I used to ask this question all the time and I always came to the same conclusion. It’s my fault parenting is hard and guess what it’s your fault too. But hang on before you click the back button because that’s not such a bad thing, it actually means we have the power to improve it. I’m not sure that’s what you wanted to hear but I’m not here to tell you what you want to hear, I’m here to tell you what you might NEED to hear.
Yes, parenting is hard but (our life consists of patterns we’ve adopted by default or design) sometimes it helps to admit it when we are making life hard for ourselves and do a good honest assessment of why and how we make things hard and what we can do about it.
So here it is, my list of the things I do sometimes that make parenting hard. I hope someone finds it helpful in the diagnosis and treatment of their current parenting woes.
1, We Live A Pre-Programmed Life
We are raised to think we have to live this pre-prescribed life of normality we consume all this information and take it on board without really stopping to think which bits really do apply to us. We all know everyone is different but, few have really stopped to realise just how unique and special we actually are. There is no one size fits all. Maybe it’s time to stop striving towards societies idea of normal, and audit life so we can design and live a life we love.
2, We Obsess Over Trivialities
Yes, we all want a clean house and tidy children, but for me, the most important things in life are not the little things I often find myself obsessing about. The most important thing should be building amazing relationships, radical self care and love, commitment to lifelong learning and designing and living a life we love. All else is secondary. When the kids leave home are they going to remember how many creases we’re in the bedsheets? not likely. They are going to remember the time and attention you spent with them.
3, We Compare Our Lives With The Highlight Reels Of Others
Does this sound familiar? You look up your friends on social media with their perfect lives, family, homes and holidays and you wonder how come your life doesn’t look that way. I bet you forget it’s just the showreel, it doesn’t exist on its own. You don’t know what goes on behind closed doors., Concentrate on you and yours. Take care of the fundamentals and your highlight reel will get brighter.
4, We Beat Ourselves Up
Just because we don’t live up to what our minds idea of what we should be, do or have doesn’t make us bad people, failures or insignificant, but that’s what we seem to tell ourselves. We hold ourselves to higher standards (not a bad thing if its empowering) than we would expect from others. Our insecurities have a lot to answer for. If others spoke to us the way we speak to ourselves we’d surely call it abuse so I think its time to stop it. Stop Abusing Yourself.
5, We Catastrophise
The tiniest little molehill can become a mountain when a parent gets hold of it. Believe me, I’ve been there.
6, We Are Self-Obsessed Control Freaks On A Power Trip
What a dangerous combination eh? but what if it’s all a facade we’re trying to uphold just so we can prove to ourselves and everyone out there what wonderfully perfect parents we are so we can get a pat on the back to boost our precious egos. We got it sorted… I’m here to let you in on a little secret…Nobody is perfect you can stop pretending now… Phew, isn’t that a weight off?.
7, We Fear Everything
We live in this world of perpetual fear even moreso once we bring a child into the world. What if something terrible happens runs through my head every 2.5 seconds. we especially fear failure, (what if we make a big fat mess out of all of this?) but what if we reframed it all as an opportunity to learn and grow. When we see every experience and interaction is an opportunity life doesn’t seem so hard after all.
8, We Invite Negativity, Judgement and Criticism into Our Homes
There’s tons of negativity in the world, but wouldn’t it be great if our homes could be a safe haven? Well, guess what, it can. If you decide to leave negativity at the door you can quickly change the environment in your home into a more positive one.
9, We Forget To Count Our Blessings
There’s alot of crap going on in the world if we look for it we will surely find it. But this is also true if you look for the good. What’s really important in the grand scheme of things is that we and our children are happy, healthy and thriving.
What about you, Do you cling to negative habits that you struggle to release? What do you do that makes your parenting life harder than it needs to be? Would you like a post on how to break these cycles? let me know in the comments below.