Discussion Questions: Chapter Ten

“Your Most Important Relationship”

You can’t take care of your kids if you’re not taking care of yourself. This chapter gives insights about self-understanding.

“…Any woman who did something to take care of herself was put down in her family’s hardworking immigrant culture for being ‘selfish.'” (p. 164)

Q: Does this sound familiar to you? Do you think it is true? How do you take care of yourself? How do you justify taking care of yourself?

“Nothing has a stronger influence on children than the un-lived lives of their parents.'” (p. 164)

Q: Do you have an “unlived life?” What are your unexpressed dreams and desires? Speaking these thoughts aloud helps you connect with your authentic self, model this to your children, and best of all, begin to transform these dreams into reality.

“If you were disrespected and rejected, blamed and shamed, put down and humiliated as a child, you may be recycling those cruel messages in your self-talk.'” (p. 166)

Q: Do you have an “inner bully?” How are you learning to stand up to or weaken that voice?

“Being authentic is paramount for good mental health and healthy relationships. Unfortunately, our culture tends to heartlessly thrust people in the opposite direction, demanding that they be artificial and untrue to themselves, even put themselves at risk to fit in or ‘succeed.'” (p. 169)

Q: How have you been personally ‘thrust in the opposite direction’? Have you seen this happen to your children?

“What is ‘Locus of Control’ and why does it matter?” (p. 170)

Q: This is an illustration Kristen made for Louise’s workshops, also published in The Winning Family. Who is pulling YOUR strings?

© 1993 Kristen Baumgardner Caven

© 1993 Kristen Baumgardner Caven

“Many forces keep us from understanding and becoming who we really are, or from grasping what is most important in life.'” (p. 173)

Q: Look over the sub-headings on pages 173-177. What traps do you fall into? What traps do you see family members falling into?

“Creating an authentic relationship with yourself is an act of healing.'” (p. 177)

Q: Look over the Avenues to Healing starting on page 177. Which ones have you used? Which ones might you be interested in checking out? What other avenues can you share with other parents?

And now for our favorite question:

Q: What sentence, paragraph, or idea popped out at you, or stuck with you after reading?

HOMEWORK: There are three activities on page 167 that you can do to lift your self-esteem. Choose one or more, and try them this week!

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