Feb 22, 2024
Parenting. One of the most rewarding AND hardest jobs of our lives. All the do’s and don'ts of every age and stage can make your head spin.
Tiffany welcomes psychotherapist, parent coach and author, Michelle Gambs, onto the podcast for an in-depth and revealing perspective on parenting. Her book, Stay Away from Option D, is based on her simple philosophy that gives parents permission to be faulty parents while still bringing peace into their home. Tiffany admits that Michelle’s candid guidance gave her pause and interrupted some of her own parenting patterns, and wanted to share this guidance with everyone who is searching out a plan for confident, empowered parenting…with no guilt!
Educated at the University of Notre Dame, Michelle has hosted the podcast ParentED, created YouTube tips for parents, and coaches parents in person and online with a virtual course. She can typically be found near water or on a yoga mat, and also at michellegambs.com.
So, grab a cup of coffee and listen in on this incredible conversation, and be ready to gain a whole new perspective on peaceful parenting!
To learn more about Michelle, visit her website
Michelle’s book, Stay Away from Option D
Learn about or register for her online course
Check out her workshop bundles
Follow her on YouTube,
Follow her on Facebook and Instagram @michellegambs
[03:56] Michelle's book, 'Stay Away From Option D'
[04:25] Options A, B C and D
[07:56] Feeling of guilt
[10:17] Advice for different stages of parenting
[13:23] Proactive parenting
[13:50] Quality over quantity
[23:32] Override the instinct to always protect your kids
[24:59] How do we prevent our kids from being spoiled and entitled
[27:25] Kids' allowances and money management
[34:30] Family meetings
[37:25] Raising capable kids
[48:46] More about teenagers
[51:04] Dispassionate cop
[52:35] Punishment vs. consequence
[1:00:00] Michelle's access points
[1:01:21] Michelle shares an amazing connection to the meaning of Scared Confident
Tiffany Sauder: Michelle Gambs. Oh my word. What an incredible interview we had. so Michelle is a parent coach, a psychotherapist. She has a degree from Notre Dame and has spent 20 years coaching parents. She's a parent coach. I was like, what does that even mean and she wrote a book called stay away from option D and it gives permission for parents to like not have to be perfect, but bringing peace into your home. And so I heard about Michelle from some business colleagues that had used her, to help them through some parenting challenges.
And Like from some people I really respect just like you've got to talk to Michelle and I was like, okay Let's see how this goes. and I'm telling you this is one of the most powerful conversations I've had it was such a pattern interrupt for my thinking I kind of think i'm actually like a pretty good mom I don't know I generally start from a place of confidence in like anything in my life. But Michelle just had some frameworks that have been so, so helpful for me. In particular, we talked about the difference between a punish and a consequence, a punishment and a consequence, like punishing your kid versus giving them a consequence. And. I do this, I am not afraid of making sure that there is some like discipline in our home.
I'm very comfortable with that. I'm very comfortable with idea. but she talked about how a consequence is, it's reasonable. It's related to what happened and it's respectful to the kid. And especially with Quincy, I am just in a phase, she's three, she's so Frustrating because she is such so independently minded, which I know she gets from me, but it's very annoying to me, because I want her to be obedient. so as I've tried to put like this framework on how I'm parenting Quincy in particular of like, how do I create a consequence for her instead of just punishing her with time out or punishing her with like time away, whatever, or a spanking. Dare I say sometimes, um, just like how do I turn that into a related consequence? And it has been such a powerful framework. So this conversation was Michelle, one of my top three for sure in the almost three years of doing this podcast. And I know you're going to get something valuable out of it. As you're thinking about parenting, your teenagers, parenting, your littles, um, it's a crazy game. This figuring out how to be. Apparent. So anyway, uh, please listen to this conversation, Michelle. It was incredible.
So we're just pre chatting here and Michelle says, I'm low maintenance. I don't even do mulch.
And I'm like, tell me more. Is this a choice or is this just who you
Michelle Gambs: are? No, it's a, yeah, it's who I am.
Tiffany Sauder: But has it always been who you are? Yes.
Michelle Gambs: It always has. I just, I, I, I have always lived this book. Which is the good enough, like this is good enough, you know, like I'm not, I'm just, it's just good enough. And we exist in good enough parenting, which is be stay away from option D B is good enough parenting. Well, what's option
Tiffany Sauder: a, I haven't, she just, she brought me a copy of her book. I have not read her book. I've listened to your podcast that you did. Yeah. I don't know, maybe a couple of years ago. You're not doing it right now, but we'll share it. Cause people should go listen to it. It's really good. But what's option a, B, C and D tell me.
Michelle Gambs: Okay. Stay away from option D option. D is harm. Like, yelling at, shaming, spanking your kids, humiliating, that's harm. And so, it's to give parents a range, A through D, just stay away from D and you're doing a great job. A is textbook, best case scenario, ideal, 10 out of 10. That's not realistic. people expect that of themselves, though. the whole do your best thing. Do you get dressed your best every day? Do you make your best meal? Do you communicate your best? No, no. We live in good enough, which is B. You know, like B is good enough. Parenting good enough, like good enough, period, which is the mulch thing. No mulch. It's good enough. It doesn't have to be perfect. That's excellent. It doesn't have to be perfect, man. And then C is do no harm. C is shut the hell up and walk away because you're going to do D and it's way better to do C, which is, breathe, count, Go outside, whatever you need to do. You know, and I like, um, reminding myself and every client I have is I'm a hundred percent responsible for what I say and what I do. You're a hundred percent responsible for what you say and what you do. So, if you yell at me, that's on you. If I yell back at you, that's on me. You hit me, that's on you. I hit you back, that's on me. So that's what I expect out of children as well. Like, people can do whatever they want. You're in charge of yourself. So anyway, that's how I get the range is like, there is no perfect, but give yourself the range and you're, you're doing great. You're doing great. So
Tiffany Sauder: you have like, this is amazing. You have internalized this to a place where it's like, this is like literally my worldview and everything is good enough. Good enough is how we're going to do
Michelle Gambs: this. Well, yeah. And sometimes when you have the resources and the patience and the ability and the knowledge you'll do a, and sometimes you're like rocking it, man today, but that is not realistic to exist in that. This is not. so the do no harm thing, like, okay, one of the first quotes in the book, is the Dalai Lama, there's a story about the Dalai Lama, and he shuffles up, he's, you know, paid to come present. He shuffles up to the podium, and he stands up there and he says, love each other. And then he goes and sits back down. And everybody's like, we paid for this? And then he shuffles back up and he says, Well, if you can't do that, just don't harm each other. And that's what I'm talking about with children. Like we can't do our best all the time. Just don't harm them.
