How powerless do you feel? Do you feel sometimes that your life is living you? Women have so many things do deal with, to take care of, to be responsible for, that sometimes we just want a new script altogether!
We forget sometimes that we have the lead role in the movie of our lives. Right now maybe we can’t change the script – we can’t magic a new boss, or stop the baby teething, or take our parent’s ailments away – but you know we CAN change how we act out the script – how we live our lives.
And one of the ways we can do this is to look at the small community of people we live with – our family. You know, I think the best service we can give our children is to teach them to be responsible for their own little lives and I don’t think they are ever too young to start.
So let’s take remembering things for school.
My daughters would come home from school and say, “Oh, we need some money for the school photograph,” or “We’re going on a field trip on Thursday and we have to remember to take our boots,” so I would say, “Well, remember then. Write it on a post-it note and put it over your bed or put it on your bedroom door to make sure you remember.”
I’d add, “You see, when it gets to Thursday, I’ve got my own Thursday things to remember. I can’t remember all of yours as well, but you will be able to remember them and if you forget your boots for the field trip, you will miss the field trip. I won’t miss what I’m doing on Thursday, but you are going to miss your field trip. You are the ones who need to remember it.” It makes them into very responsible people.
I believe that it is the job of everyone in the family community to make the household run smoothly. And one of the ways is to devolve responsibility and say to everyone “Look, it’s everybody’s job to make this household run – not only mine. So what are you going to do to help to make this household work?” Everyone was expected to make a ‘family contribution’ which would be particular jobs in the case of children. Every now and again we would have a meeting which we called “Is everybody happy?” where people could bring to the table “This isn’t working,” or “I don’t think this is fair,” or “Why do we have to do that?” and we would talk about it.
The only rule was “is everybody happy?” If everybody is happy, it’s fine. It doesn’t matter whether we are running our house differently to anybody else’s. Everybody in the house has to be happy and if so, then terrific. If not, we need to change something.
So here are two tips:
1 encourage your children to be more responsible for themselves? Remember: don’t do it for them if they are capable of doing it for themselves.
2 look at the family contribution made by EVERYONE in the family?
Who needs to contribute more? Who isn’t contributing at all?
Sessions 3 and 4 of the Reclaim Your Power: Reclaim Your Life Programme look at managing the family differently, the reasons why we don’t delegate at home, and a 10 step process for delegating to children. If you would like more information about how you can access your inner power and transform how you live your life, here’s the link for the Reclaim Your Power: Reclaim Your Life Programme: