Ep. 102- The Power of Courage in Positive Parenting

by | October 19, 2021

Ep. 102- The Power of Courage in Positive Parenting

by | October 19, 2021

The Fresh Start Family Show
The Fresh Start Family Show
Ep. 102- The Power of Courage in Positive Parenting
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LISTEN & SUBSCRIBE

Join Wendy today as she shares the transformative shift she had in her parenting once she decided to take the courageous step into new and beautiful ways of parenting & living life. 

Today she utilizes her own family stories and parenting journey to talk about stepping beyond the feelings of fear and utilizing courage as our greatest parenting superpower. 

Today you will walk away from this episode learning:

  1. Ways to see all of the basic emotions as positive … Including fear, anger, hurt and sadness (not just happy!) 
  2. How to utilize courage as your greatest power in your parenting journey. 
  3. What to do when you feel afraid when implementing positive parenting in your home. 

Mama, are you are sick and tired of relying on hand-me-down parenting tactics like spanking, threatening, intimidating, and using harsh punishments that create a total relationship strain (and aren’t effective at all!!)
Join me on October 28th for a free one hour live workshop where you’ll learn three steps to building up a firm and kind compassionate toolkit that works with kids of all ages.

I cannot wait to support you at class on October 28th!


Episode Highlights:

  • Feeling afraid in your parenting journey
  • Wendy’s journey to discovering & implementing positive parenting
  • The 5 basic emotions.. Happy, Sad, Angry, Scared, Hurt
  • Seeing fear as a positive emotion
  • How to step into learning even when you are scared of personal development work

Resources Mentioned:

Download my FREE Discipline Guide and Worksheet HERE!

Sign up for the for the Freedom to Be Course waitlist



Not able to listen or want to read along with us?

Here is the episode transcript!

Wendy Snyder:
This episode is brought to you by the free, Fresh Start Family Firm and Kind, Compassionate Discipline Learning Guide and Worksheet. You can grab your copy at FreshStartFamilyonline.com/Disciplineguide.

Wendy Snyder: Well, Hey listeners, I’m excited you’re here for a new episode before we get going. I wanted to let you know that if you want to learn more about the program that you’re going to hear me speak a lot about today, which is our newest offering here at Fresh Start Family. It’s called the freedom to be personal development course. We have a weightless going for families who are interested in joining us for one of our next sessions.

Wendy Snyder:
And you can head on over to FreshStartFamilyonline.com/Freedomcourse, to learn more, put your name on the wait list, even if you’re interested in slightly and even slightly in learning more about what this program offers, what the cost associated, when the dates are going to be that we offer it next, go ahead and just drop your name into the wait list and I’ll be in touch to make sure I give you all of that information. And then most importantly, let you know, as soon as doors open for the next session. So just wanted to make sure you have that information and without further ado, enjoy this episode.

Stella Snyder:
Well, Hey there, I’m Stella. Welcome to my mom and dad’s podcast. The Fresh Start Family Show. We’re so happy. You’re here. We’re inspired by the ocean Jesus and rock and roll and believe deeply in the true power of loving kindness together. We hope to inspire you to expand your heart, learn new tools and strengthen your family. Enjoy the show.

Wendy Snyder:
Well, hello there listeners. Welcome to a new episode of the Fresh Start Family Show. I am your host, Wendy Snyder, positive parenting educator and family life coach. And I am so happy that you are here. I do have a little cold today, so you can probably hear it in my voice. I’ve got cool, like scratchy voice, which is different for me, but I’ve got my hot tea and I’m excited to hang out with you guys for the next half hour or so, because today I want to talk to you about The Power of Courage in all of life, really, but especially in positive parenting. And the reason why I wanted to hop on and record this today is because I’m just coming off teaching 19 students over the last two weekends, I took these students through a personal development program that we’ve just launched here at Fresh Start Family called the freedom to be Course.

Wendy Snyder:
And let me tell you guys, I was nervous about this one. I’ve been preparing to teach this as a life coach. I’ve been training and building this program, and I’m just envisioning what this would look like for my students for almost four years. Now, this was a really training program to become a life coach of this capacity and to be able to walk families and parents through this type of deep personal development and to be able to do it online also was just like an extra added degree of difficulty and long story short. Not only was it an, you know, a good course, we got through it. We walked 19 students from all over the world through this program, but it was absolutely fantastic.

Wendy Snyder:
And so I’m just kind of ending the last two Saturdays heading into this week, just feeling so inspired by myself and realizing just how much courage plays into feeling confident and successful in our lives because Courage is what happens on the other side of feeling scared. So I want to talk to you today about that feeling of feeling scared and how a lot of times in life, we will do anything to avoid it, which causes us to not go for what we want sometimes. And I think the shows up so much in Parenting, especially because if you start learning and really diving into positive parenting and learning the strategies and applying them and using them in your home, especially when it comes to compare Compassionate discipline, you are going to probably be very different than a lot of your friends and neighbors and you know, people at church or whatever, it may be, your colleagues, all those things.

Wendy Snyder:
And it takes courage and bravery to kind of step into that and keep learning and keep applying and keep living this life of positive parenting. So what do we do with that, that feeling of being scared and, and how do we get to that other side of feeling courageous and brave? Because let me tell ya, it feels like a million bucks when you’re on the other side of that. So we’re going to talk about the five emotions here in a second, the five basic emotions I like to teach here at Fresh Start Family. But again, let me just tell you, like, as we were preparing for this, for this personal development course that I taught it, I was terrified the, especially the three days leading up to our first day, we started on October 9th.

Wendy Snyder:
It was a two day course, October 9th and October 16th. And even though I had prepared hours upon hours, I mean, I’ve been in the course room preparing for this hundreds of hours. And I still felt scared. Like, what if I mess this up? What if I say the wrong thing? What if technology doesn’t go our way? What if this doesn’t work out? Like I had hoped it was, and somebody doesn’t have a great experience. Like there was just all of these emotions spinning through me and it definitely kind of, you know, got to a heightened, heightened place. So the last three days, especially before the first course, the first weekend that I taught and then the second weekend, it kind of flared up a little bit on Friday.

