Hi and welcome to Chapter Two of kNOw Limits Newsletter.

In this Chapter you will find the following morsels of inspiration to digest;

  • Update on Mandy and Caylees learning from their forthcoming book
  • A real life situation introduced in the mailbag
  • Book reports from Caylee and I on parent skills and good business practise to name a few
  • Information on forthcoming courses that kNOw Limits is offering
  • Information on a chosen group that offers a resource of events and social nights

Dear Mandy’s Mail bag.

I am getting really fed up at the moment as my 13 year old daughter doesn’t listen to a word I say. She keeps saying there’s no point in listening to me as I only try and give her advice that she doesn’t want. Well what was the point of her telling me in the first place. She never listens to me anyway and then comes running to me upset when things haven’t worked out. Do you have any advice?

Mandy says………

Do you ever speak to your friends or family just to get things ‘off your chest’? Well that’s what your daughter may want to do. She wants to share things with you about her life which is great you have a close relationship. However you are falling into the trap of thinking she is only speaking to you because she wants advice. Next time she tells you something just let her finish without interrupting. Pretend you have a zip on your mouth and zip it up everytime she talks.
When she has finished ask her what support she needs from you. She may turn round and say ‘Nothing, I just wanted you to know’. The advice we give to our sons and daughters may work for us but not for them. It is important to enable her to find the right answers for herself. You may also find that by letting her talk things out loud she will make sense of things herself just by hearing her own voice.

Your daughter is also going through a mixture of emotions at her age and may not be clear what she wants. If you push this too fast she is more likely to make hasty decisions under pressure and possibly blame you later for this.



See book review's 1 and 2 below.

Mandy and Caylees learning from their forthcoming book.

There have been 2 perspectives that have helped us take a step back from getting involved in arguments the last 2 months. The first is;

1) No body gets to be wrong. So in other words we both get to be right in some way and have an opinion. This has helped us reduce the ‘niggling arguments’ that can come from getting involved in ‘who was right’. One example of this was when Caylee and I were on the way to the childminders. I said to Caylee the childminder was picking her up from netball and Caylee said it was the previous week we had asked her to do it. I started to get involved in proving I was right and Caylee was wrong. We both started to raise our voices and I reminded myself of the phrase ‘nobody gets to be wrong’. I asked Caylee what we needed to know now to move this forward. She said to make sure the child minder knew what was happening. We both agreed we had the same agenda and this calmed the situation. I also said to Caylee there was a possibility I may have made a mistake. I decided that even if I had not made a mistake it did not matter. Caylee would learn more knowing its o.k. to make mistakes. A similar concept that a colleague shared with me this week is ‘If you have the choice between being right or kind… kind.’ I will try this one for the coming months.

2) The second is having focused ‘screaming time’. This was Caylees idea that if we were getting caught in the trap of niggling at each other and we could feel it building up, we could take time out to scream at each other. It has to be for a fixed time only and we were both clear the timing was a boundary. We had a watch timing so we could see it and know when time was up. The parody in forcing the screaming and shouting at each other was after about a minute we both ended up laughing at each other. It helped release any tension we felt and there was no blaming each other.

Book Report 1.

Choice Theory. A new Psychology of Personal Freedom. William Glasser. 1998 HarperPerennial. ISBN 0-06-093014-4

I found this book to be very relevant to parents and teens. It focuses on the fact that we have more choices than we realise. To teach teens and families that they can take control and make better choices is liberating. It also enables teens to take more responsibility rather than blaming everyone else for how they feel. The focus of Choice Theory is “How can I figure out how to be free to live my life the way I want to live it and still get along well with the people I need?”

In the middle chapters I did find some of the explanations a little repetitive and the references to genes and mental illness too simplistic. From Chapter 9 onwards it became more interesting as it gave a greater variety of examples of common problems and ways of dealing with them.

Overall a very good book that takes focus away from people feeling they have few choices in life.

Book Report 2.

The E-Myth Revisited. Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It. Michael E Gerber. Harper Collins. ISBN 0-88730-728-0

This book is very relevant for any small/medium sized business owner. The main focus of the book breaks down the roles of a business owner into manager, entrepreneur and technician. It says the main reason businesses fail is because the owners think if you understand the technical work of a business you understand a business that does that technical work. WRONG!

Being a great coach and running a great coaching business are 2 different things.

It explores the conflicts that arise between the roles and suggests too much time is spent on the technician role.

The main part of the book then gives examples of systems that businesses need to set up as opposed to relying on personalities of people.

I found the use of language such as franchise put me off slightly but if I ignored that it was useful.

Overall this book makes you think quite seriously about how far you want to take your business and ways of setting systems up.

Caylees book report

Vicky Angel by Jacqueline Wilson

Vicky Angel is great book, and takes you on an emotional roller coaster and leaves a tear-jerking experience in your mind.

The book is about a girl who dies in a car crash in the early stages of secondary school and then becomes an angel. Strangely it makes Vicky and her best friends (Jade) friendship stronger.

I would recommend this book to girls (sorry boys) aged 10 onwards. Vicky Angel is a brilliant book and if you’re above 10, you’re a girl and you enjoy reading emotional books then this is the book for you.

By Caylee Gutsell


In our first newsletter I also introduced we were following 7 Ways focusing on daily questions. We had moved from respect to listening. The last 2 months have seen us move from listening to understand and understanding to appreciate. The biggest trap I found myself falling into as an adult was trying to help Caylee have empathy for the adults perspective. Caylee told me she was very annoyed with her teacher and proceeded to tell me why. I found myself automatically trying to defend the teachers perspective and help her see it from the teachers eyes. Caylee got annoyed and said she did not feel I was listening to her or understanding her point of view. I realised I needed to stay focused on Caylees point of view and asked her to describe it to me. I tried to imagine this by using all the senses to get into her experience. E.g. What are you thinking? What can you feel? Where can you feel it? What can you see? I also listened to the language she was using. She talked about how it made her feel so I asked more questions about feelings. In the same way if your son or daughter uses visual language or cognitive language try and match the content. This will enable them to feel more understood.

The process is enabling us to be more honest and real with each other. However this can be hard to accept at times. I think the skills of appreciation and support we are starting to explore will come in handy!!

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