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All I Want for Christmas I – To Stop Criticizing People

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Several years ago, I was introduced to a list of suggestions. One of the recommendations from this “Just for Today” reading states, “…criticize not one bit.” Criticize not one bit.  It doesn’t say, “try not to criticize,” or “just criticize when your kids don’t put their shoes in the bin,” or “don’t criticize unless your spouse loads the dishwasher incorrectly.” It states, “criticize not one bit.” The paragraph goes on to read, “I won’t… try to improve or regulate anyone but myself.” I know, right? I thought it was a misprint, too.

Regulating can be a tricky one for me because I do believe one of my jobs as a parent is to teach my kids how to be less annoying. If I didn’t mention the importance of not tapping the back of someone’s chair, speaking quietly in quiet places, or how necessary it is to respect other people’s opinions, beliefs, space and belongings—I wouldn’t feel like I was doing my job. But while my role as a mother requires me to do some regulating, my roles as a wife, family member and friend do not. And there is a very notable difference between regulating little people and trying to improve the people around me.

This year, I’m going to ask Santa for the strength to only manage what absolutely needs managing along with the grace to talk to, not criticize, those people I love most. Yes—just that. Oh, and world peace. It’s unclear to me right now which one is the taller order.

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    Welcome to my blog! Here you can read about what’s on my mind as I try my best to recover from screaming at my kids and nagging the bejesus out my husband.

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