Wendy Snyder:
And that, by the time I was finished, I just felt like I had climbed a mountain. And I was sitting at the top, looking at this beautiful ocean view or, you know, was able to see across the horizon, like millions of miles away. I just felt like a million bucks. And I want you to be able to lean into and get to that point too, in many points of your life, but especially your parenting. But let’s start off by talking about the emotions and how feeling scared is a God-given healthy emotion that I want you to remember is just part of life. So let’s talk about all the emotions. So I know many of us were raised, you know, with joy or happiness being the only okay emotion.

Wendy Snyder:
And it’s actually just not the way life is. We here at Fresh Start Family teach that happiness is one of the emotions, but sadness and anger and hurt and scared are equally just part of the wholeness of life. So if you are a human being, you are going to have just as many are probably more times in your life when you’re going to feel scared, hurt, angry, or sad as you are when you’re going to be happy. So happy is really not the goal. The goal, I believe in my opinion, is to be able to experience those other emotions without it taking you down or, or destroying your day or making you feel like something’s wrong with you or your family, when you have those emotions or something’s wrong with your marriage, or something’s wrong with yourself, like it’s just part of life.

Wendy Snyder:
And when you learn how to have emotional literacy, when you learn what to do with those emotions and why every single one of them is good, life just becomes a whole lot easier, especially as a parent. So for example, when it comes to sadness, sadness is an emotion that shows how much you care. So I recently felt this emotion when my son broke his wrist skateboarding probably about a week and a half ago. And it was sad for sure that he broke his wrist, but it was especially sad because we are just about to go to Hawaii for a Fresh Start, family planning retreat, and why we’re there. We’re also going to be renewing our 20th wedding anniversary.

Wendy Snyder:
Vowels. Can you believe that guys I’ve been married to the love of my life? Terry Snyder, you guys have heard him on plenty of our episodes here at Fresh Start Family. He is my treasured cohost on the show and he’s just my best friend and my, my partner in crime in life. But yeah, we’ve been married 20 years. So we are going to be renewing our vows on the beaches of Hanalei Kauai. And we leave in just a few days. So once we got him to the doctors and we realized not only was it broken but fractured, but he was going to have to have a cast. He had been so strong about it, but then he just kind of broke down and was so sad that he was going to be able to serve because he had been dreaming of surfing for the last like six months in Hawaii.

Wendy Snyder:
Ever since we had said we were going, he had watched the Olympics, he had been watching surf shows and competitions lately, and just was so excited in his words to really like conquer his short boarding skills. And when he found out he couldn’t surf there, it just crushed him. So that watching your kid be sad is heartbreaking. Right? But the reason why we get sad is because we care so much about these little turkeys. Like we just love them so much. So watching them be sad or watching them be disappointed or whatever it is is just a sadness that kind of hurts your heart, right? But again, it’s such a good emotion cause it helps you remember how much you care.

Wendy Snyder:
Anger is an awesome emotion because it shines a spotlight on what needs to change. And it often will engage our inner strength. If you are mature in knowing what to do with that emotion. Now, a lot of people aren’t because we were never taught what to do with the emotion of anger. So, you know, again, that’s one of the biggest things I teach here. Of course we teach tons of parenting, but we also teach tons of life coaching, which is what do you do when you feel so angry at your kids that you feel like fire is coming out of your head? So the good news about anger is that when you handle it in a healthy, mature way, when you feel it, when you process it and when you express it, when, when appropriate, it’s not always appropriate or necessary to express anger.

Wendy Snyder:
But this is often where strong boundaries are set, where from Kind strong boundaries are set. So anger is a good, healthy emotion. Hurt is another one. It’s another one that like, we just want to avoid because as we were growing up, a lot of us heard the messages of like, get up. You’re fine. You know, you’re fine. You’re not even bleeding get up. So it’s like, we don’t want to be hurt. We’re taught that. It’s like, it’s almost weak to feel hurt. Right? But honestly, going through life, like not only are you going to be hurt physically a lot in life, you’re also going to be hurt emotionally, if you are putting yourself out there.

Wendy Snyder:
Right? So the thing about hurt is that it shows the tenderness of an open heart. And if you are living life with an open heart, there are just going to be situations where you are hurt. And again, it’s just one of those things that shows how much you care. So if you put yourself out there in a love relationship and you fall in love, there’s a chance that person may not love you back or break your heart. One day. There’s a chance that if you put yourself out there and love on your kids, there is going to be a day where they might say something that is totally hurtful. It’s just part of being a human being. So hurt is another healthy human emotion. And then scared is the last one. That again, I’m going to talk to you a lot about today is always the per prerequisite of bravery.

Wendy Snyder:
So in order to feel brave in order to be courageous, you have to feel scared. First. There just is no bravery and courage without feeling afraid first. So what I teach my children is how to recognize and feel scared, feel afraid, and then do it anyways. That’s the ticket to getting to the bravery and the courage. And that’s why I’m celebrating so much today is because I was terrified as even over the last four years, as I was training to teach this type of deep personal development coursework, I was scared many, many, many of the steps that it took to get there.

Wendy Snyder:
You know, positive parenting was the same. I remember, you know, say, I think it was seven years ago. Now that I became an educator, a positive parenting. And for years, I was like, who am I? Who am I to teach positive parenting? I’m a mess. I’m like the most imperfect mother on the planet. I talk so freely and openly with you guys about the mistakes that I’ve made. And the times when I do things that are not integrity in integrity with my values and the way I want to act. But I always remember that that’s what makes me actually a great educator, but it took years to understand that and believe in myself. And I was terrified for years and, and instead of giving up or instead of not doing it, I courageously went forward and did it scared.

