But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded. 2 Chronicles 15:7
Ever feel like quitting? As parents, we often have days when we fail and just feel like throwing in the towel. Of course, we don’t because we can’t run away from home, but still, the feeling of hopelessness and helplessness is there.
I felt that way recently. Something happened that made me question myself and my ability and I took it hard. I doubted myself and was ready to give up on something.
But I have learned one thing in all my years of living and parenting: It’s best not to make decisions in the emotion of the moment. Let yourself emote, then ask yourself, “What can I learn from this?” “How will this make me a better parent or person?”
Feel sorry for yourself, then get some answers. That’s what I did. I emailed someone who I knew had an objective viewpoint on my situation. I didn’t get a shoulder to cry on, I got someone who could speak truth to me and that’s just what they did. I came away thinking, I can do this. It will take work and time, but I CAN do this.
When you are ready to give up, when something happens to set you back and make you question yourself, do these 3 things:
- Step 1: Give yourself a short amount of time to grieve. Obviously the bigger the disappointment, the longer the grief period. But set a time limit. For me, it was a few hours of feeling low. It may only be 15 minutes for you or it may be longer. But allow yourself a certain amount of time and after that, move on to step 2.
- Step 2: Ask yourself “Who do I need to talk to to hear truth?” Not who you need to get sympathy from (that should happen in Step 1) but who can you ask for objective and honest feedback? Then ask.
- Step 3: Ask yourself, “What can I learn from this? What do I need to do next to move forward?” The person I got feedback from actually gave me some suggestions for moving forward and I’m moving in that direction. But if your person didn’t, then ask yourself this question until you come up with 2-3 specific ways to progress.
As you walk through these steps, you are not only learning and growing, you are modeling to your athlete how to deal with setbacks. Try walking him or her through these steps the next time failure rears its ugly head.
Parents, if you need help in your parenting, I’m a life coach for parents. I would love to chat with you about any challenges you are facing and areas where you may be stuck. Email me at email@example.com