Gift - How Fighting Parents Become Problem Solvers

Communicating Well Brings Couples Closer

YOU DO HELP YOUR FAMILY, when you and your spouse communicate well. If you talk with clarity, speak without over-talking, and use a respectful tone, good things can happen.

Your partner will feel valued, your children will learn, and you'll feel good about your approach.

In today's gift you'll find 3 helpful speaking and listening guidelines:

First - 6 communication tips to establish before you even begin to talk.

Second - 6 recommendations for good discussions when you're together.

Third - 3 important suggestions after you've solved a problem successfully.

These three communication guides could save your marriage. All it takes is a desire to make your relationship stronger, happier, and more fulfilling.

Why not download today's gift and add it to a binder to use whenever you need it.

Pick up your Parenting Gift, How Fighting Parents Become Respectful Problem Solvers, by inserting the code word: SOLVERS


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With warm wishes, 

Jean Tracy, MSS


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Gift - 7 Communication Problems Parents CAN Overcome

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Practice 5 Communication Skills to Prevent This!

COMMUNICATION PROBLEMS BETWEEN PARENTS CAN BE EXPENSIVE! According to the law offices of William 3. Neary, the average cost of divorce is $15,000-30,000. Child Custody Evaluations are $2,000-$10,000 and then there are moving expenses, health insurance, child custody expenses plus a whole lot more. That’s just the monetary side.

Emotionally, divorce puts the whole family through turmoil. Counseling is often recommended for parents and children.

Today’s gift shares 7 communication difficulties many parents experience and 5 communication skills to practice.

Fighting Couples Need to Make 2 Choices:

1. The decision to overcome communication breakdowns.

2. The determination to practice good communication with each other.

To download your free parenting gift, click on Subscriber Gifts.

Then insert the code word OVERCOME.

Give your family a brighter future. Practice the skills that increase love, respect, and keep your together.

Add this gift to your notebook or binder to use whenever you need it.

To get more couple help pick up Parents in Love to make your romance sizzle.

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With warm wishes, 

Jean Tracy, MSS


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Blog Video: Can Fighting Parents Help Kids Feel Safe?

A boy I counseled had often seen his parents screaming at each other. He acted out  their behavior. The school contacted his mom and dad.

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You Can Create a Happier Marriage!

Even though their son yelled at, hit, and hurt other kids on the playground, his dad said, "Boys will be boys!" This his sister started causing similar problems at school. Finally, the parents paid attention. That's when the school contacted me.

The kids did what they saw the parents do. Yet deep inside, they feared their folks would divorce.

If fighting is hurting your marital relationship and your kids are being affected, you CAN change. In today's brief blog video, you'll find 3 miserable marriage traps, 3 questions to ask yourself about each trap, and 3 ways to overcome the trap. You'll also find 4 helpful communication tips for couples.

Watch the video as often as you want. You can even download the script below the video to use the information when you need it.

Go YouTube to watch How Fighting Parents Help Kids Feel Secure

or watch it here:


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Invest in your marriage and pick up:

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Solid advice from long-time lovers

5 marriage traps you must escape

1 marriage formula all lovers need

89 low-cost dates for busy parents      

Dating coupons to cut and choose   

21  dating tips to start using now 

You CAN have a happy marriage, secure children, and  a bright future. 


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Please let me know. Thank you so much.

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Jean Tracy, MSS


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Parents in Love: How to Discover Your Needs with the Right Questions!

Couples Can Get Their Needs Met!


If you're a parent and want to get your needs met in your relationship, our marriage and couple author and expert, Dr. Jackie Black ,will show you how. Now you can keep your commitment and be happier too. Let's listen to her advice with an excerpt from her book, Love Like a Black Belt: Cracking the Code to Being a Happy Couple.

Parents, Discover Your Needs with Answers to These Questions:

Here are a few things to think about that might help you understand the concept of personal needs and values from another viewpoint. You might find it helpful to take a sheet of paper and pencil out and jot down your responses to the questions in this section. 