Wendy Snyder:
And that’s how I built this company. That’s how we are, where we are today, where we’ve helped thousands and thousands and thousands of parents and painful generational cycles learn a new way, be able to teach their kids important life lessons, with connection and from kindness. And it just feels really, really good. So scared is an awesome emotion. You guys, I also, during this weekend, I call it a weekend course because usually we do it on a Saturday and Sunday, but because I did it in an online format and we were able to help families all over the world, we decided to do it in two Saturdays. But all these 19 students that went through this program with me, many of them definitely came in feeling scared.

Wendy Snyder:
If you’ve never done a personal development course like this, of course, you’re going to be scared coming in. Like, what’s going to be asked of you or are you going to have to share something that you don’t want to share? Are you going to have feelings that come up or whatever you’re going to be looked, you know, asked to look at past traumas, whatever it may be like, everyone is scared before they come in. It’s kind of the fear of the unknown, right? And these 19 students said, yes, signed up and showed up and just killed it. They like, they not only showed up and did the course, but they did it with this, oh, these open hearts and just such massive amounts of bravery and vulnerability and tenderness and just Courage.

Wendy Snyder:
And it just was so awesome. But I thought I would read you one success story that really moved me because it mimicked the experience. I had a decade ago when I went through this program myself. So when I went through freedom to be, for the first time I had a three-year-old little girl, Stella was three at the time. She’s almost 14 now. And I had this experience, that positive parenting. I had learned a lot, but I wasn’t able to like actually effortlessly change some habitual things I was doing as a parent until I went through this course. But after the course, I had this experience. I tell the story a lot. If you’ve never heard it, it’s basically, you know, Stella was throwing a fit one day as I was nursing the babies right about one Terrin was one and Stella was three at the time.

Wendy Snyder:
And I was nursing nursing, the baby. And still I came over and she wanted like this, this nursing stool that I had. And I was like, no, you can’t have the nursing stole. Like I need to have my feet up and be properly ergonomic to like, in order to feel comfortable, nursing Terrin. And she just started throwing a fit. And I had struggled so much with reactivity in the past and I wanted to stay calm. I wanted to be able to have empathy for her and like, stay like, keep a firm limit, but not do it with like intense fear or force or intimidation or like snapping to threats. Like I was trying really hard, but I kept going back to my teacher and saying like, I can’t, I can’t do this.

Wendy Snyder:
Or my child’s too crazy or whatever. And she just would always look at me and say, Wendy got to get to freedom to be, and I was scared, but I said, yes. And I went, so this one day she still starts throwing a fit over the nursing stool. And instead of freaking out, like I normally would have in the past, like, and like just, I usually, this is what would happen. I would usually keep my cool for awhile and then it wouldn’t work. And then it came to the point where I would just blow up and either like threaten her or lock her in her room or force her into timeout or like threatened to spank or whatever it was. And it just always felt like crap. So, but on this day I stood up and I was like, Hey, it looks like you’re having a really hard time right now.

Wendy Snyder:
So I’m going to go into the bedroom with the baby and take a calming break and I’ll see you in a minute. And she just flipped out and she was like pounding on the door and freaking out. And it was the first time I had ever really been able to like, actually organically stay calm without feeling like I was like white knuckling. The experience. Does that make sense? So it’s like in the past, I was like, Wendy’s stay calm. You can do this. You have to do this. You have to stop reacting. If you ever want her to learn, like all these, it was just intense. And on this day I was like, oh my gosh, I am just naturally going to walk into the bedroom, close the door, let her calm down. I’m going to finish nursing the baby.

Wendy Snyder:
And then we’ll all handle it. And I was just so confident and calm. And finally it felt like forever, but probably 10 minutes later, she stopped freaking out and she sat down and I could just hear her kind of sniffling and crying. And, and I was to the point where I was like, okay, I feel like I’m, I’ve calmed down too. And I’m able to, to, to talk to her. And I came out and I was like, Steli, what’s going on baby? And she was just like, I’m so mad. And I was like, I know I’m like, I know you’re mad, but, but why are you so mad thinking to myself, like, it’s just a nursing stole. Like, why are you flipping out? And, and she, but again, I was very calm and like feeling connected with her.

Wendy Snyder:
And she was like, because I’m so mad. And finally, like finally I was able to actually hear my child that day because what I finally freaking heard her saying to me, which it like for eight months before that I had never, ever seen this in my child. But for the first time I finally heard her say that day, mama, I am so mad that I get so mad and I don’t know what to do about this. Like, I can’t stop. Like all I, I freak out and I don’t want to freak out. And of course she didn’t say all these words, you guys, but I finally was able to look at my three-year-old and see, she’s not trying to just be a pain in the ass she’s hurting.

Wendy Snyder:
She does not know why she can’t have the self control and she wants it so bad. She doesn’t want to freak out over a nursing stool and not getting her way, but she’s stuck and she feels alone and she feels like she can’t do it. And she feels angry about that. And in that moment, it was finally like, oh my gosh, I am in the exact same position, honey. Like, we’re in the exact same place right now. And I get you because I get so angry too. And I don’t know why, but I do know that what I learned this weekend helped me big time and that you’re not alone and that we’re going to figure this out and that I’m here for you no matter what. And I swear to you guys, it was from that moment on that everything changed in our parent, like in our relationship.

Wendy Snyder:
And finally I was able to like, do some of the strategies that I had learned when it comes to Compassionate discipline responsive versus reactive Parenting or all the things that just finally naturally started to come to me. And, and it was just a pivotal moment where I hugged her so tight and she was sobbing and I was sobbing and I was just like, we’re going to be okay. We’re going to be okay. Well, Hey there families, I’m pausing this episode for a quick minute to ask you if you would be interested in learning more about how to design healthy, effective Firm and Kind logical consequences when your kids misbehave or make mistakes.

