From parenting zen to parenting nightmare in less than 60 seconds. Has that ever happened to you? Our confidence is totally shot as our kid is melting down on the floor or pounding on our bedroom door – where we’ve taken refuge!
Finding grace in these moments can be tough.
Sometimes it isn’t until we are completely flattened with illness, depression, divorce, or overwhelm that we realize that doing less than actually adds up to greater than.
I’ve advocated “Lazy Parenting” for years.
Lazy Parenting means less than while actually adding up to greater than, in the end. When you do less, be less, accomplish less, you are opening up the world for your kids to do more, be more, and accomplish more – or at least feel like they have the know-how, if they choose to use it!
Before illness flattens you – lighten your load. What can your kids be doing for themselves? When my girls were in 1st and 3rd grades, I was teaching (and very stressed) and we had a 30-minute commute to school. Mornings were NOT pretty at my house. I did not like making lunches and I guess that was pretty obvious to my girls. Without conversation, they began to take over lunch preparations. Viola`! They got what they wanted in their own lunches AND mom was a little nicer to be with on the morning commute! Do I advise this approach? No.
Learn from my mistakes and take a serious look at what your stressors are. And then ask for help and permission to be less than.
When we let go, our kids step up. As long as we are filling the vacuum, they will default to, “Mom will do it. Dad will take care of that. I don’t have to.”
Recently, a parent shared with me experiencing the pleasure her son had in cleaning up the mess he had made (milk spilled..you know). Instead of doing it herself, she gave him soap, sponge, towels, bucket…and showed him…and then let him do it.
Viola’ ! He continued to clean the floor even after the mess was taken care of — because he could and because she let him! She might have been out laying in her hammock…but, still, you get the idea, right?
Where will you be less than?