Monday, January 27, 2014

Parenting Insecurities

Gathered with new found friends over the weekend. Turns out, we all had one thing in common: parenthood. Single dad of a teen girl, a hardworking single mother of three kids over 10 and the hubby and I raising three little ones. My husband asked the room to share their biggest parenting insecurity. What was the gist of all four answers?

What if I get it wrong! 

Dice it how you wish, we're all fearful that one thing will screw it all up. Whether you're a busy parent, an impatient parent, a tired parent or the all too common parent with parent issues of your own, all parents make mistakes no matter how much we obviously love our children. Every parent is human and in our human imperfections we dwell. Chances are we beat ourselves up contemplating these imperfections.

As the debate went on, we asked about the one thing we feel we do right as parents. We could only pick one thing. Here the answers varied, but they empowered us. The whole conversation got me thinking about how to calm the parenting insecurities we all eventually feel. 

1. Commit to learning and growing; always be willing to better your parenting skills. This is the area I find as my number 1 strength. I am always researching, reading and learning how I can be better as a parent. That in and of itself soothes the feeling of insecurity and doubt. Knowing that I am in control of my ability to improve empowers me.

2. Don't beat yourself up. Stop focusing on what isn't and what can't be. Focus on the things you can do. If you're a busy, hardworking parent, push guilt aside during those long work hours away. Worrying is pointless and what you can do here is be fully present in the limited moments you are with your child(ren). Being truly present makes all the difference with children.

3. Be honest with your children about your insecurities. Show your child the part of you that feels doubt and worry. Your example reminds them that no one, not even the parent they most likely idolize, has all the perfect answers. When I'm being honest with my children about personal insecurities not only am I connecting authentically, but I am teaching them to be gentle and honest with themselves. Together, we learn to be patient and kind with ourselves, first!  Take that insecurities!

4. Stop comparing yourself to other parents! That's just a recipe for insecurities. We don't ever know how other families really live. No one is ever as perfect as they seem. If you base my life on Instagram my kids never fight and I never lose my cool. Wrong! Remember:

5. Blame someone else. HA! I kid, I kid. Just felt we needed a number 5! 
So you tell us #5... how do you ease parental insecurities?
We seriously want to hear from you.

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