Tiffany Sauder: Well, I think in. You know, I, in a working parent context, It's just my worldview is as a working parent, we use this word guilt. Oh, a lot about like, I feel guilty for this or I feel guilty. I'm not present. I feel guilty. I'm not, you know, uh, present my bubble. I feel guilt. And at some level it's holding ourselves accountable for that gap that you're talking about, perhaps between what is my best every time, which is an unsustainable expectation to have ourselves and what is, What I can do. I don't know. How would you respond to that word or that feeling that I think Too often is at the tip of our tongue about how we describe ourselves and describe our interaction With our parenting
Michelle Gambs: experience. Girl, the minute you have a child you have guilt The minute does it have to
Tiffany Sauder: be a mandate though, to feel that way? No,
Michelle Gambs: I don't think so either. Okay. I agree with you. It doesn't, but it's, it's given the minute you have a child. That's what I want to normalize. Because it's the good enough thing. What is good enough? And that's what we have to define, what's good enough. Because there, that is that gap of what you're saying. If it's not perfect, or I didn't do it well, or I didn't, you know. No, no, no, no. That is not realistic. And so people, that's, that's why I think this is so effective because This is what people do to themselves. It has to be 10 out of 10 or I basically failed. Instead of, there's these two other options in the middle that are all great. And so that's the gap you're talking about. Like, because people think, oh okay, if I didn't do it great then I go to bed guilty. No. No, that was really good. So people walk in like after knowing it's like this so simple, and they're like, Michelle, I didn't do D. I didn't do D. I'm like, that's success. Like, you don't have to be guilty about any of it. It's like we're doing our human best. The
Tiffany Sauder: other thing I think I hear you saying is I have tried to decode this feeling of guilt because I want to say, Hey, it's a choice to feel guilty. How do I unchoose it for myself? But what do I do instead? Because I can't just feel nothing. Okay. And so I've started to interrogate when I feel guilty, it often means I have. a value that I violated. And I think this is maybe what you're saying is we go from option a, which is like, Hey, I'm behaving in the way that I imagine a sitcom parent showing up. Like, you know, it's scripted and I'm on my game and all this kind of stuff, or I lose my ever loving mind. And so I violated what you talked about, which is like kindness. I violated seeing my kids as, you know, people that I want to respect. And I've. I've maybe shredded those things and so that's why I'm feeling guilty. I don't know,
Michelle Gambs: does that? Yeah, yeah, because it's less than do you expect for yourself? we have to expect realistic things from ourselves, be realistic that you're human and you're going to have days that really are not, not, they're not shiny at all. And so are your kids. You're normalizing that and so we're normalizing being human and it's okay to be human for them and you. So I,
Tiffany Sauder: am in a, particular spot in my household where we have a high school, middle school, elementary and preschool. And so I feel like a rubber band, you know, like my freshman in high school is, you know, rightly wanting to exercise independence and decision making. And I want to encourage that. And then my three year old still very much needs protected from herself.And so I sometimes I think get like, holy crap, I'm digging into a lot of wells. Um, and I'm, you know, I'm, I'm newer at the freshman year, you know, than I am at the younger one. And so I don't know, what advice do you have for parents that are maybe in just a lot of different phases and stages, or maybe it's just think about how our job as parenting evolves as it is, you know, from a three year old up to 15 year old right now
Michelle Gambs: for me.Yeah. I think the most important part you said in there is the three year old, you kind of got it there, you kind of know what you're doing, this is your fourth time around there. There's confidence with that, which is part of your podcast name, you know, you have confidence in that. But when we're in new, it's unknown, it's uncharted waters, and every parent of a teenager is breathless, let me just tell you, they all are, everybody's breathless, including myself. But the reason we're breathless is because of a normal human need that they're doing, which is experimenting and exploring. Your three year old experiments and explores and like, you know, gets in mud and puddles and picks up sticks and cigarette butts and whatever she's doing. But the experimentation, the exploration for your freshman, life altering. Sex, drinking, alcohol. Um, driving boys, all of it and it's normal to experiment and explore,
And so all parents are breathless. So you have a range of skills that you're expected to utilize on the daily, which is kind of a big range girl, like that's a big range. And so I'm just, I'm over here kind of like, um, Impressed and, you know Mm-Hmm. that it's like, that's a lot to, to shift. Like, it's like, which gear am I in a little bit? Mm-Hmm. . Mm-Hmm. . Like, I'm gonna be the mother of a toddler. Wait a minute, wait a minute. I gotta shift over here because, you know, you said the 3-year-old needs to be saved from herself. So does the 14-year-old. Mm-Hmm. . She needs to be saved from herself too. Mm-Hmm. . Which is a different kind of saving, you
Tiffany Sauder: know? Yeah. My, it is totally my 14-year-old is, like the quintessential firstborn, I would say and I've talked to her about this. It was like, you're, the things that you struggle with are like perfectionism. It's not things that on the surface actually look that destructive, but they are in different ways.
You know what I mean? In different ways. she's not curious about drugs and stuff. Like I say right now, I hope never, but you know, whatever. Um, But it is figuring out how to be present for her in where it's like helping her mind form well.
And I think about this like reactive and proactive posture to life. Like you talk about your choice of being low maintenance is a proactive decision in every, I've already made this decision. I can export that choice in everything I do. It's pre made. And I think about proactive versus like reactive parenting.
Like some of it is, How do I have a crystal ball for her a bit of like, Hey, this is, I don't know everything you're experiencing in high school. I have been there before. And so how do we start thinking through some of these scenarios so that proactively I have a shot to like inform her behavior and decision making versus it always being reactive, which is oftentimes we most react when it's negative.
Like, why did you do this? Help me understand. Like, did you not see any other options? And so it feels more. Like she's in trouble or shamey versus like, you know, even celebrating what she did. Right. So Is there any such thing as like proactive parenting or as a therapist? How do you frame that? How do we think about that? I feel like it's a theme I'm seeing But I don't totally know how to wrap my head well around it.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah Okay, girl, you're asking great questions. You are. So, um, I have so many things to talk about.
Tiffany Sauder: Yeah,
Michelle Gambs: just go. Just even over the things you said before, like with the guilt too. so the guilt part too, I just want to address that. I want to tell all parents it's with your kids. It's about quality over quantity, especially working parents. And I know that's your focus. let go of the guilt It's being present in a quality way. It's not about a quantity way. There are people who stay at home with their children who have less quality time than people who work outside of the home. So I just wanted to say that to quality. And you see that
Tiffany Sauder: play out in your, in your patients
Michelle Gambs: and people. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's the letting go and knowing like, okay, I need to be, fully present. For the two minutes, five minutes, 10 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, whatever it is with this child or person, um, is more important than the quantity of time I'm spending. Okay. Okay. So I just want that.
Tiffany Sauder: I want to, I want
Michelle Gambs: to claim that as a truth. No, it's real. It's real. I will claim
Tiffany Sauder: that as
Michelle Gambs: truth.
Good girl. Yeah. Yeah. Because I, you know, as your kid, I wanted to share this thing with you, your 14 year old or three year old and to know that you're fully present and that you, you hear me and we get this and then I'm off. I don't need you anymore. I'm good. I've
Tiffany Sauder: heard something recently that said, you cannot experience love without attention, but you can never tell someone you love them and show them attention and they will feel love, which is what you're saying.
