Being a seeker of personal development and transformation I found my way to life coaching. I discovered that it was a serious practice that could transform me on every level because it went directly to the source of my problems: my thinking. Coaching revealed how my negative thoughts and perceptions created all my feelings and impacted all the actions I took, including how I showed up as parent. I learned concepts and tools that I could use in a practical, powerful way to create the results I wanted in my life.
Becoming a “conscious” parent
As I became deeply involved in life coaching–first as a student/client and then as a Certified Life Coach–I saw how my automatic and unintentional thoughts and feelings impacted all my relationships. My attitudes, judgements, worries, attempts to control—didn’t help my daughter and certainly didn’t bring us closer together. In fact, it was feeding into her negative teen-age brain causing her to resist and react. Then, I blamed her “impossible” behavior for “causing” me react, yell, criticize. UGH! I wanted to be a calm, non-reactive Mom but we kept falling in the same argumentative, conflict-ridden patterns—until I really started practicing taking full responsibility for my part in the relationship.
How to Be The Parent Your Teen Needs
When I took ownership for getting “triggered” and reacting my relationship with my daughter began to change. I practiced under-reacting instead of overreacting; I noticed when my thoughts were creating anxiety, not the circumstances I was facing; I worked on communicating in calmer, less intense way; I accepted responsibility for my role in arguments; I stopped catastrophizing about her life and trusted more in her unique path. I worked on undoing the conditioning I gained from growing up with my parents.
Over time a significant shift has occurred. It’s an ongoing process, but both my daughter and I are transforming. If she becomes upset, anxious (and if these feelings caused her to lash out), I stay focused and committed on how I wanted to respond instead of reacting. If it means taking a 20-30 minute “time out” for me to resolve my emotions that’s what I do! And there are so many more tools to share about parenting with intention to create more love and less drama.