How would your kids describe you as a parent? Is it the description you want it to be? Read on to find out how you can answer this question and move towards the type of parent you want to be remembered as.
I was confronted with this question while I attended the funeral of a mother of 6 children who died from cancer at age 53. As I listened to the numerous tributes to her, I was humbled by how they described her as a mother.
It lead me to reflect on what people would say about me.
As part of my coach training, I have identified my values and considered the parent I want to be on multiple occasions. Some of these include being loving, supportive, calm, building responsibility, faith-filled, creating self-assurance and modeling happiness.
What I realized was that as time passed, I lost sight of that vision. Fortunately, I have not strayed far but some course corrections are needed to be supportive and deepen their faith more often.
What I learned was that I need to be purposeful not just in ONE moment but in EVERY moment and take time to consciously assess how I am fulfilling it.
While steeped in loss, I received a gift from my friend that I want to pass on to you so you can hold yourself accountable not just in one moment but in every moment.
7 Steps To Conscious Parenting
- What is important to you? What do you hold dear that guides how you act? This helps you identify your values. Values are priorities that tell you how to spend your time in a way that fulfills your deepest desires.
- Brainstorm a list of your values in answer to the above questions. Try to reduce your responses to a single word or two that encapsulates each answer. For example, if one of your answers is, “having a successful career,” then you might reduce that to the value of “success.”
- Next, prioritize the list. Ask, “which of these values is truly the most important to me in life? If I could only satisfy one of these values, which one would it be?”
- Based on the prioritized list, consider what values you want to pass on to your children. Create a separate list and prioritize. Feel free to add ones that are not on your list.
- Finally, consider how that helps answer the question “What kind of parent do I want to be?“ This includes the values you want to pass to your children and the ones that are important to you. For example, success may be important to you but you want to pass on a value of effort/doing your best.
- Now that you have identified your values and vision, ask:
- How am I doing towards that?
- What am I doing well?
- How can I leverage that more?
- Where might I need to course correct?
- What support do I need to do this?
- Identify the new behaviors you want to show and create a plan. Consider how you want to be held accountable to making the change and take action to move towards living a more purposeful life.
Try sharing what you are working on with your children and spouse and ask them for feedback. This is a bold, vulnerable move that can feel scary but provides valuable insight.
Post your values and vision somewhere to keep in your awareness on a daily basis. Make sure to continue to check in on how you are moving towards that vision.
I am grateful that I have 3 wonderful healthy happy children and I will strive in EVERY moment to help them grow into their fullest potential. I wish the same for you.
This guest article comes from Certified Mad2Glad Parent Coach, Suz Roemer Feely, who is a mother of 3 children: 2 gifted sons, ages 10 and 11, and a dynamic daughter, age 7. Suz and her husband work hard to create calm in their family and have found more calm AND deeper, more robust relationships with their children over the past few years. They enjoy summers at the cabin with extended family, Spring Break road trips, reading together and lots of sports activities.
10/10/16 – Free Workshop: Mindful Parenting: How To Stop The Fighting, Yelling and Frustration in Eden Prairie (7p-8:30p). Info here.
10/17/16 – FREE Workshop: 8 Pillars of Parenting for Peace at Home in Bloominton (7:15p-8:30p). Info here.
11/01/16 – FREE Workshop: Electronic Addiction: How To Break Free From Battles Over Screens in St. Louis Park (6:30p-8:30p). Info here.