Wendy Snyder:
Awesome. I see. So many of you nodding your heads. Yes, yes, yes. Cool. Well, you’re in luck because I’ve designed a free learning guide, how to do exactly that you can head to FreshStartFamilyonline.com/Disciplineguide to grab your free download now. So the student of mine that wrote in a success story on Sunday after our, We are Course had finished. She wrote in and said this weekend, my son had an epic meltdown because I told him we had run out of time to listen to a short podcast before bed.

Wendy Snyder:
And let me tell you that this student had, has been with me for a while and my support community, that bonfire she’s a student of the foundations course or graduate. And she mimicked my story. She just still had been having trouble like actually responding versus reacting and found herself still, just so reactive with her kids. And it got to the point where she was just like, Wendy, I am just struggling here. And I said, you just kind of come to class, come to freedom to be. And she did thank goodness. But then she went on to say, just before that, I started to get in a conflict with him over having too many stuffies on his bed. He sleeps pretty terrible, wakes up in the night and wakes early he’s eight.

Wendy Snyder:
So I was digging my heels in on how they would affect his sleep more. But I decided to let it go because it was late. But then that got him frustrated with me. So the success is that I stayed calm when he lost it over the podcast. Disappointment. I knew he was exhausted, but sorry. I knew he was exhausted. He hit me with this stuffy and I wanted to yell. I wanted to force him back to bed, but I didn’t. I walked away in the room and then I came back. I give him empathy saying, I know he was disappointed. I asked if you wanted to hug.

Wendy Snyder:
And then I laid by him and rubbed his back. I whispered to him how there was nothing he could do that would change my love for him. I told him he was safe with me. I said, I would always be there and how he was such a good son. And she said, I haven’t, I didn’t do this all weekend, but I am trying. And I am learning. And this was her first success post in eight months. So this was just an example to show you that this bravery and courage, this mom had to show up to learning from every step of her journey, from joining the foundations course, to joining the bonfire support program, to saying yes to the freedom, to be personal development weekend, to then having the courage to actually go through the program.

Wendy Snyder:
And on the other side, have this new found, calm that she had never been able to access before, just lit me up. And I thought it would be awesome to share with you guys. So congratulations to that amazing mama who just got to experience what it feels like to be able to stay deeply connected to your kid, but also set a very firm boundary of like, no, we’re not gonna, we’re not going to do this. It’s time for bed and be able to, to, to endure a child freaking out or having a meltdown or making a mistake or being imperfect or being a total mess and returning unconditional love and calm and compassion and empathy. It just feels like a million bucks. And for some people it takes a little bit longer to get there.

Wendy Snyder:
Again, it took, it’s funny because I think it took me about eight months and it, and it’s similar. I think this, this sweet mama of mine has been in my program for about eight months. So anyways, let’s get back to talking about courage and how in positive parenting. This really will be something that you want to lean into a lot. And remember on the first side of that is the feeling of being scared. So I’m going to tell you a few stories here. It’ll just kind of give you an example of how in my own parenting walk, there have been many situations where I was afraid. I Terry, and I both thinking, oh my gosh, are we doing the right thing?

Wendy Snyder:
Like culture or the school system or my friends that I call or my, even at times a pastor or a trusted mentor at church, tell me to do the opposite, but my heart and positive parenting. And what I hear when I pray is telling me to do something else. And that can feel so scary at times because you can feel like you’re an outcast. You can feel like no one gets you and you can just be really scared that it’s not going to work. Right. And so here’s some stories to give you an example of how good it feels to do it anyways, to do it scared. And on the other side is such a feeling of bravery and courage.

Wendy Snyder:
So the first example that I’m going to give you is really the way that we’ve done a lot with Stella over the years to teach her intrinsic self control versus control heart. Now you’ve heard me talk about Stella a lot. Stella is my power kiddo. She’s very, strong-willed has been since birth and there’s just been a lot. We’ve had to adapt over the years to pull back on any type of pressure control based strategies, because she just does not respond to them. She digs in her heels, she pushes back even harder and she resist whatever you’re trying to get her to do. And this was really, really intense when she was a toddler.

Wendy Snyder:
So from the ages of like three to seven, holy smokes, woo. It was just a wild ride, but thank God we had good mentors. And we learned how to embrace empowerment and teaching methods that were based on again, teaching herself control versus trying to control her. Cause we always asked parents, do you want to, to control your child or teach them to control themselves? And with, with strong-willed kids, especially it’s even more important because like I said, they will resist if you try to control them. So the first example I can give you is when she was in kindergarten, we started getting messages that she needed.

Wendy Snyder:
She was falling behind in reading and she needed to do more homework at night and she needed to do more flashcards. But since she was in preschool through kindergarten, homework was just a nightmare with her. It was like, you know, she’d come home from school. And she was already pretty grouchy after school. Anyways. I mean, raise your hand if you have a kindergarten or first grader like this, where I think they’re just so exhausted, but they’re just grouchy. They need. In, in my opinion, what I learned is that they need to be intrigued and need to have healthy meals. They need to have early bedtimes. They need to be connecting with you as the most important thing. They do not need more homework.

Wendy Snyder:
Now, thank God we watched the documentary race to nowhere. It is one that I recommend for every single family across the planet. You should be able to find it really easily on prime or Netflix, but it’s called race to nowhere. And it just fills you with confidence about how to not buy into kind of the classic school system of standardized testing and homework, like especially homework for young kids, because studies have shown that it is absolutely not beneficial till they get to, like, I forget if it’s fifth or sixth grade, but homework for kindergartners and first graders. And second graders is often just something that adds stress and disconnection to family lives. So we watched this documentary and we were like, oh, okay, I see what’s going on here.