Do you have a need for intimacy? For achievement? For results? For companionship?

Reflect on your own needs-do you know what they are? Remember, this is something you are doing for yourself, so be honest! When a need gets met you may feel soothed, relieved, excited, accepted, loved, understood, valued or energized. When a need is not met you may feel upset, angry, disappointed, frustrated, alienated or rejected.

. Can you think of a need (or two) that is being met right now or that has been met in the past?

. How do you feel when a need of yours gets met? Can you recall how you felt when one of your needs was not met?

. Did you notice that your needs are requirements of something or someone to change or be different, to be better or be more?

. Did you notice any concerns or beliefs that there isn't anyone in your life who is able or willing to meet your needs? Think about what you noticed and how it made you feel.

If you have trouble identifying your needs, it is an indication you may not be fully aware of your needs.

You may not believe that it is okay for you to have needs. You may be ashamed of having needs and sometimes even not allow yourself to have needs. Or you may have denied that you have needs for so long that a part of you isn't letting you know.

Whatever your "good" reason, don't worry, I can assure you that identifying your needs, become aware of how your needs can be met, and having them met, is a very do-able process! (from pages 8-9)

To discover your values go to page 9-13. Jackie's information is priceless!


I admire Dr. Jackie for providing the right questions to help us get our needs met in our relationships. If you purchase her book, you'll learn how to become a happier person in a better relationship.

Pick up Love Like a Black Belt: Cracking the Code to Being a Happy Couple

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Available on


Let's THANK Dr. Jackie for helping us discover our needs with the right questions.

Author Dr. Jackie

Dr. Jackie Black


Please support today's author and share your opinions about this blog post. Just click on the COMMENTS link below. It will open up for you. We want to hear from you.

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With warm wishes,

Jean Tracy, MSS

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Parenting Interview ~ Helping Cinderella Daughters Choose Brains Over Bimbos

Does your daughter put excessive value on her looks? Is she depressed because she's not gorgeous? How can you build character in your daughter with better values? Read how my friend and colleague, Claire Hatch, a Marriage Counseling Expert, helps her step-daughter choose brains over bimbos.

Jean: Claire, I've been reading Peggy Orenstein's book, Cinderella Ate My Daughter. In it she expresses concern about girls putting too much value on their looks. Your 15-year-old teenager  has a 3.7 GPA and, although she takes care of her looks, she's not excessive. How did you get her to value brains over bimbos?

Claire: Her father, mother, and I have planted seeds about school and career.

Jean: Do you have some examples for our readers?

Claire: Sure. We make sure she understands:

1. College graduates usually make more money and have more choices about how to live their lives than high school graduates.

2. Kids that drop out of high school tend to be poor.

3. We tell her, "You have such expensive tastes. You'll need a really good job to pay for them."           

4. We also do use a lot of "carrots" and they're not all about money. We have told her, "You'll learn about things in the world that might interest you that you would never have heard of without college. You'll have a more interesting life. You'll meet interesting people, maybe even lifelong friends."

 Jean: Sounds like you're giving her a choice between a negative and positive vision.

Claire: Exactly! We also try to model helping others. When she was little she didn't understand my job as a counselor, so I told her, "I help people."

Jean: Have you seen any results?

Claire: Yes. She is very kind to her friends. She also volunteered to assist a kindergarten teacher near her high school.

Jean: What other ideas would you like to tell parents?

Claire: Find out what motivates your kids. I asked my step- daughter why she likes to get good grades.

Jean: What did she say?

Claire: "Rewards!"

Jean: What did she mean?

Claire: Good grades give her rewards like when her teachers tell other kids to go to my her for help when they don't understand a concept. I think you'd say her reward is prestige. She's also very competitive and won't let herself fall behind in class.

Jean: Is there any other advice you'd like to share with parents?

