birth order

Last-Borns: Making Your Birth Order Work for You

As the pattern would follow for this week: Tamara writing on the 1st born and being one, Alexa being a middle child and writing about that- guess what I might be? Yes, the "BABY" as we are so often referred to! The Last-Born gets a wrap for being coddled and getting all the attention. This may be true but we also have a lot of great characteristics that come from this. Here are some things to remember if you are a last-born. Accept responsibility for yourself. It was easy to blame things on the older ones in the family, right? Not now as an adult. It's time to grow up and take responsibility for our own mistakes (and the good stuff, too!).

Think neat. If you are messy and disorganized, it's time to change that. Picking up after yourself will eliminate stress on you and for others who pick up after you.

Give of yourself. Being the center of attention can create selfishness. It's great to step out of yourself and think of ways to help others. Mow the neighbors yard without telling them it was you. Skip the need for accolades. Pay it forward to the person behind you in the Starbucks drive thru- buy their drink and drive away! Give money or time to a charity or organization. Think outside of "you".

Beware of being too independent. Notice when you are excluding others when you need help. Don't be too proud to ask for it. And when you do make a mistake, admit it. Don't try to blame others.

Always be aware of your gifts: being funny, charming, and persuasive. This can be negative or positive. Some people use this to manipulate people in a negative way. Use your charm as an asset to do good and to help others. Don't use it just to get attention.

Share the applause. Be aware of and ask about what is going on with other people. Be interested in others instead of always talking about yourself. And share the stage now and then. Others have talents and need to hear applause as well.

Before marriage, try dating firstborns. Firstborns will balance the relationship in that they like to take charge and be serious. If you are laid back and like to have fun, hopefully this will balance out and not create a ton of conflict.

There you have it first-borns. Tomorrow Joleen will finish us out with "Making the Birth Order Work". Thank you for reading and have a great day!

Source for the week: K. Leman “The Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are”

Written by Natalie Chandler

Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Natalie enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, and couples counseling.  We also specialize in family counseling, child, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville

Middle Child: Making Birth Order Work For You

Have you ever heard the term “middle child syndrome?”  While it is not a true diagnosable condition, it describes some traits that sometimes come along with being a middle child.  We middle children get a bum rap.  We have a reputation for being needy, jealous, and have low self-esteem due to the fact that our older siblings were pleasers and leaders and our younger siblings were easy and laid back.  While these descriptions might have some accuracy, we can also make our birth order work for us! Nurture your people skills.  Because we are middle born, we are natural negotiators.  We had to manage the older sibling and younger sibling when mediating who gets to sit in the front seat or whose turn it is to play a board game.  Use your skills to see both sides and deal with life events as they really are.

Enjoy your uniqueness.  Whatever your personality may be, fight to keep your unique qualities.  If you are quirky or free spirited, remember that there are businesses and companies who look and value traits just like yours.

Express yourself.  Middle children sometimes feel unheard since they may have felt unheard growing up.  Do not apologize for having opinions and share your point of view.

Focus on meaningful relationships.  The middle child often invests in friendships to help evolve their sense of identity.  If are a middle child, and you have a lot of friends enjoy it but do not spread yourself too thin.  Establish a limited number of relationships to maintain meaningfulness.

Don’t compare.  Try not to get sucked into comparison games.  Middle children understand more than anyone how there are always people above and below when it comes to interest, skill, ability, or appearance.  Comparisons do not lead to anything positive.

Consider taking the lead.  Firstborns are not the only people who can lead.  Middle children make excellent managers or leaders due to skills gained from their experience with compromise and negotiation.  We know how to see issues from different angles and use the art of exchange.

Next time you hear someone use the term "middle child syndrome", you can politely teach them all the good qualities that can develop from being a middle child.  Please come back tomorrow as Natalie talks about how to make the last child birth order work for you.  As always, thanks for stopping by.

Written by Alexa Griffith, LMHC, LCAC, NCC, RPT

Alexa Griffith, LMHC, LCAC, NCC, RPT is a licensed therapist and Registered Play Therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Alexa enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, couples and relationship counseling. Alexa also does play therapy, family counseling, child counseling, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville, and Westfield

Firstborns: Making Your Birth Order Work for You!

Oh how this week's blog is too true. I'm a first-born, and I can honestly say that the info below is dead-on. Hopefully if you are a first-born as well you'll be able to see the items below and relate:

  • Take smaller bites of life - First-borns get involved in too many things, leaving very little time for themself.
  • Work on saying "no" -  Most first-borns are pleasers - trying to get the approval of others by accepting the requests and invitations of other people. How do you put a stop to this? Know your limitations, and accept that having limitations are reasonable and human.
  • Lower your sights a bit - Because you are the first born in your family, your parents had great expectations for you, and you probably have great expectations for yourself as well. You expect to be the best, to be perfect to be first. Put those expectations aside and enjoy life. Do less and enjoy more.
  • Enjoy your natural curiosity - First-borns are known for asking alot of questions & wanting all the details. There's no need to apologize for this character trait of yourself. This is a sign of a leader who can see a situation, figure out what needs to be done, then apply the steps to logically solve the problem.
  • Take your time - Most first-borns are careful and cautious. If you need to take time making decisions, then do that. Don't let people pressure your process.
  • If you're serious, try to develop a sense of humor - Can you laugh at your mistakes? Be more accepting of your humanness and that you're going to fail now and then. If you don't make mistakes, how are you going to learn?
  • Don't apologize for being conscientious and over-organized - First-borns like structure and "to do" lists. The key is to have flexibility and not be run by the lists and structure.

Remember, the key is not to beat yourself up, but to make what's beautiful and wonderful about yourself WORK for yourself. And don't worry, if you're not a first-born, we have each birth order coming up and covered this week. Tomorrow Alexa will talk about being a middle-child. Thanks for reading!

Source for the week: K. Leman “The Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are”

Written by: Tamara Wilhelm MA, LMHC, LCAC

*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling  at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.