Wendy Snyder:
We are absolutely going to take that angle and not force this kid to do homework, but you could tell her teacher at the time was very uncomfortable with that. So we had told her, Hey, we’re going to support, you know, Stella through reading every night. And when she brings home a homework pack, we’re going to try our best to do it. And if it turns into a nightmare and tears, we’re like, we’re not going to finish the packet, but we promise you, we will always try our best. We’ll try to get started and just know that sometimes we may turn in like an unfinished packet and we took the same, same thing with like the flashcards. I forget what sight words we were like. Okay, cool. We’ll try it. And if it turns into a nightmare, then we are just confident in, in reading and what she’s learning with you in class.

Wendy Snyder:
And you could tell her teacher was uncomfortable with that. At one point, they called us into the classroom and they were like, okay, Stella, you know, you, we need to have a meeting because Stella is in the 67th percentile of reading. And this is a problem. If she falls behind even more than this is like, this is a big deal. So I’ll never forget. We showed up to this meeting and the teacher had brought the principal in too. And we were like, wow, they’re like really stressed out about this. And because we had watched the documentary, we’re like, we’re not stressed out about it. We’re we’re okay. And, but you could tell it was like, it was very counter-cultural for us to be brave, even though we were scared because I remember telling Terry, oh my gosh, I hope this works out.

Wendy Snyder:
Because if this doesn’t work out the idea of not forcing homework and not forcing that type of stuff, like if it doesn’t work out, this is going to be bad. And, but we just went for it. And over the years we kept that same, that same approach. And really honestly, now she’s in eighth grade. And the only thing we are very, very firm about when it comes to homework is that we limit it. We will not let her do homework. Usually past 8:00 PM. We won’t for sure. Won’t let her to be on a device past 8:00 PM. But we are like, that’s the only firm limit we have is like that we, we limit it. So does that make sense? Like we have not ever forced this child to do her homework and if she doesn’t get it done, then she experiences a natural consequence in the classroom with the teacher and she hates it.

Wendy Snyder:
Like she is so competitive and she’s such like she’s been mentored on how to have intrinsic self control. So she just, she knocks it out of the park on her own. She doesn’t need us to do anything. So I believe it was because of those early years that we didn’t make it an argument that she developed the, the love of school and reading and math and all these things, because she was able to actually enjoy being a kid in the evening. But that was just one of the things. But long story short is she ended up by the time first grade came, she ended up excelling and reading. And now, you know, first grade on, she became one of the top readers and was like two grade levels above her, her normal reading.

Wendy Snyder:
So it just goes to show you, but that was, that was a situation where it took bravery and courage for us to be countercultural because the teacher and the principal, and, you know, they really wanted us to make sure she did 30 minutes of flashcards at night. They wanted us to make sure that she did a hundred percent of her packet or she was going to fall behind. They wanted us to make sure we got extra tutoring afterschool instead of putting her in trees and on playgrounds and getting her healthy meals and putting her in a bed early. They wanted us to invest in a tutor to make her do more reading. And we just did not take the approach. So, but then on the other side of that now is again, seeing Stella be able to be the student that is just absolutely all inspiring.

Wendy Snyder:
I mean, the amount of self control and self motivation that this child has. I mean, she is a straight a student and she like will tell us on the weekend, mom and dad, no, we can’t go to the beach today because I have a test on Monday and I need to study. And we’re just like, who are you? Like, okay. Okay, cool. Well, we’ll come home from the beach earlier. We’ll skip going out to dinner or whatever. And it’s just really, really cool to see. So that’s one example. Another one is how we’ve been really counter-cultural with phones. So from the age probably of nine Stella’s friends here in Southern California, San Diego, California, they all started to get I-phones handed to them.

Wendy Snyder:
And they had service. They had untethered access to apps like Instagram and Snapchat and all the things Tik TOK. And we were just like, no, we’re not going to do that. We got into thank God, every single mentor that I’ve ever had in life, whether it just be someone on Instagram that I’ve never met before, like the person I’m going to tell you next, or a documentary that I wrote that I watched, or a personal mentor that I actually attended classes with. Like, I am so grateful for every single person that’s taught me something or expose me to something because all of it has changed our lives and this is no different, but we were exposed to the work of Colin Kartchner.

Wendy Snyder:
Thank God. Early on, he was, he had a giant Instagram following and he just did amazing work in the world to educate parents and children on the dangers of smartphones and social media and all the things he unfortunately passed away last year, which is just heartbreaking because his work was again so monumental for me and Terry. And I know my whole community because it, it gave me the confidence to be so firm and different around phones and technology with my kids. And we were, you know, we were in talks to have him come speak in San Diego. And it was just really sad, but, but he gave me the confidence and the education to be very different and to set a firm rule and say, no, Stella, you’re not going to have an iPhone until you graduate from eighth grade.

Wendy Snyder:
So there’s a pledge. I always recommend everybody joins. It’s called wait till eighth pledge. And it’s, it’s awesome. But, and it is very, like, there are so many moments where it was, has been so tough to be the outcasts. So literally, so out of, I’d say out of 10 friends, Stila has to let’s, let’s just say a group of 10 last year. Two of them didn’t have smartphones. Everybody else had untethered access to the smartphones. So there were so many conversations over the years, like so many tearful conversations where Stella would just beg me, mommy, please, mommy, please.

Wendy Snyder:
Like you don’t understand every single one of my kids, every single one of my friends has it. I promise you I’ll do this and that. And I promise you, I won’t have apps. And I promise you all these things that I I’ll work for. It I’ll get a job. Like she, just for years, she was just so sad about it. And during those conversations of me being from and talking to Terry, there were so many moments where I was terrified. I was like, what am I doing to my kid? Am I causing her to be like, oh my gosh, my mom’s the worst. And she going to be scarred by this of what being the only child who isn’t allowed to have this smartphone and she’s going to be the outcast. And I remember we would send her to volleyball tournament in like group vans.