Claire: Yes. Take your child's ideas seriously. Be sincere and be a good role model too.

I left Claire thinking how simple and effectively she, her husband, and her step-daughter 's mother are teaching values that last. They're building character too.

You can read Claire's expert articles at her website  Sign up for Claire's Rock Solid eNewsletter too.

What do you think?

Here's a link to how little girls look in beauty pagents.

 Please comment in the comment link below. Don't forget to add your email so I can separately email you 10 Beautifully Crafted Love Notes for Your Kids.

With warm wishes,

Jean Tracy, MSS

Two More Things:

Sign up for this Parenting Skills Blog at  and receive this FREE Gift - 33 Expert Ways to Motivate Your Kids

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2 Parenting Tips for Building Character and Childhood Responsibility

Parents, life can be tough if your kids aren't responsible. Do you know parents who let their kids play before their chores? Many parents do and then wonder why their kids won't do their chores. Look inside for 2 statements that can turn things around if they're said often and used consistently.

2 Parenting Tips that Build Character and Childhood Responsibility

1.  "Work before play." This daily refrain like a popular melody must be implanted in kids' brains. When kids consistently work before play, they become responsible children.

2.  "First this, then that." Repeat this similar refrain when kids want to shirk their chores, homework, or practices like sports and music lessons.

Samples of both:

1. Do your work before you play with your friends.

2. First practice your guitar then you may watch TV.

One Reason Why Building Character and Childhood Responsibility Is Important

Not long ago I met Officer Stratton. He hoped parents wouldn't be fooled into raising self-indulgent, lazy kids with weak characters. Officer Strutton had worked in a state prison system. He told me, "The number one trait of inmates was laziness. It's what got them there in the first place."

Parents, the above 2 parenting tips can prevent laziness if you're consistent in repeating and following through with them. Use them to build self-discipline, character, and childhood responsibility. They're easy to say and easy to use.

One more thing, you are your child's best teacher.

Do you agree with Officer Stratton? Please comment in the link below.

With warm wishes,

Jean Tracy, MSS

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Motivation: How This Mother Uses Stories to Motivate Her Kids

Motivation through stories gives your child a jewel to deposit in his memory bank with every story. When he remembers the story he remembers the moral. This moral could help him make good choices throughout his lifetime.

A Motivation Problem:

One mother's son is 9-years-old. He is well liked by all because he's sensitive to others. Yet he sets himself up for disappointment because he expects to succeed with his first effort. His mother is worried.

I think Lora has a solution that this mother might try. You can use it too.

I often use stories of famous people or heroes who overcame obstacles to show that not everyone, in fact no one, gets everything on the first (or second or third) try. The important thing is to keep trying. - from Lora

This reminds me of a character building chart I'm using with a child who's

 learning to read.

He'd like to get everything correct on the first try too. To keep him motivated I

 try 4 things:  

1. His character building chart has this goal at the top: I Keep Trying

 2. Every time he sincerely tries a reading activity he receives a star for his chart.

 3. I change activities often so he won't feel bored.

 4. Like Lora, I use stories before we even start a session.

 For instance, I told him the story of Thomas Alva Edison, the inventor of the light bulb. He

 didn't invent the light bulb on the first try. In fact, Mr. Edison said he knew a thousand ways

 not to invent a light bulb. He never gave up.

So far my young student has 18 stars. He counts them with pride every time he

 adds another star.

If you'd like stories with good morals to motivate your kids, check out these

Short Stories.

To get a ready-made character building chart, pick up my Character Building Kit  and

 watch your child keep on trying.

What do you think of Lora's use of stories to motivate kids?

Why? Please add your comments in the comment link below.

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Motivation: How This Mom Becomes Her Kids Goal Setting Cheerleader

Your child's motivation may need a boost when she wants to give up. Find out this mom's strategy when her children are discouraged.