And it was convicting because we can be. We, we can say we're present, but our physical body is, our mind is not, our attention is not. Absolutely.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. Attention equals love in regards to your children. That's why they're trying to get it when you're on the phone or talking to your partner or in even getting out of bed is all those times are inappropriate attention.
They're trying to get attention, which equals love to them. And so, yes, I agree with you. Okay. Attention equals love. So,
Tiffany Sauder: is a kid who has full attention and filled with love not begging for your time? Mm hmm. Really?
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. Oh, no. Less willing. They're less, less willing to do that I liken it to, if you think Tiffany about like a, each of your four girls has like an invisible love cup and they're looking around to like, who's going to put something in here and some of them may sip on what's in there for a long time.
And some it's like the big gulp and I'm back. Yeah. I think I got a couple of big gulps. Yeah. Yeah. So, so that this, this, you know. But there just needs to be something in there, put in there. That's all.
Okay. So back to your teenager. And I can, be a fire hose about teenage one Oh one. I mean, I really, I literally give talks on teenagers.
So, but, the first piece about her is she's the firstborn and firstborns tend to be perfectionistic, high achieving, highly responsible, need to be right, perfect and superior. Okay. So with our firstborns, we want to give them permission to fail. Make mistakes. You're loved. You are loved, honey.
Like, yeah, way to go on that. You know, like my daughter in 8th grade, she failed this quiz and she came home with this quiz her first week of 8th grade and I gave her a high five. I'm like, way to go. You got that out early. You know, whatever. She goes, Mom, you're the only parent that would say that. And I go, well, you know, like I said, clearly you feel bad about it.
You want to go talk to him? She didn't do the back of it. She didn't know there was a back. And I was like, okay, whatever. But it was like, she already feels bad enough herself because she's a firstborn. Like she puts that pressure on herself. And then sometimes it's, it's co it's overtly put there by parents, either it's covertly felt or overtly, you know, like you've got these other sisters, you got to get it right.
You know? And it's like, they don't deserve that pressure. Whenever, a client is talking to me. And they are a firstborn or their child is a firstborn that we're discussing. I literally have an asterisk in my head about them because it's the hardest. My
Tiffany Sauder: husband and I are both firstborn. Oh, it's hard. I was like, do you put two asterisks for that?
No, it's intense. Oh,
Michelle Gambs: it is. No, it is. Yeah, it's no, that is. So it's like, well, we're talking about you guys and giving you permission to like. Not have to do A all the time.
Tiffany Sauder: Yeah, because I will tell her, Honey, you've got to just chill out. But she never sees us model that. If I'm honest with myself. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
We are so excellence oriented in our own behavior and our drive and Yeah, which
Michelle Gambs: is lovely. And what we're trying to do, which is
Tiffany Sauder: lovely. She says to me,
Michelle Gambs: I mean, in a dosage, we're talking about dosage, you know, it is lovely and we need to normalize mistakes. And it's best for you to do that, you know, to even say, normalize mistakes.
Like, you know, I messed up and this is what I'm doing to repair it. Like repairs is a term that I, I, I want all families to have. I just have to, I repair that. I messed this up. I was late. So I did this. Or, you know, like I hit my brother so now I gave him one of my favorite toys or it got his blankie or whatever, you know, because I messed up and we're normalizing messing up and make mistakes.
I mean, this three year old doesn't need that permission. She's probably got it in spades. It's like risk, more risk taking, more ability to like, it doesn't matter. But the first born is like uptight, more rigid, usually, usually. And if they didn't take that role, the second one did.
Usually in a family. I'm second, but I have all the firstborn traits because my sister was always in trouble. Okay, yeah. So it's not always the biological. But anyway, so your firstborn girl, I had that as well. And I was literally telling her, you need to get kissed before you leave high school. And you do need to go to the party.
Like, like, like, we need to loosen up. And the reason is, she needs to do those things while she's in my house. Before she goes off to live elsewhere. And then begin the experimentation and exploration. No, I need that to happen while you're here. So you have these experiences. Because you're going to have them.
It's just when, so while that can be like, you know, parents think, oh, it's idea, this kid doesn't cause me any problems. I'm like, we need to loosen them up, people. Because they need to give permission. That they, they think they're only loved if they do everything right. That's the bottom line. Totally, and I want her
Tiffany Sauder: actually to have discernment.
In discomfort, which is not that she never puts herself in situations where she could fail or be wrong or be taken off guard or be surprised like any of those kinds of things. And I'm a firstborn but a risk taker by nature and I'm like, I need you to have discernment and uncertainty. All of us can make good choices in perfect conditions.
That is, that is not a test. You're a smart woman. A contrived reality. And so how do I get her to make good choices when things went way different than she expected and I don't have that confidence yet just because I think she'd more freeze.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. It's a normal, it's a normal trait of firstborns.
And even giving her all this information would help her know herself. Oh yeah. I've talked to her about that. Good. Good. Yeah. Yeah. So we need to help you loosen up. We need to help you give yourself permission. We need to help you like make mistakes that normalize that and know that we love you. I haven't said that, but I do do this.
Yeah. Yeah. Oh, one of my favorite lines. I mean for children to hear there is no mistake greater than my love for you. you know, if you wonder watch court TV and the most heinous defendant is sitting there and who's sitting behind them and their mom.
That's right. There is no, they don't believe that though. Tiffany, they believe you only love me if I do everything right. If I don't disappoint you, they need to know it over and over and over. There's no mistake that you can make that's greater than my love for you. I'm gonna love you. All teenagers, by the way, are going to do their own amount of stupid things.
Okay? All of them. It's a matter of dose. It's how much they're gonna do. And when my son did his most stupid thing at 17, that's when he found out was loved by me.
Tiffany Sauder: How did you show up in a way that that demonstrated that, but also reflected the severity of what
Michelle Gambs: was happening? Yeah.
my response versus my reaction. Because responses have thought, reactions have none. And I knew enough that I'm not going to react right now. I'm going to be very calm. And, um, you're going to get in the car and we're not going to talk about this tonight because I'm going to lose my shit right now.
And I knew that. And so, um, and he was calm. and it was allowing consequences to happen for him. and then, um, me being able to tell him. That I love him. And yeah, he's really got to face all the consequences of what he did, you know,
Tiffany Sauder: you let the consequences
Michelle Gambs: be.
Yeah, absolutely. They're needed because that's the learning. Rescuing our kids is a bad idea. Y'all bad idea.
Tiffany Sauder: It can be a reflex though under this guise of I want the best for my kids. I grew up in a. Town of 1, 200 people on a farm with a dad who let me drive to Chicago when I was 16 Yeah, and it was like, you know how to read don't you was his I'm like, dude He's trying to do this.