Wendy Snyder:
And I just would tug her goodbye and be like, oh God, please give her the strength. Just to be confident being the different one, because she would tell me, mom, we have a two-hour drive and the kid, the girls are just going to be on their phone. Non-stop like, no, one’s going to talk to me. And so anyways, the point of me telling you this story is I was scared and it took bravery and courage to stay the course. And here we are, years later, I’m still is now halfway through eighth grade. And it flipped this last year where all of a sudden she became the confident, like Antifa leader, almost not anti phone. I shouldn’t say that she became almost an advocate for this lifestyle.

Wendy Snyder:
And it just, all of a sudden clicked for her. And she, and you could tell she moved more into the space of like, not that she says this to me, but she, you could tell by the conversation shifted. And she would, she almost has a perspective now of like, I’m so thankful that my mom had these firm roles with me and has protected my mental health and has helped me develop the social skills and has helped me avoid the addiction of technology and smartphones and social media. Like you can tell she gets it now because she sees how 90% of her friends are addicted to the devices. It’s their entire identity. And I even had a conversation with her, her friend, her good friend’s mom a few weeks ago.

Wendy Snyder:
And she said to me, Wendy, you can use me as an example. Cause I asked her mom about four years ago, Hey, do you want to join this pledge with me? Do you want to do this note iPhone thing? And her mom was like, ah, no, I don’t think we can. And she said, I, you know, they, she took the angle of my, we need to be able to get ahold of our child, which I get it. You guys remember gab phones are the way to do that. If you want to do that. But at the time, like she just made the choice to get her the iPhone. And she told me the other day, when we were on the phone, she said, Wendy, you can use me as an example. It was one of the biggest, biggest mistakes we’ve ever made in our parenting life was to give her that phone because she is fully addicted.

Wendy Snyder:
It is her entire identity. And also she is now struggling with anxiety. So it’s like, you know, it was, it was sad, but it was also, you know, I had a wonderful discussion with that mom and let her know what a wonderful mom she is and everybody makes mistakes. And it’s not too late to change the strategy of the smartphone with her daughter. But it just, it made me realize like, gosh, I’m so grateful that I was brave and courageous. And I stayed the course and I was, I stepped into being the outcast because again, now I feel I’m like, I I’m just so happy that we did that because I know when my daughter walks into high school, she’s going to be so much more prepared from a social, emotional angle to handle having the responsibility of this phone and the devices and the social and all the things.

Wendy Snyder:
Okay. All right. What other stories do I have for you just to give you an example of feeling scared and then doing it anyways and feeling the bravery and, and courage on the other side? Well, let me tell you a few things about Terrin. I think that maybe might help you too. So Terrin is my ten-year-old and now, yeah, he’s almost 11. Oh my gosh. He turns 11 very soon, but there have also been times where I decided to do something or implement positive parenting or Compassionate discipline. And remember Compassionate discipline has been a huge part of this. You guys. So here at Fresh Start Family this month over on Instagram and here through the podcast, I’m really doing a lot of teaching on uncompassionate Discipline, and even teaching a free workshop at the end of the month that I hope you guys will join me for.

Wendy Snyder:
But Compassionate discipline is remember very counter-cultural and there will be so many times when you choose to implement Compassionate discipline tools, instead of traditional fear and force based punishment tools, you will feel like an outcast. You will feel scared that what you’re doing is not going to work. You will feel scared that people are judging you. You will feel scared that what if this doesn’t work and my child grows up to be a maniac. What if I’m being permissive like you will have, you will have fears. It’s just part of practicing positive parenting. However, when you persevere and when you do it anyways, you will get to the other side and experience the same type of bravery and courage that I now relishing.

Wendy Snyder:
And I promise you, you will get there. You just have to have faith that if your heart is calling you to learn more and implement positive parenting, especially Compassionate discipline in your home, stay the course, get supported, join a support program, attend to free, attend my free Compassionate discipline Workshop later this month, do what you need to do, but just, just know that you are incredible. I see you. You are brave and it’s going to pay off. I promise you. So, so yeah. So when it comes to Terrin and Stella, there’s been a lot of Compassionate discipline over the years. And I think I’m going to tell you actually, one more story before I move on to give you an example of Terrin. So one more example was Stella where Compassionate Discipline came in.

Wendy Snyder:
That was very counter-cultural. It was one night. I dropped her off at band and I told her, Hey, you can go have pizza with your friends beforehand. She was, I think, 11 at the time. And it was like right across the street from pizza. So I was like, okay, this is Stella growing older. It’s okay. She should be able to have a slice of pizza and a soda before band, a drummer. But I told her, I am not okay with you crossing the road in that area. And I went to drive away and she didn’t see me because I had kind of like driven to a spot where she couldn’t see me. And I watched her as she and her friends crossed in exactly the spot I told her not to. Now I’m a bit of a safety Karen, because there were, I’ve known. I’ve known, well, I should say this.

Wendy Snyder:
I grew up on a street where a little buddy of mine got off the school bus when she was in kindergarten and got hit by a car was mentally and physically disabled for the rest of her life, severely, mentally, and physically disabled the rest of her life. And then I also have a friend right here in Southern California who held her neighbor’s son after he had gotten hit by a car on his bicycle. And a few hours later passed away in the hospital. So safety to me is a big freaking deal. And yes, I am the safety care. And I always joke that I’m going to like dress up as a Karen for Halloween because I’m always the one on the block that is telling my neighbors that I love so much.

Wendy Snyder:
I love their children. I love them. Like you gotta be extra careful with safety cars are no joke. So I’ve taught my kids this over the years. And that night Stella made a big mistake. And instead of grounding her or taking away her devices or her iPads or not letting her go to play dates or whatever it may be, I chose to work with her. And with Compassionate Discipline, we had a long, long talk about why that we had such a Firm rule about it. There were tears that turned into a beautiful conversation around mama. It’s just have to be different, right? Like all my friends don’t have parents who are agro and won’t let them cross the road there. So it’s hard to be different. It’s hard to be the only kid that doesn’t have the phone it’s hard.

