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Podcast Episode Transcripts:
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Welcome to the kids sleep show, where we help tired parents from around the world to get their children to fall asleep independently, sleep through the night and build healthy sleep habits for life. I’m your host, Courtney Zentz. Now let’s sleep together. Hi, everyone, welcome to the kids sleep show, I am excited to announce a guest today, a woman by the name of Christina Campos from the impactful parents, she is joining us today, and is going to talk to us all about her background in education, working with children and really helping parents to become educated, educated, and to be the best version of themselves. And to help their kids be the best version they can of themselves as well. So thank you very much, Christina, for joining me today. I’m really happy to have you here. And I’d love for you to introduce yourself and certainly tell our listeners a little more about yourself than the impactful parent and really how you found yourself here. Almost 20 years later, from education. So so welcome. And thank you for joining us today.
Thank you for having me on. Yeah, so Well, my dream of founding the impactful parent actually began on me crying in my closet. You know, every parent has that place in their house, where you go and talk to your best friend on the phone or go and hide and cry and cry. As usual emotion did, you don’t want to show your kids and I have four children. And my place is my closet. And ironically, that’s kind of where my journey began. Or I was crying in my closet because I had found out that my husband wanted divorce. And it was a little blindsided to me and I was a little devastated about it. So that’s kind of where my journey began. But after a lot of time of crying in your closet, you come to a pivot. And you think to yourself, okay, do I get up and change things and move forward? Or do I continue to feel sorry for myself? And how long can I cry in my closet. And of course, I just did choose to, to get up. But that getting up was actually a lot harder than I anticipated, that decision was actually much easier. Because you have little eyes watching, you want to be good Oh, my dear kids, and I wanted to show them that was it man, and he to have this shift in my life. But the harder part came really looking the mirror after that. Because once I did that, I actually realized that I didn’t recognize myself anymore. And that was really tough to swallow. Because I’m such a giver, I’m a giver. I love helping people. And through the last 20 years, I realized I had just given too much and really hadn’t taken care of who I was sort of giving so much to my children and giving so much to my husband, and then I’m a teacher by profession. And as you guys know, teaching is not a eight hour job, it is very much a 24 hour job in a lot of ways. And but I had to choose to stop taking care of other kids and start focusing on my own. And with that shift on, I had to figure out who I was again. And that process on. I realized, yes, I’m a giver, I need to figure out how to continually continue to give to people, I really, you got to be your authentic self on Otherwise, they’ll be very unhappy. And one of the things I have to do is continue to help. So that’s how I doubted the impactful parents on now I get to help kids from the source, which is the home by educating the parents and helping parents learn how to interact and talk to their kids and help parents navigate through really tough times. Because parenting is hard. It’s so difficult and it changes and right. When you think you got the game plan done and things are going well. Then all of a sudden your kids get hormones and they become adolescents of the game changes again. And so I don’t feel I felt like it wasn’t enough support for school aged parents through their journey. And I decided that for our I had my calling that I needed to fulfill that need. So that’s what I do right now is I help parents of school aged children. That’s
amazing. I have two school aged children right now myself that are in school. So it’s been a little bit of a different experience for us this fall versus You know, this spring and I recognized in my own self that I was crying in the closet, frankly, you know, I’m trying to run my own company and I’m on the phone all day and you know, trying to teach Your pre k child and the child in kindergarten was not my thing I was I’m really good at teaching kids to sleep. But I was not good at teaching mountain math. And, you know, this summer kind of had to recognize for myself, like, I am not the best version of myself for my kids, by teaching them and I know that in the fall, I will not be a good teacher for them. Like, I recognize that it’s just not in my skill set. And that’s okay. That’s why I didn’t become a teacher, you know, and so we made the choice to send our kids back to private Catholic school down the road, because they had enrollment, they were going back five days a week, and we were comfortable with that choice based on, you know, the summer with my kids being in camp and stuff, and everything was okay. So, you know, they had a pretty good system in place with school. So we made that choice, you know, for my kids this fall. And so it’s been working out well for them, you know, to be back in the classroom, but I have to say, like, since March, I feel like, you could pretty much take a grenade and toss it into every family in the house, and, you know, hope that, you know, hope that everything works out. On the other end, it’s just been such chaos. And I, you know, I don’t think it’s obviously going to go away anytime soon. And I’m curious from, you know, just your perspective and background in what’s happening right now in the world, you know, where have you seen, I think the biggest shifts in, you know, your practice, and really trying to be a good version of yourself as a parent, and then, you know, the folks that are reaching out to you since March, like, you know, have you noticed anything particular in, the children that you’re working with, or the parents that you’re working with, that has kind of been something new that maybe parents aren’t even fully recognizing, as a result of what’s going on in the world, like, talk to me a little bit about, you know, just your practice from a march standpoint, and kind of what it’s looked like with, you know, obviously, you trying to balance it all as well. But,
you know, what does it look like? And
how have things changed a bit for you?
