Do you let your kids mess up or do you feel like you are responsible for their every move?
I know I’ve felt I had to protect my kiddo recently, when really….I needed to teach him how to show up for himself.
And this has been my discovery of whole new way of parenting in the last few months. It hasn’t been easy, and there has been plenty of tears and frustration and doing my best to stay curious along the way.
What has worked in the past with my kiddo, no longer works. I didn’t want to believe it, I didn’t even want to see it AND I worked dynamically against myself to make what has worked, work now.
Needless to say, I’m here writing this to divulge the amazing information along the way so that you do not have to bang your head against a wall when it comes to things shifting and changing with your kiddos.
The first thing you need to know is that things are going to change. Things will go really well, you’ll find your rhythm with your kiddo, and then it will change. Don’t hold on to the rhythm…save yourself from the misery.
Secondly, you’ve got to be as curious as your kids when they asked you about EVERYTHING. It’s not about asking why in parenting, that will only send you on a strong loop of insanity. It’s about getting curious about what is possible. And not what is possible from the perspective of you want it your way and your way only…nope, it’s about what is possible that you really have not considered and you might be delighted and surprised from.
Let me give you a recent example. As my son and I have been having some rough moments together…think whining, tears, frustration, etc, etc, I thought that giving him freedom to choose was where he would thrive the most. Nope! I was wrong. What I discovered as I let the possibility in, was that he needed really firm boundaries, and zero warnings or chances.
You might be reading this and saying ‘of course, Maggie’, and you get it when you get it. I was in total resistance to so much of the hard, firm, parenting approaching. (I know I know, another facepalm).
Thirdly, stop the resistance. When you resist, things persist, period. When you are open to something different, even if it is not your way, or hasn’t been your way ever, you can create a lot more ease for you and your everyday moments when you are open to trying things out. And know, that just because you are trying things out, it doesn’t mean you have to stick to them. You always have choice
Fourth, No two kids and no two days are the same. Everyday is a new day to explore, and be with your kids in a new way. If you let go of the past of how your kid was yesterday or even an hour ago, you can see new ways of interacting with them that will create more ease for both of you.
Fifth, it’s ok if they fight back. And kids will fight back, especially if you have been parenting a certain way and you change it up. It’s new to them, and the probably like it the old way…because most likely, you were letting them get away with something that they happened to love but it didn’t serve anybody. Let go of the urge to react to their resistance and just allow it, you’ll save a lot of time and energy and thank yourself for it in the long run.
And sixth, be incredibly kind to yourself. Change is going to happen and change does not have to be hard. Find your flow, mess it up, laugh it offer, get back to your flow.
Our role as parents is to do the best we can with the tools we have. If you need better tools, then get out there and discover those tools.