I acknowledge how they feel - that they might be discouraged, tired, disappointed, afraid - and remind them that everyone feels that way from time to time. Then I talk about what it will be like when they reach their goal. What it will look like, how they will feel, how others will react (kiddy visualization). Then with me right by their side cheering them on just give them some version of "GO FOR IT". - from Lora B.

I like how Lora starts with kids feelings. Acknowledging those feelings helps kids feel understood. It can motivate too. She also uses visualization to help her kids see and feel the positive picture to strive for. 

Motivation and Goal Setting for Kids Using Visualization:

  1. Ask, how will it look when you reach your goal?
  2. Ask, how will you feel when you reach your goal?
  3. Ask, what can you tell yourself to help reach your goal?

Parents, when your kids can see, feel, and say positive self-talk all in the same moment, their goals will be within reach.

I did this with my son, Brian, when he was 10-years-old. The baseball coach told Brian he would pitch in the next game. Brian had never pitched before. We sat down and did what Lora suggested. Brian saw, felt, and used positive self-talk.

He struck all the batters out. It was amazing. Like Lora I was his biggest cheerleader. 

One more thing, this was his self-talk sentence: "I am pitching powerfully into the catcher's mitt." And he did.

If you'd like my visualization kit for kids go to Goal Setting Pyramid Then watch your child succeed.

Do you agree or disagree with Lora about visualizing and cheerleading? Why? Please post your comments in the link below.


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Motivation: How This Grandmother Keeps Grandchildren Motivated

Motivation for pre-schoolers can be difficult. If you have very young children you know their attention spans are short. So how can they learn? Find out what this grandmother does.

For my grandsons, age 3, and 5. I have to keep them moving from one activity to a new one often. I can see when they are losing their focus. Then I stop what we are doing and move to the next.

They like water balloons here in AZ a lot while it is hot outside. Inside they love water paints. - from Annie

Parents, when I taught first grade years ago, I knew the kids needed a change because the wiggles and noise increased. I did what Annie does and changed the activity. I got them out of their seats. Then we'd sing and exercise with silly gestures. As soon as they sat down, I'd teach them something new because their young minds were rested and ready.

(Of course, the first thing I did once I reached home was take a nap until dinner time. You need lot's of energy with little kids.)

What Parents Need to Motivate Young Kids

Like Annie we need to have a number of activities ready, like drawing, painting, puzzles, building toys, and especially colorful children's books. At home it works well when your children pick the next activity from what you set out.

You can also teach them to clean up after each activity. This helps keep toys organized for the next time you need them.

Do you agree with Annie's motivation tip? Why? Please post your comments in the link below.

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Motivation: How This Mother Is a Champion at Motivating Kids

Motivation is difficult when kids say, "It's too hard." It can be discouraging when kids won't try. So how do you get kids to keep trying? Here's what my friend Darla advises:


Hey Jean, My personal experience as a parent and teacher is that kids are best motivated by previous successes. My advice is to be realistic with your kids; set the hurdle low, show them how to clear it, and then let them clear it. The next thing you know they will be raising the hurdle for themselves. Anybody can clear any hurdle as long as it is low enough. Choose a beginning height that you know your child can clear.


Did you notice that Darla, as mother and teacher, starts kids with tasks she knows they will achieve?


She sets the hurdle low.

She shows kids how to clear it.

She lets them clear it.


She says kids will be raising the hurdle for themselves.


Her motto could be: "Anybody can clear a hurdle if it is low enough." 



I like Darla's hurdle metaphor. The picture of raising the bar is great for kids. It makes use of their imagination and energy.


Motivation and What Parents Can Do To Help Kids


As parents, let's start where we know our kids can be successful. This gives them the taste of success and encourages them to try the next hurdle as long as it is just a little higher but low enough for them to clear the hurdle. Why? Because success builds on success.


One more thing, did you guess that Darla is a true athlete at hurdles? She's won many championships.


What do you think of Darla's motivation tips? How do you motivate your kids? Please post your comments in the link below.



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