggle is Real:

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Love or Fear: Raising confident children

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How did your parents pass down their faith to you?

When nurturing your child’s spiritual growth, be mindful to not fall into a rigid trap where religion is shoved down their throats like a pill they need to swallow. Instead, live a life of faith and practice the spiritual disciplines. Your children will be attracted to come to the faith when they see you enjoying prayer and scripture meditation as part of your daily routine.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Eduardo Morales

Eduardo Morales
Special Guest

This Week's Action

  • Take the natural day-to-day occurrences as an opportunity to discuss spiritual matters and invite your kids to weekly or daily family devotional time where they can learn to appreciate what it means to be in a relationship with God.
  • Take out your calendar and find a time every week to have a family devotional. You can print the family based devotional on the Beatitudes created by the American Bible Society by clicking here.

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Family Bridges:

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The Struggle is Real:

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Stay Humble: Sometimes you need to ask your kids for forgiveness

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

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Stay Humble: Sometimes you need to ask your kids for forgiveness

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About This Episode

Parenting can be a humbling experience in many respects. At times, you may lash out at your children when they frustrate your goals. When this happens, and you seek forgiveness from your children, this exercise in humility is a growing experience for you and for them. Stay humble and admit when you are wrong.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Raquel Toledo

Raquel Toledo
Special Guest

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Family Bridges:

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The Defiant Child

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About This Episode

Children have different temperaments. And their temperaments influence how their parents respond to them. A child with an easy temperament who is complacent by nature will receive more praise from their parents, teachers and caregivers. A child who has difficult temperament and who needs repeated redirection and discipline can wear down those who take care of them.

Provide a bigger picture of why you’re asking your children to behave a specific way. The because “I said so” framework for defiant children frequently leads to more defiance. Seek to appeal to their internal motivation (see the hamburger podcast and app program) for tips on how to appeal to children’s motivation. Resist trying to change your child into someone he or she is not. Resist comparing your children to others. Make sure you have some self-care as a parent so you can have the energy required to address the problems that come your way.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Jeff Wright

Jeff Wright
Special Guest

This Week's Action

Set up healthy boundaries at home and consistently apply them. Children (and adults) are creatures of habit. If you repeatedly have a rhythm of activities in your home that include chores, personal hygiene and house rules, it becomes a routine and is less taxing for a parent to enforce them.

  • Start with one routine you can work on boundaries around (i.e., morning, afternoon, evening). Identify one repeated problem behavior you’d like to work on as a family.
  • Explain what you would like to see different (be as specific as possible) and why. Example: “I am concerned how grouchy you are in the morning, and I suspect it’s because how late you are going to bed. A good night sleep is really important for your well-being and our family’s well-being because as you are less grouchy – we are all happier.”
  • Invite them/your children to consider a solution to the problem. Example: “What do you think of starting by working on going to bed an hour earlier?”
  • Explore what barriers or obstacles can prevent them from this strategy working. Example: “What do you think makes it a challenge to go to bed at X hour?”
  • Brainstorm solutions together to address the barriers. Example: “What are some things that you can do be ready on time for bed? How can we(I) support you?”
  • Celebrate the success. Example: “I noticed how much more relaxed and more content you look this morning than previous mornings. I appreciate that you are working on going to bed on time – it makes a real difference.” Make adjustments as is needed.

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Family Bridges:

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The Struggle is Real:

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Father’s Day Special

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

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About This Episode

Everyone has been influenced by their fathers – and whether our experience was happy, painful, or tragic, we can’t deny the impact that they have had on our lives. Our guests for this special discuss memories they have with their fathers, lessons that they learned, and what their relationship with their father is like today. Tune into this week’s podcast to hear about we have learned from our dads and the importance of fatherhood.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Bill Ferrell

Bill Ferrell
Special Guest

Eduardo Morales

Eddie Morales
Special Guest

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Family Bridges:

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The Struggle is Real:

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Self-Love vs. Self-Hatred: Helping kids find joy and contentment

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

Podcast

Self-Love vs. Self-Hatred: Helping kids find joy and contentment

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About This Episode

What does it take to raise children who are compassionate, purposeful, mindful, care for others, embrace opportunities and grow and learn from all the rich experiences that relationships and life bring? They need to feel comfortable in their own skin. If they are plagued by self-loathing, beating themselves when things go south, they won’t have the energy to serve others. On the other hand, if they are overly focused on vanity and self-pride, they similarly won’t give the time of day to care for others. The key is having a sense of grace that they gift to themselves and to others. Grace is something they will gain from how their parents model self-love and acceptance. Moreover, exposing children to stories of people who have lived a meaningful life representing different sectors (i.e, philanthropy, scientists, social services) is one way to pull them away from their inclination to only focus on themselves. As they learn about the plight of others and how every person can make a difference, their perspective can shift and become more balanced.

People On This Episode

Alicia La Hoz

Dr. Alicia La Hoz
Resident Expert

Omar Ramos

Omar Ramos
Host

Family Bridges

Veronica Avila
Host

Charles Woehr

Dr. Charles Woehr
Special Guest

This Week's Action

  • Investigate local charities and find out how you can volunteer as a family.
  • Go to your local library and check out biographical books on inspirational leaders who have been social service pioneers, philanthropists or who have sacrificially given of themselves. The Who Was Series of books is a good one for grade school children.
  • Family Movie Night: Watch a movie that speaks to a heroic figure who overcame insurmountable odds and ultimately served others. After the movie, talk about what it would mean to go beyond the self and serve others.

More Resources

Family Bridges:

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The Struggle is Real:

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Learn how to turn the struggle into a success.