Sure, yeah. No, I mean, we have all been flipped upside down. I mean, that’s the one thing I can say, first and foremost is that you are not alone. You. We have, we’re all feeling the confinement, the stress that everything has come in with this change in the shift of what we all have had to experience. And I know, it’s really hard not to compare yourself to social media, where everybody posts all the great things, but you just can’t do that. Because those are only the snapshot moments of people’s happy lives. And nobody’s life is really, sincerely like that. So yeah, we’re all in the same boat, and why I feel parents are missing, I feel like it’s probably a little bit of empathy for our kids. Where, as an adult, we have learned over our experiences of life, how to adapt a little bit better than a child. And, and I mean, even a teenager, actually, I think teenagers are having much more of a harder time to adapt, and even are a little bit younger child, like, let’s say, a 10 year old. But in a lot of ways more has been taken away from them. Children thrive, to thrive off routine, because routine creates security and creates a place of belonging, and you know, what your purpose is, when you have a routine in your life? Well, the pandemic has taken that away from children on school created, create much of their routine, and it has been flipped, right. So along with that, our teenagers have had, in my opinion, one of the biggest hits, because here they are developmentally appropriately trying to pull away from their parents to become their own unique selves and learn who they are. But now we’re telling them that they can’t see their friends and they can’t do it, they can’t figure out who they are with their friends, which is really typically who they lean on to, since they everything inside of them is telling them to pull away from their parents to find who they are. So they rely on other others tribe that they’ve created. And now we can’t see them and in addition to that, you can’t look forward to graduation and prawns and dances and you know, social events where they learn how to navigate through relationships, and it’s all been taken away. And that’s when you learn all these really critical social skills and even social emotional skills. We’ve learned how to deal with heartbreak and you learn how to deal with all these things. And it’s just been gone. And it’s, it’s really devastating to the teenager. So across the board for all ages, I’ve seen a lot of increase in anxiety and depression and anger and children. And, and I feel like as adults for COVID well mean you’re okay and are they want to retreat into their electronic cuz they have nowhere else to go in their mind. But then we’re, we’re mad at them when they spend too much screen time. So it’s like there’s they’re gonna can’t win cycles. And as an older again, as an adult, we’re like candidates figure out something to do go play outside. But this newer generation hasn’t developed those social skills yet, like we did when we were kids to really be able to do that so easily. So now they’re learning to do it now. But I think in the beginning of the pandemic was kind of wanted them to learn it quickly and say, Hey, don’t go scope outside and figure out what to do. And you know, and you got this, can you we did as kids, yeah. But there’s a lot of lack of empathy that they’ve never done it. And now they’re learning how to do it. And I think they’re learning they are learning out. But it’s, it’s taken longer than I think parents really wanted it to. And so there, there’s a lot of lack of empathy, and then all this super emotions happening with our children that it’s hard to deal with when ourselves, we’re emotional. Yeah, we are now wearing different hats. And we’ve gotten our social life taken away too. So it’s hard for everybody.