He's like you can read I was like, okay, I guess so. I'll be I'll be back It was like before cell phones. Yes. I grew up in a very high risk environment as it relates to like Physically we were pushed. I drove, like, equipment when I was, like, young and we, yeah, all that kind of stuff. So, this environment that I'm in now, which is a city and private schools and all this kind of madness.
I say madness. It's amazing. Yeah. Um, but it's a different environment than I grew
Michelle Gambs: up in. Yeah. It's a very controlled environment.
Tiffany Sauder: Yes, it is. But it's difficult not to have that be your kids existence. Because there is safety in everything. I mean, I love that there's an officer that we walk by before we go into school, but even that, like, the doors lock, where they can go, how long they can stay out in the playground, you know, they can't walk home alone, like all these kinds of things, it's like very difficult not to create that environment.
Michelle Gambs: we're instinctually wired, Tiffany, to protect our kids. It's instinctual in you, mother bear. And we have to override that instinct in order to help our children grow. We must override it. I'll tell you benign, sort of innocent ways. it's like, um, your kid is forgetting their homework.
They're forgetting their lunch. They're forgetting their whatever at home. You do not take that stuff to them. You allow them to fail. You allow them to feel that consequence of, Oh, I don't have it. Because if they miss that moment, they don't change their behavior. I got somebody who's going to bring it to me.
It's no problem. They need to feel that discomfort. They need to feel that to change their behavior. So then it's, well, what, I wonder what you'll do with it tomorrow. You know, I wonder how you'll remember tomorrow or where you'll put your stuff or you know, it's like you're, you're allowing them to solve that problem and not saving them.
And I understand what you're saying. I, we all are wired to do so, so it's, where's the line, but we need them to feel all the feelings of disappointment, frustration, loss, all of it before they leave us. So they're okay with themselves when they fail, when they mess up, when they are disappointed and they're like, I'll figure it out.
I'll figure it out. That's grit. Mm hmm. And we need grit. And in order to give grit, and I know we're here interviewing in Carmel, Indiana, you know, but in order to give grit, you gotta stop doing everything for your kids. You stop giving them everything. Because if they have everything, they're very comfortable.
Tiffany Sauder: it's easier. I wrote, my number one question is, that I hear from people too, it's like, how do I make sure my kids don't grow up spoiled and entitled? Oh, gosh. This is like, I think the prevailing. Yes. To me, it kind of is the center of the fear in this two career home that we have.
There's a lot of financial resources as a result of the choices my husband and I have made. And there are things that we have in our house that make it so that it's easier for me. So that I have capacity for them and I have time to go to the sporting events and I can leave, you know. And so I, but I I think as we find ourselves in these spaces where there's privilege that most of us didn't grow up with, how do I make sure they're not spoiled and entitled?
Michelle Gambs: Every American child is indulged. Let me start there. Every American child. Like, it doesn't matter. We all have way too much stuff, so in order to begin that journey, there has to be a distinction in your home, in the language with children, difference between wants and needs.
Because, and let me, let me break that down. So it's as simple as discussing wants and needs. So to explain to your children that, Dad and I, or parents, whoever we are, are going to provide. What you need and what you need is food, clothes, and this house. Those are needs. You need a house, you need clothes, and you need food.
you know, those are the physical stuff. okay, so we're gonna give you those wants are things that you will not be getting everything you want. And so I need the child to begin speaking in those terms as well. Is this a want or a need?
Because, you know, when I have teenagers in my office with parents, I, I, I literally will tell them, like, okay, let me, let me help you here. Um, a phone, um, braces, a car, those are all wants. Those are all privileges. They are not needs. These are not things that are entitled, you're entitled to. Your parents are required to do these things for you.
Those are not. Needs they are wants Starbucks all this stuff it's like they don't have a clue though Because if they grow up thinking no, I need this. Mm hmm. I need this. Look everybody is I need this No, you don't No, this is not a need. and when they can begin to make that discernment themselves, then they begin to have different gratitude and they begin to make different decisions.
So it's like kids need allowances and not for doing anything. They need allowances to learn money management because then they learn to budget. The easiest money to spend is the governance money. Second easiest is your parents money. And then. Yours, you make completely different decisions when it's yours.
So you give them a budget and then it's a completely different sense of value for them. what they're willing to spend their money on versus your money.
Tiffany Sauder: I did that this last summer. Because I was feeling like a 35 vending machine for everything. And they weren't like, on the face value, unreasonable.
But it was like, am I picking which friends you're gonna get birthday gifts for? I say yes to one and no to another. Like I feels inconsistent. I can't do that. But like we have like 84 friends we're buying birthday presents for. This is insanity. I don't even want you to get 85 presents at your birthday.
Like this is insane. Um, and so I did that. I set up Greenlight, which has been awesome. And so all that stuff is in the girls and they manage it so much differently. It's amazing. Do you know Greenlight? Um, It's, uh, they have a both a debit card that if they're over 14 can be connected to their Apple pay.
And then there's an app that they have, That I can send money directly to it from my bank account. And they have, they can have savings goals, they can have like giving, like tithe, and then spending. And I can allocate the money into those buckets if I want to. Like to say, hey, this has to go to spend and you can't move it.
Um, But I get notified every time there's a transaction, um, I can put jobs in there and assign a value to them and then they can check it off and then I get notified. And then if the job is done well, then I can pay him for it. I can set up a recurring allowance. Um, but it's awesome. That's cool.
I really, really like it. So,
Michelle Gambs: um, I may be a different. Approach than green light in this one way is that I don't, I don't, I'm not supportive of children getting paid for jobs. And the reason is it creates a what's in it for me mentality instead of, no, you live here and you're part of this team and we all contribute to that.
They need allowances to learn the skill of money management. It's a life skill. They need to know what it feels like to have it, save it, spend it, blow it on plastic fantastics, you know, and the, the achievement of a goal. They, that's a life skill, the wants and needs kind of thing. So my jobs
Tiffany Sauder: are not like unload the dishwasher.
It's like, hey, my closet needs dusted. That's not your space. I see. I would pay my cleaner to do it. Does that make sense? Like if you would like to do it because you want more money, then you have an optional. Or like But like if they're going to clean my car, if they're going to unload the dishwasher, that is, and I don't want to manage a chore chart.
Like we're a team. If you have a lot of tests this week, I'm not going to be up your butt. If practice got canceled, you can help me. I want that to be flexible flow. Good. That's great. do you think of that discernment differently? Like, Hey, these are not your space.
These are not your job.
Michelle Gambs: Yes. Yeah. I'd give my neighbors money to pay my kids, pick up their sticks. I want Mm-Hmm. You give your neighbors
Tiffany Sauder: money to pay your kids. Mm-Hmm. Yeah. Oh, you are
Michelle Gambs: awesome. Yeah. 'cause I'm like, I don't want too money coming from me about that.
That's amazing. Like, I'm, I'm gonna give you an allowance. I'm gonna give you an allowance 'cause I want you to learn money management. Mm-Hmm. , when did you start for your kids at age five? That's when you. You can start because they understand money has power at age five.
