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10 Reasons You Should Go Traveling with Your Kids

10 Reasons You Should Go Traveling with Your Kids

Traveling is life-changing. Getting out of the daily grind and being adventurous makes us come alive. My travels have been the best times of my life, and as a mother to three very young children, I can hardly wait to start traveling with them. Here’s why you should go traveling with your kids.

1. To show them that the world is huge.

“It’s a small world,” people say. And yes, at times, it seems the world is small, when you discover you went to the same college as someone or you have the same distant relative. But truth is, the world is enormous. Spending time far from home, where nobody knows you, forces you to realize the world is much bigger than your hometown. Whether your child is the star of the football team, or struggling making friends in school, getting away from life as we know it helps you realize you’re a tiny fish in a very large sea. There’s a huge world out there and a group for everyone, and showing this vast Earth to your children can really help them find their place in the world.

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2. To unplug and truly connect.

Today’s youth and adults are spending increasingly more time sitting in front of electronics. Many families are more connected to technology than each other; it is easy to become engrossed in social media, texting, and watching TV, and not talk to each other. Unplugging as a family will allow you to spend quality time together.

3. To learn about yourselves.

It’s hard to reflect when we’re amidst the daily chaos of busy family lives. Getting away from your job and your kids’ packed schedule of activities can help you learn about each other. Is your child a thrill-seeker or scared to try new things? What about you? Does your family like to follow a schedule or prefer to be spontaneous? What is your favorite part about traveling together? Where would you like to go on your next family trip?

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4. To notice the details.

Kids are observant, and they take time to appreciate the beauty of nature. Traveling with kids will force you to move at their pace; your pace will be slower and your children will point out details you likely would have overlooked without them.

5. To expand their world.

Traveling exposes us to unfamiliar foods, music, styles, cultures, and languages. Your children may discover new things they love.

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6. To rekindle your sense of adventure.

Little kids naturally have a sense of adventure; they love to explore their world. They soak up new experiences, excitedly absorbing each new sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell. Exploring the world with your kids can renew your passion for adventure as you follow their lead and delight in your journeys.

7. To make memories.

Traveling together is a great way for families to build memories, and makes for awesome stories too.

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8. To show them the rewards of hard work.

Traveling can be expensive. Show your kids that working hard can result in amazing vacations. You can promote a strong work ethic and fiscal responsibility by educating them about saving and budgeting for traveling.

9. To teach them history.

The Egyptian Pyramids up close and personal? Yes, please. Seeing famous sights can make textbooks come to life. What better way to teach your child about history than to have them actually touch it?

10. To increase compassion.

Traveling will help your family be thankful for the blessings you have, and will make you realize the extent of what you take for granted—like shelter, safety, and food. Watching news stories isn’t the same as seeing firsthand the conditions many people live in. Developing a personal connection to people from other regions of the world will forever change your hearts.

Featured photo credit: Image from Pixabay via pixabay.com

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Dr. Kerry Petsinger

Entrepreneur, Mindset & Performance Coach, & Doctor of Physical Therapy

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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