Wendy Snyder:
And it just was a very connecting conversation because we just kind of held space for each other. She held space to hear me out on why I’m so passionate about the roles that I have as a mother. And I held space for her to say how hard it was and how, what it was like to be a teenage, you know, a pre a tween at that time. So long story short, we ended up implementing a redo, which is one of the logical consequences that I’m going to teach about later this month at the free Compassionate discipline Workshop. But I went and had her actually, I dropped her off to have pizza with the same group of friends. And then I let her know that I was going to be watching from a distance and that she had the opportunity to redo the situation.

Wendy Snyder:
And even if her friend said, no, we’re going to cross here. She got to practice what it looked like to be different and say, okay, well, I’m going to go to the crosswalk. I’ll meet you guys at band. And sure enough, she did it and not, and her friends didn’t, they were like, okay, cool. We’ll walk to the crosswalk with you. It just took her, developing the life skill of how to stand up for herself and how to have the self control without me forcing her to do it or making her do it or else she was going to get punished or hurt or whatever it was.

Wendy Snyder:
Okay. So that’s a great example of,

2:
Hey, there, I’m pausing this episode one more time to invite you to a free workshop. I am hosting at the end of October on Discipline. Can you join me because mama, I know you are sick and tired of relying on hand-me-down parenting tactics like spanking, threatening, intimidating, and using harsh punishments that create a total relationship strain and don’t even work anyways. Long-term to end your child’s misbehavior for good. I want to help you learn a new way. So you can go to bed at night, feeling proud of the way you taught your children important life lessons, instead of feeling guilty or full of blame that your kids make you do things you wish you didn’t do.

2:
Join me on October 28th for a free one hour live workshop where you’ll learn three steps to building up a firm and kind compassionate toolkit that works with kids of all ages.

Wendy Snyder:
You can head to FreshStartFamilyonline.com/Disciplineclass. I cannot wait to support you at class on October 28th, Feeling scared of doing it different because again, you know, I thought, you know, every single, not every single time, but a lot of times when I do Compassionate Discipline with my kids, especially when they were younger. Now that I’ve got this dialed, I’m like, oh, dang, this is awesome. We’re going to do Compassionate discipline. It’s going to be awesome. But when they were younger, I was like, oh my gosh, am I being permissive? Am I being weak? Are they like not going to get this lesson?

Wendy Snyder:
If I do it in this light play-based manner, there was just a lot of fears. And I did it anyways. And the frickin payoff is awesome because now this child of mine, guns and roses, they switch out of mine. She has the most intrinsic self control I have ever seen in a teenager in my life. Again, she’s almost 14. Just the other week. Terry was coming home from dropping Terrin off at school. And Stella was on her e-bike and across the street was six kids who were, you know, both crossing the street at the same time, they got to the street, M Stella pushed the thing and she had just missed the walking guy.

Wendy Snyder:
So the kids on the other side did the same thing. And again, Stella could not see Terry. So she did not know that daddy was watching her, but across the street, the six kids on their e-bikes cause e-bikes are crazy here in Southern California, they all just ran the red light. Like you’re supposed to wait for the walking guy, right? Like that’s when it’s the safest place, save us time to cross because this is a six lane crossing. Like it is that if cars are going through on a green, they’re doing 60, 60 per hour and these kids just went for it. They saw that the walking guy wasn’t there, they kind of laughed it off and they just went now, I’m sure their parents have taught them not to do that, but they didn’t teach them in the same way.

Wendy Snyder:
Right. So then there’s Stella on the other side. And she, you could tell she kind of shrugged, but she was just like, oh fine. And she just sat there and waited. She let the whole red, green light happen. And then finally the walking guy came and she crossed, but Terry came home and he was just like, babe, oh my gosh, it’s amazing. Stella has the best self-control. And he told me this story and we got to celebrate her that night. We took her to Boba and just said, dude, this is a big deal. Thank you for taking care of yourself. Thank you for being willing to be different. And again, in that moment, she probably felt scared. Like, oh, my friends are gonna make fun of me. I don’t think it was her friends that day. It was other kids, but she, you know, she probably thought to herself, oh great.

Wendy Snyder:
Like they’re probably going to be like, oh, you’re a safety carrot and make fun of her or whatever. And she was brave and did it anyway. She resisted the urge to run the red light and put herself in danger of getting hit. Okay. So those are some stories about Stella. And then I’m with Terrin. I’d say being able to, to know how to use Compassionate discipline with him over the years, especially when it came to like things like lying and stealing. Those were like little things, whether it was when he was four years old and he stole a little Tutu train from the bookstore, like the train, the train track that we used to go visit there, or it was, you know, how to like handling when he would come home.

Wendy Snyder:
And he would get like a note sent home from his teacher that he was talking in class or something, being able to use Compassionate discipline with him over the years. No doubt has helped him form into the young man that he is now. He tells me everything. And even if he doesn’t, if he holds something in and he, you know, like say let’s hold something that he didn’t tell me the truth for awhile. He knows how to listen to his body. And, and then he always comes clean and he always tells me, and even if it’s uncomfortable for him, he tells me everything. And then we talk about it. We, we do some learning around it.

Wendy Snyder:
It’s not like in Compassionate discipline. You’re just like, cool, awesome. Right on. Okay, don’t do that again. It’s like, no, there’s going to be learning. There’s going to be logical consequences. There’s going to be an activity. There’s going to be practice. Like there’s going to be a life skill taught like kids who have parents who practiced positive parenting and Compassionate Discipline know that, but they aren’t scared for, they’re not scared. They’re going to get in trouble. They’re not scared that they’re going to get humiliated. They’re not scared. They’re going to get hit. They just know they’re going to be held responsible. So over the years, that’s, that’s been really, I think, impactful. And at the same time, there’s definitely moments where he’s made mistakes, where I felt scared.