Before that, it's just pretty paper. But at
Tiffany Sauder: five, I think that's younger than most people would guess. Yeah,
Michelle Gambs: no, they know it has power at five and it becomes transactional. And it's the first step for them is, do I have enough for this thing? Like that's all they're trying to do at age five. It's just transactional.
And then beyond that was I was trying to teach. Is it a good value for you or not? Not just do you have enough? Is it a good value for you or not? That's discernment. When it's their choice and their money, which I don't influence. I just, it was just not candy, not candy.
Otherwise it's all yours.
Tiffany Sauder: That was your one rule. Yeah. You can't buy candy. No, we're not doing that.
Michelle Gambs: That's not, but otherwise, you know, cause you can think it's a bad idea. It's not my, it's not my totally. Yeah. And feeling
Tiffany Sauder: broke is actually important.
Michelle Gambs: Yes, it is. That's, we need them to feel all of those things.
Oh my word.
Tiffany Sauder: I'm so inspired. I think we can get so lazy in this. Yes. Oh, yes. I don't think we can get so lazy in this. I am lazy in this. Go on. you just get so busy and you think, oh, they're picking it up by osmosis. My parents were so diligent. I bet I was in seventh grade and they put us on a cash budget and it was, I would say, um, more by necessity in my household at the time.
Where we had money for like, going to basketball games, we had cash for clothes, and it was like, this is all I had, and there was no more. And I remember, yeah, running out. buying a 60 sweatshirt when I really should have bought like three 20 shirts and like, I didn't have enough shirts to wear. Totally. And I just look at myself and I'm like that discomfort of looking at my kids disappointment of like, I only have three shirts to wear.
I'm a like wimp.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. Yeah. Oh, yeah, girl. our job is to be firm and kind. Yeah. That's it. Firm and kind. I can't
Tiffany Sauder: say it with a very thoughtful smile. I
Michelle Gambs: do. I'm firm and kind because I'm meant to be firm and kind as a parent. I can't wait to be a grandparent where I just get to be kind. I don't have to teach them anything.
But these kids of ours, we got to groom a whole bunch in them. We are not their friends. They get two shots at a parent, you're it.
Tiffany Sauder: is this all, all this acute to you because you, obviously you've learned it through what you've studied. Yes. But what was your own childhood experience?
Michelle Gambs: I had a similar one to you.
Okay. I grew up on 45 acres in the country and I drove all kinds of things and I felt very capable because of that. Interesting. Yeah. And I used to say I'm a recovering Catholic. I'm, I'm recovered. My whole education was Catholic. Okay. But I'm no longer in that space. You've worked that. I worked through all that.
Tiffany Sauder: So you always felt, a sense of, yeah, I have purpose and well,
Michelle Gambs: yeah. And I learned the value of money through that. it was unusual childhood that I had. I grew up in the country, but I went to school in the city.
Yeah. So I had this, two worlds. Um, but I, it was a very cash based growing up as well and I worked and so I knew the value of money. Like it wasn't this indulged space like that. Like it is now.
Tiffany Sauder: Yeah. I worked from very young. We worked in the fields. I worked all through college. My parents paid for school, but nothing else.
That's right. And so I had to pay for my car and ride the public transit to the mall to work, like. Yeah, good for you. It was horrid. Yes,
Michelle Gambs: yes. I hated it. Yes. Yes. But you were, ambitious and you had grit and you were willing, which is great.
Tiffany Sauder: Yeah. And the, and like, I think my dad was so willing to put us in uncomfortable situations.
That I almost am attracted to it now.
Michelle Gambs: Well, it's familiar and normal to you. Yeah, that's true. Yeah, so we're drawn to that, which is familiar.
Tiffany Sauder: um, okay, is there anything on your papers that you feel like we should talk about?
Michelle Gambs: Okay, well, um, people don't realize that family meetings are the best.
like our family meetings used to be Sunday afternoons, like you make it the same time every week. Okay. So you have a family meeting, And then kids can put things on the agenda that they want to talk about. Like you put it up somewhere.
Okay. and we want it to be brief, not this like basically bitch session, because nobody's going to want to come to the family meeting then, you know? So it starts out simple, it can be just like the schedule for the week.
Here's what's happening, you know, with, with mom, with dad, with schedules anything what's happening, here's your allowance for the week. and then we play a game or we do something like light, like you want to make it light. Okay. Initially. And because then Once it's built in.
Oh, we all come to the family meeting. We all do this. Then you can make it deeper Well, I remember my seven when he was he's like mom Um, I want to get a lizard and I'm gonna put it on the family meeting. I'm like, okay
Tiffany Sauder: That's
Michelle Gambs: amazing, you know, and I'm like that wasn't gonna happen, but we're gonna talk about that That's incredible, and then you know later there could be like You know, like grandma's sick, you know, at the family meeting, but we're not doing that.
Like, you know how it's like the family gets together and we all sit down and it's like bad news, but a family meeting becomes normalized and then you can have deep things or light things, but we can't just make it all heavy in a bitch session. So, and we want to start it out like with an encouragement feast and encouragement feast is the short version and your six would look like.
Um, you saying one thing you like about the three year old who's next to you. The three year old says one thing she likes or loves about herself. The three year old says one thing she likes about the dad next to her. The dad says one thing he likes or loves about himself. Keep going around. That's the short version.
The long version is you do each person. Like, we all do you. We all do the three year old. We all do dad. That's the longer version, Anyway, Encouragement Feast is a beautiful way to see and hear them say positive things about each other.
And themselves. It's so cool. That is really cool. It is. And so start with a positive thing like that. And then, you know, they'll roll their eyesBut eventually it becomes normalized. And then they actually like it. Yeah.
Tiffany Sauder: Yeah. I want to start this in 2024. Yeah, so. Ours are so logistical.
Yeah, right. Which is part of our existence. And everybody, I don't know, a couple years ago, I observed, Oh, the kids are also a customer of our plans. And I think we can skip that step. Does that make sense? Like, they want to know if Dad's traveling. They want, and I'm like, why do you care as long as somebody's picking you up from, and I started to realize they really, they are a customer of our plans.
That's right. I like how you said that. Um, and I, I don't know, I think that, even you saying at five they understand the value of money, we just underestimate them. Oh, they're,
Michelle Gambs: little people. They're not lesser people. They're just littler. They're the same. And they're quite reasonable.
You know, one of the things I tell parents, I'm like, please finish your sentences to your children so that makes it reasonable.
Not just like, make your bed. It's like, no, make your bed so that when you get in it tonight, it's like clean for you. Um, flush the toilet so it's like clean water for the next person. Like finish your sentence. Not just do this thing because they're like, oh that makes sense then. Mm hmm. They are new on the planet.
They do not understand. Oh my
Tiffany Sauder: word, it's so obvious when you say it. No, they don't know these things. Just finish the sentence I'm telling you. They are new on the planet. Oh my word. Oh my word. I'm never gonna be able to see a little person again the same way. They are. They are new on the planet.
