One of the discovery questions I ask during my coaching intake session is, “What type of parent are you?” This gets clients to think. Most people will admit they are not the parent they want to be. They then list all the things they are doing wrong that make them a terrible parent. The point of the question is not for one to condemn themselves. The point is to determine your ideal parenting style and what steps you need to take to ensure you are headed in that direction or if you’ve already arrived at how to maintain it.
When we think of parenting, we’re conditioned to believe in gentle, old-school, or cultural ways of parenting. While these may have been how we determine our parenting styles in the past, it does not have to reflect our future. If we allow others, society, and social media to control how we view our parenting, we miss opportunities to reveal to our children who we are. Parenting should come from a space of what you want to instill in your children, to help build your legacy, and enjoy with your family.
Here’s an exercise for you. Take about 15- 30 minutes. For the first 10, close your eyes and envision what an ideal day of parenting would look like for you. Where are you, who’s there, what are you doing? After the 10 minutes, open your eyes, grab a piece of paper, and write down what you envisioned. Read your writing and determine if these could be your parenting goals. For example, when I close my eyes, I see my kids and I on a beach in Jamaica. When I opened my eyes, I wrote about sitting together on the sand, looking out into the water, eating seafood, and enjoying each other’s company. Is this possible? Yes! I immediately contacted a travel agent and started looking at the cost and what we would all need (i.e., passports) to make this vision a reality.
What is your vision? Is it possible? Are you willing to do the work to give it a try?