You know, I just made my first lunch date with my girlfriend, actually, next Monday is in you know, I haven’t seen her in a very long time. And she was one of my best friends. And I’m like, my husband’s like, well, where are you going to go to lunch? And like, I don’t care. I don’t even care if we eat lunch, I just want to go stare at a wall and talk to my friend in a park
you know, outside,
I’d like walking around our town like it doesn’t
you know what I mean? Like,
I need connection. And I think to your point, you know, this weekend, we were laughing because we’re pretty involved as I’m sure every parent is trying to be with their kids as best they can. We’re a to a dual working family. And we got stuff to do. Yeah, now and my kids are both like, let’s just play I want to play Can you come play? We’re gonna go play, let’s go play Mommy, can you play and now my kids are younger than, you know, middle and high school. They’re four and six. But, you know, they’re constantly like, Can you play with us? And you know, my husband looked at my daughter, he’s like, do you even think I knew who my dad was growing up, like, I never played with my parents at all, I played with dirt, and sometimes probably sewage based on what I’m learning now as an adult, you know, so he was joking. And he’s like, you know, we never played with our kids. And, you know, I think when this pandemic first started in March, I was here all day, and I was with
my kids, right, but I wasn’t present for them.
I was here all day, and I was resentful that I’m like, stuck here all day, right. But at the same time, like, my kids don’t know that they don’t see that I’m not able to play, they just see I’m here and I’m ignoring them when I’m actually working. And they don’t understand, you know, and, and so it’s trying to balance I think, to your point, that empathy for our children at all ages, right, I think you’re, you know, you’re talking a lot about like teenagers, like, I was just thinking, I’m like, man, they’re missing out on like, homecoming and the parade and I know, in the grand scheme of the world, it’s a very small problem, but to that child, like, they’re missing that, you know, and that sucks are like the kids that are in sports that are trying to get scholarships or play instruments, and they’re trying to, you know, get into a good school with some sort of academic or, you know, activity based, you know, scholarship, like, are they missing out on some of those opportunities, which, you know, frankly, for them, maybe their only shot to get into college, you know, so, like, you start looking at the deeper level impacts to like some of these kids and it’s like, even the children my girlfriend’s a school psychologist at the intermediate unit here in Philadelphia. And she was driving during the pandemic with her six year old daughter to 40 houses every single morning to give kids breakfast, because she’s like that they rely on the school and they can’t eat right now, you know? And it’s like all this stuff where you’re like, Oh my gosh, this goes so much bigger than me like having lunch with my girlfriend. It’s like holy cow. And you know, I think to your point like the the teenagers are struggling because they need that outlet. And the outlet, frankly, is technology today, like that’s, that’s where they are. I remember when we were growing up, it was beepers. Like I had a beeper and I thought I was so cool that I had a beeper and my friends could paged me. And I can go to the payphone and call him back. And we’d meet at the south mall, and, you know, walk around with our big jenko jeans on and that was what we did, you know, and now I feel like kids do FaceTime and house parties, and they’re connecting through video games and stuff. And I think it’s a different way of connection for sure. There’s a lot of technology, but, you know, I definitely see like, then parents are trying to restrict it. And I understand especially like devices in the bedroom. I’m just not a fan of but like, you know that that’s their outlet. And like I guess my question for you would be like, how do you tell a parent to balance that right? Cuz you want to give them empathy? You want to give them support, but you also have to have boundaries can’t be a free for all right, you know, or everybody’s crying in their closet, like what does that look like? You know, from your experience, both professionally and personally with four kids like, how do you balance that?
And that is the key right? It’s balance and and so I feel like The mistake a lot of parents make is not creating the balance and saying, No, you can’t do that. And there’s no discussion, because very, I’m telling you that that’s unhealthy. There’s other things that you can do stop being on the screen. And I think we need to shift that mindset, again, empathy, I’m not saying let your kid be on a screen all day long, I’m just saying realize that they don’t know how to play outside, necessarily. They don’t know how to entertain themselves, necessarily, because we haven’t taught that we haven’t forced them to do that. And our schools have given them the structure to do that. But outside of school, at home in this kind of environment, they don’t know. And you don’t know what you don’t know, until you know, and sometimes kids behave a certain way, because they don’t know any other way to behave. And when it’s that case, you need to sit them down and well, for all tourism, but have started discussions that okay, you know, I understand that you’re on electronics, let’s say, several hours a day, let’s look at that. What are you doing there? Okay, this is this time, you’re just kind of, you know, wasting because you’re bored, okay, I get that maybe that’s a few hours. But this time, it’s because you’re trying to be social. Maybe you’re trying to talk to a friend, maybe it’s something specific, they’re some kind of social media, something where it’s actual interaction, a snapchat video conference, something that they’re trying to do that, figure out what they’re doing on the media, so that you can understand it. And then you can work with them and say, Okay, well, this downtime, we need to shift that it causes too much screentime. So what sounds reasonable, and if you negotiate with your child, and it’s so hard, I know for many parents to to sit down and negotiate because you want to be be authoritarian. And and I know that there’s a ton of parents out there who are just like things are the way they are, because I said so. But you will have so much more compliance from your child, if you get their input on what you’re doing and the rules. In fact, if you ask your child to help you make the rules, you will get so much more compliance to those rules, than if you were just to tell them what they are. And you have less resentment. And they feel heard. And you’re creating a better relationship with your child, it trickled down to the domino effect, just having this conversation and sitting down and trying to coming at it with I need to understand where you’re coming from. But it’s not healthy. So I need to set boundaries for you because you’re not creating boundaries for yourself. So how can we create boundaries together so that you could be healthier? But still get what you need from the screen? Yeah, you come in like that. And it’s a different conversation altogether, then you spend too much time on your computer, get off?
