My motherhood goal?
I want to put myself OUT of this job.
Woah! That seems like a harsh statement even to me and I wrote the thing.
What on Earth am I talking about?
Don’t I love my kids? Don’t I want what is best for them?
Yes. And Yes.
This is WHY I’m approaching my SAHM (Stay At Home Mom) gig with my eventual pink slip in mind.
If my main goal as a parent is to have confident, independent, positive members of society exit my house upon graduation (or VERY soon thereafter) – then it helps me to line up my thoughts to this goal.
It will help me clearly make the daily decisions and actions that must align with this ultimate overarching goal.
What can I do, right here and right now, that will align with this priority that I’ve made for myself?
Let’s break down the goal and reverse engineer this thing…
CONFIDENT: How can I help my boys develop confidence in themselves? It’s not something I can bestow upon them or give to them like a toy at Christmas. They must develop this themselves: through pursuing their own interests, doing their own work, putting their own effort into something and seeing it through. It’s about them experiencing their own failures and for them to build their own resiliency and grit to get back up and try again and learn from their mistakes.
I’ll tell you what it is NOT about.
It is NOT where I get all the obstacles out of their way to ensure success.
No. No. And NO.
It’s about inviting failure and learning from it. That is how the confidence muscle gets stronger.
This. One. Is. HUGE.
In the past, when I was wrapped up in my future fears concerning how my boys would turn out – a reoccurring theme? – That my kids will end up living in a van down by the river or on my coach when they are 40. These future fears made me crazy-anxious in the present day.
But now I have practiced being present and know I can only control what I do right here and right now.
So, with this knowledge in my mom toolbox, what can I do right here and right now to foster independence in my boys?
CHORES. And lots of them. Not just the take-out-the-trash or pick-up-your-toys chores.
NOPE. Those are the “low-hanging fruit” chores.
I’m such a bad ass mom – I am confident that I can up the ante and my boys will meet the challenges while building confidence (see above section – win/win here!) and appreciation while strengthening their spirit of team work and gratitude.
Yes. It takes more time and energy from me to teach them how to make breakfast and dinner.
Yes. It is faster for me to do the laundry, empty the dishwasher, pick up dog poop, vacuum, dust, (insert any and all jobs formerly reserved for the SAHM to do here).
And Yes. I can do these things while they are at school.
I intentionally wait until they come home for them to practice doing these life skills. I wouldn’t want to take away their sense of accomplishment or independence. And BONUS – they show more appreciation for me when I DO do some of these things for them. We all feel better by doing our part.
And, I get that time back during the day to pursue my passions and generate my happiness instead of doing laundry.
There are so many wins here I’ve lost count!
POSITIVE MEMBER OF SOCIETY:
Providing opportunities for my kids to determine and follow their own passions, do their own work, create their own success, build their own resiliency in the face of failure, and have them pitch in and see that they are part of something bigger than themselves….
These things help them to become a positive member of society.
If I DON’T let them do these things for themselves, then I have NOT gotten myself fired come graduation day.
They’ll still need me to help them function as adults and that is NOT gonna happen on MY watch.
I don’t want to become co-dependent on my kids where I can only feel good if they need me.
I don’t want them to need me – not in these ways.
I want us to share a loving, caring relationship with mutual respect.
I can’t have that if I don’t take steps today to set that up for our future.
So yes. I’m working hard for that motherhood pink slip!
And I can help you do the same…
Let’s meet when you are NOT doing your laundry and get something on your to-do list that is just for you!