Michelle Gambs: Well, they are, and then they understand.
They're like, Oh, okay, okay. That makes sense. Instead of, don't just do this thing. I mean, they resist because nobody wants to be told what to do, including little people.
Tiffany Sauder: We tell, we don't teach. Yeah, that's right. And that's the part that feels like we're just ordering them around. yeah, I say that to my little ones.
They'll be like, Boston, I'm like, who talks to you that way? Like, we, I don't, I don't speak to you that way. we have a, and I think this can sometimes, not always be positive, but just like a low conflict household. Like we're just not yellers. And how beautiful. It's not like crazy. and I, it's so calm and peaceful.
It is very calm and peaceful. What a gift to your children. Oh, thank you. I, oh really? Oh, thanks. Um, well, I want them to feel. Yeah, heard and seen and I have worked really hard and this is part of the system I've built in our lives Where I'm not just Administering our lives which I was in that season where I was just doing laundry and going to work and Unloading the dishwasher and all the stuff and I realized like I have to have help if I'm gonna be the mom I want to be and create the household like the way I want to feel when they're all home because I was just a I was just administering, and I was not a mom.
Michelle Gambs: good girl. Mm-Hmm. . Yeah. Yeah. Um, I, I call the executing is required. Like, it's like you're just executing is required and, and what you're talking about is the primary role. Nobody else can be their mom, but other people could do their laundry. Mm-Hmm.
Tiffany Sauder: or empty the dishwasher. But I think people have a lot of head trash.
And I, I'm, I'm really open about the support that we have inside of our home. They have a lot of head trash that having those things done, There's somebody who does our laundry. Um, and when she doesn't come, I send it out through a service called Poplin. Uh, and most of the time I send my kids out.
But so, unless they need something that's not like faster than what the system provides, like puts it back in their drawer, they don't do their own laundry. I have a little say to women who are like, I'm afraid of this promotion. I'm afraid of this new opportunity. I'm afraid I don't have the time to step into this opportunity.
I say Well, what would you give up to say yes to that? And we oftentimes go to them a really valuable thing to us. Like, I don't want to give up time with my kids. I don't want to give up, you know, going to the sporting events. I don't want to give up date night. It's like, well, don't give up stuff you like.
Give up stuff you don't like. What about unloading your dishwasher? What about your laundry? What about cleaning your toilet? would you trade that for, you know, an opportunity to continue to grow and develop and see new parts of the world and explore new parts of yourself? And then they oftentimes go to, I didn't grow up that way.
And so I feel guilty having it, or I don't want my kids to grow up spoiled with having somebody do that for them. And I want to say like, I think you're trading time and intimacy with them for administering their lives. But how do you as a therapist think about that? I'm just thinking about it as from my experience.
My connectedness with my kids is so much better when I don't have this long list of crap in my head that I need to do every Friday and every evening and every Saturday and every Sunday afternoon. So how do you speak to that?
Michelle Gambs: well, I think it's a beautiful, intention for it and your, um, precision, I guess, with it.
And, and there's a time that all of those life skills, your children need to know. Yes. And so that has to be done, which is, you know, when they're 12 yet you do need to know how to do laundry. And so this is going to be outsourced to you. Your laundry is yours because otherwise they go off and they are handicapped.
Tiffany Sauder: So walk me through this. Yep. Here is why I don't want to do that. Okay, yeah. I'm going to just export my reasoning. Girl, go. I don't want to have to manage it. Yeah. That is my reason for not wanting to have them do it. I don't want to have to manage it.
But I guess if I just let them deal with the consequences of not having stuff, I don't have to manage it. That's right.
Michelle Gambs: It's the easiest thing because, um, you don't have what you need. Sounds like a problem for you. Okay, let me
Tiffany Sauder: tell you my other reason. This one is also very, not a good reason, but it is my reason.
I like things to be tidy. Yes. You're like, I already knew you were going to say this first born,
Michelle Gambs: right? I, my brain
Tiffany Sauder: cannot handle physical chaos. And so that's part of it too. Yeah. I want it washed, folded, and put away, like, in the same day. Mmm, okay. Do I just need to chill out? She's like, let your daughter fail.
Michelle Gambs: We're gonna need to loosen up there. I'm
Tiffany Sauder: gonna need you to go ahead and come to my It's every Tuesday
Michelle Gambs: Well, I understand it I'm the same and okay This is what I I try to remind parents like the whole house the community of your house girl. You're defining you're defining how the living room kitchen you you get that these rooms of theirs.
They need to be theirs I've got this mom of four kids and when I talked to her out of remaking her kids beds, she was like, why? And I go, no, you gotta stop because first it's creating this. It's not good enough what they do and they are not creating their own systems. Like, you know, I had this mom, real close friend and she came into my son's room.
She goes, Oh, this looks like my son's room, you know, piles here, pile here. I go, that pile's clean, that pile's dirty. And she goes, Oh, at my house, that's organization. because it's like this works for him. This is not my preference, but it's not my room. And so there, I'm just saying at some point we need to shift.
I'm, I understand what you're doing and there has to be intention then at the family meeting of, Hey, you know, at some age, you guys, we got to learn some life skills here that you haven't had, you know, how to clean, how to do laundry, this is a good one. Tiffany, I walked into, My alterations gal once and this man, grown man, walks in with his button down shirt on a hanger and said, can you, um, sew this button on for me?
I went home, my son was 13, he's got like big hands and I was like, dude, we're sewing on a button now, right now, now, because you're going to learn how to do this because that is not going to be you where you are driving a car to go drive to an alternative for her to sew a button on for you.
I just was like, Oh, thank you for teaching me that, sir, that you are like handicapped,I'm not sure what page it is in here, but there's this little graph, not that people can see this, but I love this graph.
And it starts with when a kid is born, age zero, we're doing a hundred percent of the tasks for them. They can't eat, sleep, poop, anything without us. When they're one, they can put the Cheerios in their mouth, they can put the banana in their mouth.
At three, they can begin to You know, put their own clothes on. At 5, they could sort the silverware. At 7, they could feed the dog. At 12, they can do their own laundry. You know, everything needs to be handed over because otherwise we're sending off incompetent people. Yeah, you're right. That's the problem.
So the question is, what is something that I'm doing for my child that they can and should be doing for themselves? You know, at three, it was like teaching my son. Here's the bucket. Yep. Five times over your head. That kind of gets it out of your hair. You know, the shampoo, like I'm not going to be that for you, because we have to make them independent people.
you're not going to like this either. I'll give it to me. I'm open. I'm open. Okay. So one, I just posted this. I put it on my story this week because I watched this short interview between Dr. Shefali and Oprah. Oprah says to her, all about conscious parenting, and she said, um, want us to become irrelevant to our children.
Could you say more about that? Irrelevant to our children. Imagine being irrelevant to your children. That's actually our goal. Because we want them to thrive and have grit and be able to do all the things without us. And not need us, depend on us, have us rescue them. They're incapable and we've handicapped them.