Yeah, go downstairs. Yeah.
Yeah, go downstairs and play completely different. And to enforce those personally, with my four kids, I use app to help me control electronics on the one I use is, I don’t know how to pronounce it. So it’s like QC though, it’s qu e s t, I do something like that. I forget. I’m obviously not endorsing them, because I don’t know. Yeah, that’s, that’s the app that I use. And what it does is it regulates their screen time to a certain amount of time per day, it also can give me a report on what they’ve been doing. So I can see how much time they’ve been creating on Snapchat or, or YouTube or I can even shut off particular apps where they can’t get to them onto their devices. So it gives me a lot of control. And at the same time, it allows me to give my kids a lot more freedom. Because I feel like that’s kind of where parents kind of lock it down on our kids is we we fear the unknown. Well, what does my kid doing? I just don’t want them to do it. Yeah, well, this gives you allows them to have more freedom because you know what they’re doing. And you can tell them or not up to you as a parent. I’m monitoring this. And they know because it’ll shut off when that time limit hits. Yeah. So you can control what time of day they’re allowed to be on their apps like that. And guess what my bottom line here is there’s apps like that go look for them. And it helps so that you don’t have to be the nagger. and say, hey, you’ve had three hours now turn off your, your computer, it will turn it off automatically for you. No more does. question.
I think that’s awesome. I, I completely, totally and 100% agree with your perspective on their buy in, I work with children, you know, that are a bit younger, typically, like elementary school age, and you know what we do as far as like the routines and stuff. So you’re not a dictator, go take your shower, Go brush your teeth, go get your pajamas on, go get your dictating, go, go go, you do this, do this, do this. And kids don’t feel empowered, where it’s like, helping them to feel empowered and make the choices. You know, either you do this, or this, like either brush your teeth, or I’ll do it for you. Like most kids are gonna pick that they do it themselves, not mom jammin a toothbrush in there. But, you know, I think you know, with behavior as kids get older, and you have certain acting out, like, to your point, I have parents sit down and make basically not only a reward jar, but also a consequence jar. And so kids are fully to your point vested in, if they choose this choice, they get the reward, if they make this choice, there’s a consequence, but the consequences are things that they discussed, not wanting to lose, right? So to your point, like they’re more vested in the actions, the chores, the responsibility that we’re giving them, within boundaries, kids do thrive on routine, I totally see that in what I do, they want that expectation, because the unknown is fearful, right brings on anxiety, but at the same time, like boundaries are meant to be pushed. So I think there’s this balance as a parent to say, look, look, I’m gonna empower you. But there are also boundaries, like we’re not running a free for all around this joint, you know, I see it a lot. With my, like, even looking back, I was talking my husband the other day, because, you know, we we, we try to be very good about what we give our children as far as, you know, nutrition, I try to make whole food, you know, nourishing meals, but like, I make chocolate chip cookies, but I use, you know, oat flour, maybe instead of regular flour, or, you know, coconut sugar instead of white sugar, like trying to make choices that maybe are a bit healthier, you know, for them. But if I don’t ever give them a chocolate chip cookie, the day they get to their friend’s house and can have a chocolate chip cookie, they’re going to eat 7000 of them, I can’t help so it’s one of those words, and you just try to balance it like, Do I want you eating Doritos every day? No, but doritos are good. So enjoy them as a treat, right? Like, you know, and nothing against Doritos is just an example. Right, but you know, just trying to get it, you know, just trying to, I think provide balance and structure and anything that we do, you know, if you open the floodgates, they’re open, but if you keep them closed, that dam is going to break at some point, and you don’t want to be on the other end of it. You know?
