Your words create your home environment. So, are you ready to experience more positive energy in your home? I’m so excited to show you how.

This is an exercise I got from Happify Daily. (Listen to my podcast on the topic if this is something you feel is correct for you to work on in your home.)

Here are 5 negative phrases and how you can turn them positive.

1. “I’m exhausted” or “I’m frustrated” to “I need to rest” or “I’m changing my expectations”

These negative phrases acknowledge a state of being. You’re voicing the challenge you feel and you’re giving more power to it. Instead, switch the focus to voice what you need. If you need to rest, see how you can make time for that.

Maybe you need to change your expectations.

When I was raising small children, at times I simply needed to realize that if everyone was breathing and everyone was safe, that was good for that day. What expectations can you let go of?

2. Change constructive criticism to feedback

Notice with “constructive criticism” how it’s still criticism.

Some children (especially Type 2s and Type 4s) need a more sensitive or private approach when they need instruction. Do you need to take your energy down a notch in order to meet that need?

How can you shift toward a “feedback” mindset?

When you give feedback, you’re giving information to your child so they can grow and learn from it. It’s a wonderful team effort!

3. “Don’t!” to “I would like it if you…”

We tend to focus on what we don’t want. In my book, Remembering Wholeness, I talk a lot about this and how we create more of what we don’t want when we put so much energy there.

For example, instead of saying “don’t throw the ball inside,” try saying “I would like it if you threw the ball outside please.”

Give your children clear feedback and direction on what you do want, rather than just telling then what you don’t want.

4. “No” to “That is enough for now”

There are so many ways you can re-frame “no” for your child. In fact, all you need to do is put more words into the space and the energy stays open.

Answering your child with a simple “No” shuts down the energy and may cause frustration for your child. Of course I advocate for parents setting healthy boundaries and that includes not allowing children to always get what they ask for.

However, I still think there are many, many ways to add more words to the space in order to honor your child.

5. “Don’t” to “I like it when you…”

This is similar to #3, but flip it just a little more to speak to your child’s behavior (#3 deals more with their actions.) Shift the focus off the negative and on to instruction, support and positivity. This opens the energy and it will revolutionize your home environment!

I was really moved by how this teacher begins every day complimenting all of the students. How would this practice change your home for the better?

Imagine what it would be like to see your children’s faces as you compliment them and honor them for who they are.

Remember—this will take practice. After all, you’re developing a new habit so be patient with yourself.

I think you’re going to see immediate results with your children. And you’ll see results years down the road too.

I promise this will be worth it.

This article was originally published on The Child Whisperer.