Wendy Snyder:
Like he actually made a really big mistake when he was three years old and hurt my ups pushed my friend’s son off a play structure when they were excited, they were playing tag and Terrin got too excited and he pushed his little buddy off the play structure and his little buddy got hurt. He hurt his wrist pretty bad. And I remember at that moment feeling so scared, but I was being permissive and weak for not like punishing him. And I even thought, I mean, this was very early on when I was just becoming a parenting educator. I literally probably just started my parenting education, like credits and training. But I just remember having this moment of thinking like crap, like, should I be spanking this kid?

Wendy Snyder:
Like, he can’t just go round and do this. And inside I just prayed. And I was like, God, help me. Like, what do I do here? And I actually ended up sending him to grandma’s house. Thank God for Gigi lives right around the corner. Now she moved to California when my son was born, but I sent him over there for three days. You guys, so I could take a calming break and pray and figure out how I was going to teach him with compassion and from Compassionate discipline. And it all worked out great. We did so much Compassionate discipline so much from, like I said, the workshop I’m going to be teaching at the end of this month. And he literally has never laid hands on another kid in his life.

Wendy Snyder:
He is the most gentlest kindest kid and it took bravery and courage to use Compassionate discipline with him. And I’m a Parenting educator. You know what I mean? So just remember feeling scared is part of the journey. Okay. It’s just part of it. And I want you guys to know that when you feel scared, it’s, it’s when you feel afraid you are safe and you can do it anyways, but stay supported, you know, join me for the workshop. At the end of the month, we’re going to have so much fun learning how to build out a firm and kind compassionate, discipline toolkit. You can save your seat over at Fresh Start Family, online.com forward slash Discipline class.

Wendy Snyder:
But Courage really is a super power when it comes to parenting you guys. And I want you all to tap into the feeling of empowerment of what it feels like to have courage. It feels scared and do it anyways because all parents, all human beings are looking for opportunities to feel powerful. Again, I teach so much about this in the foundations course and at the bonfire support community program, but we all are looking to feel powerful and there’s different ways to get that need met a lot of traditional kind of hand-me-down parenting tactics. The way parents end up feeling powerful is by overpowering is by using fear and force based hammy down Parenting tactics to make your child comply, right?

Wendy Snyder:
It’s like the idea of like, I’m bigger than you. I am older than you. I’m smarter than you. I can take away everything you own. I have more money than you. Like I am the leader over top of you. It’s called power over where here at Fresh Start Family, we’re going to teach you how to have power with your children, how to actually share the power in your home, which by the way, is what from Kind affective, amazing leaders do. That’s the, when you think of the most incredible leaders on the planet, right? I think of Martin Luther king, Jr. I think of Nelson Mandela. I think of Jesus.

Wendy Snyder:
I think of Malala UFA. Stepha there’s a lot of leaders that I look up to, but they lead with firm kindness and they shared the power. So when you look at that and you realize that you can feel powerful as a parent, by believing in something, having the courage to do it, even though you feel scared and then getting on the other side and seeing the massive benefits that you would have never gotten to, if you would have just gone with culture, if you would’ve just kept doing things the way they’ve always been, been done, when you successfully break a painful generational cycle, you guys, oh, let me tell you what it feels like a million bucks.

Wendy Snyder:
Like you will never feel more powerful than when you break a painful generational cycle. And yes, I know. We think of when I say that term, I know a lot of you are probably thinking like, okay, painful generational cycle. What do you mean? Like hitting my kids or yes, there’s that right? Like your, maybe your parents hit you and their parents hit them and their parents hit them. Like that’s how they got kids to comply. Right? Like that is an example of a painful generational cycle where there’s literally physical pain being handed down and taught. This is how you get another person to listen to you. There’s that. But there’s also painful generational cycles in the form of just, you know, like passing judgment on others or feeling really disconnected from your parents or not being able to have peaceful conflict resolution in your home.

Wendy Snyder:
Sorry, I have a cold or not being able to handle conflict in a healthy way or not be able to make a men’s after a relationship has been strained or an argument has happened in your home. Like, these are all examples of also painful generational cycles where this is where you hear people say, oh my gosh, like when did I become my mother? Now? I know we all love our moms. Right. But there are some of us who are like, oh my gosh. I’m like, I never wanted to act like my mom. And now I’m acting exactly like my mom. Well, that’s because it’s a generational cycle, right? Like it takes courage to break that and realize like, I never liked how my, you know, how someone did this to me.

Wendy Snyder:
And then here I am realizing that I’m doing it to somebody else or the way I’m thinking, right? Like negative. Self-talk, that’s an example of a painful generational cycle. Maybe you talk to yourself really crappy and you’re really hard on yourself. And so was your mom. And so was her mom. That’s an example of a painful generational cycle, but it’s going to take courage to break that. Okay. And you will feel scared when you’re stepping into learning and growing. Whether it’s doing a course or joining a support community or saving your seat for a free workshop or whatever, it may be. Just know that I see you. I admire you. I am so freaking inspired by you.

Wendy Snyder:
And I love, love, love cheering you on. All right, families. Well, that’s what I’ve got for you today. I hope you have enjoyed this conversation. Thanks for hanging out with me. Make sure you go get registered for the free workshop on Compassionate discipline. Three ways to build out a firm and kind compassionate, Discipline toolkit, Fresh Start Family, online.com forward slash Discipline class. I will see you there. And thanks again for listening.

2:
For more information, go to FreshStartFamilyonline.com. Thanks for listening. Families. Have a great day.

Wendy Snyder:
Hey there families. If you loved this episode, make sure you come find me over on Instagram and shoot me a DM or share an audio message with me. I love to connect with you guys over on that platform. It makes it really easy for us to exchange some DMS or send messages. Tell me a little bit about your family. What, how you found me? What brought you to want to learn more about positive parenting or the work that we do here at Fresh Start Family? I would really, really love to hear from you. I’m at FreshStartWendy over on Instagram. I’ll see you there.

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at [email protected] or connect with me over on Facebook @freshstartfamily & Instagram @freshstartwendy.

 

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