That’s exactly right. It’s very well said. Um, so I’ve always, in my, my practice, I tell parents that I break it down into that chosen has three fundamental needs. And those needs have to be fulfilled if you want your child to be their best self. And those three needs are security, acceptance, and power. And power is what we’re talking about right now. Kids need to know that they matter. They want to feel that they have an influence, and that their existence have a place in the world. And it’s because everybody, all people, not just children, we have to have a sense of purpose in our life. And that’s where that sense of sense of power comes from. And you’ll, especially teenagers, but every child, that’s why they push the boundaries a little bit, because they need to know that if they, you know, break something, that there’s a consequence to it, that if they do something wrong, or do something, right, even the way that the consequence to that if I work really hard, and I try is anyone gonna notice. And that, that power is what makes you feel like you have sense of purpose. Like you can control your environment in the world. And when children feel power less, like they can’t control anything in their little world at all. This is where the depression comes in. This is where we get suicide from our kids because they feel I don’t matter. No one cares that I’m here. My Existence doesn’t make any kind of consequence. So why do I need to be here? And it’s so sad. I mean that I choked up saying those words, because it’s such a sad, sad thing, but that that is what is happening. As it happened when our teens or younger kids fall into this depression. They don’t have any sense of power and no life. And again, Dr. quarantine, you’re asking me, what do you see and it’s kids having less and less time. power over their life. And so more important than any other time in your child’s upbringing and your parenting, is it for you to come down to them and speak at them at eye level and say, hey, look, you matter. I want to know what you think helped me with this and give them a little bit of power in their world. Yeah, it will go a long, long way. Because we do as adults have to create boundaries, we can’t let them just go run amok, you know, and that’s not what I’m telling people and you, you are the person responsible for your child, you have to create those boundaries, but give them say, yeah, give them some power in it.
I think that’s an absolutely great way to kind of close it out. I feel like I could talk to you all day about this, because it’s this resonates right now, you know, and I think that starting there and reassessing your situation, and giving those kids the chance to have a voice in a time where otherwise I think many feel muted is a huge first step for them to take. And if parents were interested in, you know, finding you and learning more about how you work with families at the impactful parent, you know, Christina, take a few minutes and tell folks how they can learn more about you and follow you and come to learn about the way that you’re working to support families.
Oh, I would love that. So I’m on social media, at the impactful parents. And so it’s that impactful parent, if you need the majority of everything I do is absolutely free, because that’s what I really want. And that’s why I created this is to help people on if you want to know more and get some freebies like today, I mentioned those three pillars of security, acceptance and power, your audience can go to HTTPS, that impactful parent calm what every child needs. And I, I actually have a free PDF, though that has questions that you can ask your child to see if those needs are being met. I offer also on a paid level, I offer courses, online courses to help parents with their kids anger management and anxiety management, which is so applicable right now. But that would be on the impactful parent website, all these links are there. But it’s the impactful parent.com it’s actually pretty easy. If I’m done parents, just about anywhere, so and anywhere, just come and follow me. I love it.
That is awesome. And I’ll make sure all of these links that you shared are in the show notes as well. And I do appreciate you coming on today to chat a little bit more about this and certainly happy to continue the conversation. So thank you again for joining. And I appreciate the time today.
Thank you so much.
Hold on one more thing before you go. As the value listener of the kids sleep show, I want to help you build a great sleep or not just in the times you’re listening to the show. But all day every day. Every week of the year. I have a new Facebook group called slumber Made Simple. It’s a place to gather with other parents looking for sleep support, laughs and the latest in sleep research, to build a family that is rested and at their best day in and day out. If you want to be part of the community where you can get free sleep support, weekly training sessions, unbelievable content and so much more. Head on over to tiny transitions.com forward slash community. That’s tiny transition stuff comm forward slash
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