If so,which hurts our ego. Oh, I don't want to be irrelevant to my kids.but we're handicapping them. When I see that there is the middle aged adult that's living with their parent, I'm like, Forever. That's, I see that as about the parent.
That's not about this person being incompetent, like the parent needs and it's taking out their needs on that child. Yeah. You know,
Tiffany Sauder: I learned this concept in sales training, but I've worked through a lot in my own life as an achiever. my identity quickly becomes my achievements. Um, and so my role.
Is what defines me instead of really understanding who am I without any output, without any making, without any growing, without anything. And I think that, um, I'm really grateful for that journey because I can see how this, this job of being a parent becomes our identity. And so then we do a lot of things to make that forever true.
Instead of being whole and complete and independent. My identity is independent of my kids. Um, but I delight in the role I get to play for them. But that is a really challenging perspective. I mean, Aubrey's going to be 15 this year. I have three years to make myself. Irrelevant to her in the sense of her discernment and, you know, you still call your parents for, how do I hang this?
Oh, absolutely. How do I use a drill? Like, how do I do stuff I've never had to do before? But, um, that's a really challenging paradigm.
Michelle Gambs: It is, but it's working ourselves out of a job. The minute they come out of us,we are letting go. And it's a constant letting go and we must. Otherwise we are handicapping them.
Tiffany Sauder: I'm really challenged in this conversation. I think that I've, this is my first experience with this like high school marker. And all of a sudden you kind of be like, Oh, time is like really finite. You've got four years. Each one that goes by is 25 percent of the time. Like, woo. Like
Michelle Gambs: time is just fast.
Tiffany Sauder: fast. And. Um, I'm challenged to see my younger kids as more capable because four years is very short amount of time. You know, it's almost like I just, yeah, I'm just feel really challenged in that right now.
Michelle Gambs: um, with teenagers were demoted and peers are promoted. So, there's an enormous
Tiffany Sauder: talk more about that cause I heard you talk about that on one of your
Michelle Gambs: episodes.
Oh girl. Yeah. Teenagers. okay. So first. I mean, I know she's an oldest and she's, you know, trying to do all the right things, but I'm going to predict that your other three are going to be a little different teenagers. Yeah. You know, that'll be more normal. Not as easy. Yes. I know that. You know, my son was like that.
He's second. She was quote, easy as a teen. That doesn't mean healthy. Like she's just, you know. fearful is all she was fearful and he's less fearful and he's doing more of the normal stuff. And so it was harder to parent, but I didn't blame him for that. I'm like, no, he's normal. She wasn't normal. So I'm just saying what we're, we're talking about normal.
I'm not judging your kids, you know, so just to say, first of all, all teenagers are impaired. They're all impaired. So if you view them as impaired, that's super helpful. It's really helpful when I would just go right there. Impaired. Don't say that to them of course, but view them as impaired.
And the reason they are is because they look in these adult bodies, but they don't have adult brains. Boys, 25 girls, 21. And so the frontal lobe, which is where the parenting of yourself happens, the decision making, the thinking through consequences. that's not hooked online fully and so they don't have that.
you know, one of the dumbest questions we ask children, the very dumbest. Why did you do that? Why? Why of anything? first of all, don't ask any of the kids, ask what happened, where, with whom, any of that they can answer why they don't know. And you know, when my son did another stupid thing and I said to him, Charlie, what were you thinking?
And he goes, I wasn't. And I said, I appreciate your honesty.
You know, because they don't know why they're doing anything. You know, so they're all impaired. So view them as impaired, first of all. And that helps soften your view of, what is wrong? Because, I mean, it's a nice trajectory, Tiffany. Like, 9, 11, like it's all linear uphill. And then it starts to dip down and then it's like, Oh, you're like 14, but you're behaving like a nine year old.
Oh, okay. Now you're 14 and you're behaving like you're 21. Like it's this bizarre. Yeah. That's what goes down. And, and it's a roller coaster that you're on of hormones and emotions it's kind of head spinning and it's head spinning for them. And we need to like stay connected to that because it's a ride.
It's a ride. Um, and the best way to approach teenagers is becoming what's called a dispassionate cop. We're not dispassionate. We are very impassioned to our teenagers who do stupid things. We're very impassioned with the lectures, the guilting, the shaming, um, all of that, you know, which is ineffective.
Tiffany Sauder: stories. I find.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. It's ineffective. All of it. so, you know, if you come at me with how disrespectful I am, you know, you, you do these things for me, guilt, then I'm going to argue with any point in there of, well, no, I do help. And I did.
I am. I did. We're going to argue with all of that. Mhm. With the the error of your argument, you know, cuz I'm gonna totally I'm gonna tear that apart versus Dispassionate cop is you come at me very calmly, which is not I understand not how any of us feel as parents But you can be impassioned behind closed doors with your partner cry scream in the car do whatever you need to do It's real don't do it to these teenagers because it's ineffective and they don't want to hear it So, dispassionate cop is calm, delivery, very calm, neutral tone.
So, because you, um, didn't practice that. Oh, seriously. No, it is. It is. Just because you chose to come home late, you know, and you violated your curfew tonight, you won't be going anywhere next weekend. Calm delivery. And the, and the cop part is that it's consequences.
In order for it to be a consequence versus a punishment, they're very different.
Punishments make them very different. Punishments are ineffective and they pretty much make them hate you. Punishments are usually arbitrarily assigned, random, and they don't fit the offense at all. And so they're like, over here, shocked and offended and angry at you for making this negative thing happen.
But like Doesn't teach them anything. I just hate you. I hate you, pretty much, now. And you can remember this if you were punished. I remember it like how it was like, get a grip. Like, get a grip, people. And I'm not learning anything. I'm just learning how to go underground and do it more behind your back.
Because I don't want that again. You know? So a consequence is for ours. It's reasonable. Next weekend, you won't be going out next weekend. It's reasonable. It's related to the crime. Offense. It's related to coming home and going out. It's not, you won't have your phone or you're not going to your volleyball tournament.
I'm not taking you to shopping. Those are not related. Mm-Hmm. . So I hate you. Mm-Hmm. . Okay. Reasonable related. It's teaching them responsibility, which is the whole point of this. Punishments teach them nothing. Mm-Hmm. except hate you. And it's respectful. It's not, I'm gonna shame you and I'm gonna put you in the corner and you're not, you're not gonna, you know, I'm gonna tell all your friends and no, no, no.
You see it's, it's effective and when we do that, Tiffany, over here as a teenager, I'm left with kind of like, I did this to myself. When it's a consequence that is calmly delivered. I still won't like it necessarily, but underneath, I'm like, Hmm, I did this to myself over here. And I'm taking the consequence, which is again, teaching our children something instead of This I hate you and I'm just going underground and I'm going to get behind your back because this I could have this random thing happen at any point from these things like no, no, we're going to make it tied.
And that's the hardest part for parents is making it related because we don't know how to relate things sometimes. And I was telling you about that mom of four kids. And she said, Michelle, I can relate anything to that phone.
And I'm like, good girl. I can relate
Tiffany Sauder: anything to that book. Literally. It's the center of the wheel.
Michelle Gambs: You know, so it's like, so, so how that works is like, like, um, well, because you can't speak respectfully to your sister right now, then I can't trust that you can speak respectfully on that phone. So you're going to need to park that phone for the next day.
That's how it would make you see, that's how it would. Circle around to make sense to that kid of it's reasonable. It's related teaching responsibilities, respectful, not I'm grounding you for a month or you're not going, you know, that's not, that's not a consequence. That's a
Tiffany Sauder: punishment. So how does that same idea work with somebody younger?
So I'll give you a very specific example. Yes. My, my three year old Quincy, she's a climber and I let her climb. It's fine. She gets up on stuff. She's, she figures it out. There's this one spot though, it's like an opening that opens up and you can look over at our base.
Our stairs go down. Does that make sense? So the backside of it is two stories, like it would, it would be bad. And I'm pretty relaxed, but on this side where she's climbing up, it just looks like a window sill.So this morning she, which a couple of times she's tried to climb up on this little ledge and it's like four or six inches.
It's not very big. So I'm like, she gets up there. This is just not going to be great. So I, I would say I punished her this morning. I said, honey, you cannot climb up on this. I told you you can climb anywhere in the house. You can climb on this little ledge. You can climb on the couch.
You can climb on the island. You can climb whatever you want to do, but you cannot climb right here cause it's dangerous. And I picked her up and I showed her over the edge. And said, do you see it's, it will hurt you and you need to obey mommy. And then I put her in timeout, which I would say is probably punishment.
I don't know if it's, if it's reasonable related response, but no, but
Michelle Gambs: I, I, you're afraid.
Tiffany Sauder: I don't like watch her like a hawk, you know?
Michelle Gambs: Yeah. Well, how did she respond when you showed her the drop?
Tiffany Sauder: Um, well, she was like, Mommy, are you mad at me? Because my tone had changed.
I said, Honey, I'm not mad at you. Um, but you have to obey Mommy, and we've talked about this. So, she knew that I was talking to her about something serious. I don't know if she can comprehend the danger. I don't, I just don't know if she can.
Michelle Gambs: Oh, I think she can.
Okay, the first thing is, um, you did great with explaining the why, right? That was great. and I might even do some like experiential things with her. Like drop a ball or something. Yes, exactly. Exactly. Like. I need you to see how far down this goes. What do you think would happen if that was you?
You know, so that she understands it. Like when my daughter, when they were like two, instead of saying, stay away from the oven, it's hot. I literally took her hand, I shoved it in there, and I'm like, it's hot here. Just so you understand. Like there's no, because when we forbid things, Tiffany, if I say don't turn around and look at that black thing over there, that tripod, don't do it.
Psychology 101, all the brain hears is, doesn't hear the don't, it hears turn around and do that thing. So anything that we forbid becomes very attractive. we don't need to forbid anything. that's shocking to parents because I'm like, no, no, really, you don't need to forbid anything.
like, you want to, say what I call potty words. Feel free. Say them all you want. Go to the bathroom, say them in the potty, say them to the potty. I don't want to hear it. Like it hurts my ears. Oh, totally. You done? If you're not done, don't come out, man.
Totally. You want to, you want to bite something? Here's something to bite. You looks like you want to yell. Here's, you can go and here's where you can yell. You want to hit things. These are some things you can hit. You don't need to forbid. I could save marketing a lot of money because it's like, don't drink and drive.
I'm like, you just made that really attractive, really attractive.
Tiffany Sauder: I let my kids use scissors and I had taken scissors to a volleyball game for my three year old.
She's like, what's next? Your cutco knives. I was like, well, actually I do let her cut cucumbers at home. Cause she wants to do what I'm doing. And I feel like if I let them do it safely, that's right. That they will know how to do it. Yes, girl. Yeah. Yes. Yes. But, uh, okay.
Michelle Gambs: Don't forbid. Um, but that's
Tiffany Sauder: interesting.
So I could tell Quincy, actually, you can't climb up in here, but you can throw balls over. That's right. That is a different way of, this can be a place where you throw
Michelle Gambs: balls. Totally. Yeah. And I want you to go down those stairs, honey. And I want you to like, you know, it could be fun. You could count the stairs or something like, see how far down that is.
That's pretty far. You know, when you go get that ball, it's really far. So that would be a long drop. like something that she does jump from, you could. Compare. You know how it is when you jump from that to that. It's pretty high. Like, what do you think about that?
Like, so she begins to, again, new person on the planet to her. It's just, this is fun climbing. You're saving her
Tiffany Sauder: from herself. I like the idea of redirecting and saying you can't climb up there, but you can throw balls over there. Like then it gives her something to do with that space. Cause she's like a moth attracted to it.
Michelle Gambs: Yes, that's right. When it's forbidden, it's very attractive. We put a charge on something that makes it really attractive. So you can, yeah, what you can do here, and if you want to climb, girl, climb over here and this, this is going to hurt you a lot.
Tiffany Sauder: I feel this in my soul. She's just a defiant little thing. If I tell her that she can't, it's like literally her obsession.
That's right. And so I have to redirect her a lot. Yeah, she wants control and power.
Michelle Gambs: Yeah, it's a normal need of power. Uh
Tiffany Sauder: huh.
Um, so helpful to me. Yes. Okay. This has been the most fun. If people are interested, Michelle, in your work, what are the ways someone can work with you or get access to your brain and experience, uh, and then we'll drop links and show notes, I know you've got a lot of access points, so what does that look like?
Michelle Gambs: So free. There are 25 podcasts on my website, michellegams. com. Um, and there are 35 YouTube videos that are all free that's just like basic good information stuff. The book on Amazon stay away from option D. I don't know. It's like 15 or something. Um, and then if you want to drill down on specific things, there's like bundles of workshops.
Like if you want to learn about fighting, if you want to learn about power struggles, if you want to learn about how to handle feelings. Those are there like in bundles. I think they're like 99 or, I don't remember. And then there's the deep dive, which is everything is a, four week course. It's eight hours online of videos broken down.
And so four sessions of that. And you get The whole thing there. Awesome. Yeah. Awesome.
Tiffany Sauder: Michelle gams. com. Yes. We'll put links in show notes. This has been a gift to me. Thank you so much.
Michelle Gambs: So fun. And I, I have something to say to you about your, your, you, you probably know this about the title of your podcast, scared, confident.
Do you know the Eleanor Roosevelt quote? No, come on. Okay. We gain strength, courage, and confidence by really looking fear in the face. We must do the thing we think we cannot do. That's your title. I have chills. We gain strength, courage, and confidence by really looking fear in the face. We must do the thing we think we cannot do.
Behave, act, while scared, will give you confidence. So
Tiffany Sauder: thanks. Thank you. Thanks so much, Michelle. This was awesome. Thanks.
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