Chores- let's talk about it. Chores were a point of frustration and friction in my home, not because my children would not do them; I divested from power struggles. The number of times I had to remind them throughout the day irritated me. It was the little things, like snack bar wrappers on the floor, paper towels after hand washing, preparing food and not cleaning up, etc. We are home most days, and the number of times I had to remind and then wait until they were available to pick up the mess irritated my soul. That irritation got in the way
of the essential healing work we were doing together during other challenging moments. I had to REDUCE FRICTION to increase my internal resources available to show up and do the work in challenging moments. This has worked beautifully, given me more personal success in those moments, and helped me build more stable habits around showing up more authentically when things are hard. Also, the children are showing more intrinsic motivation for cleaning, so that's a significant plus. We will revisit assigned chores one day when we are ready.
Conscious Parenting from moment to moment- That shit was exhausting, honestly. I didn't have it in me anymore, and we were hitting the same walls we had been hitting for years. Why? Because healing is not linear, it takes time and real-world application to help shift. If I accept every single invitation to heal from each one of my children ALL DAY LONG… I'm done, done. I'm worn the fuck out. That is discouraging, and I can no longer do it effectively and authentically. Instead, I choose one area where my wound and their need/challenge intersect, and I focus on the area until we have made a decent amount of progress in it. Then we move on to the next, or we take a break. What do I do instead of Conscious Parenting in other challenging (outlying) moments? I live into my values without the mental load of trying to check all the other boxes. My values are easier to access and come from my authentic power so, they flow with ease and reassure me. Therefore, outlying moments are met with justice and joy, my two values. Is this moment more appropriate for considering justice, adding joy, or doing both, easy. It feels good and doesn't tax me as much as approaching it from a "Conscious Parenting" space. What this does is help me to be more consistent and regulated in difficult moments.
Not putting me first- Now, I have known for a very long time that I have to meet my needs first in order to meet my children's needs. However, I lose my way from season to season. I have found my way again, and taking care of myself is the first thing I do every morning. It works. The most important thing you do is take care of yourself. You cannot show up how you want to show up or model good boundaries and taking care of yourself without actually taking care of yourself. Also, the kids don't care if I make dinner late because I desperately need some time to myself to feel better. They know where the pantry is and how to feed themselves; I give snacks and turn on a movie for the toddler. I have remembered that nobody feels good when I forget to take care of myself, which leaks out onto them.
Trust your intuition. Don't be afraid to trust yourself and experiment with what works for your family. This conscious parenting journey should be expansive, not shrink you into a dogmatic box of This or That. I have things that I won't do or accept. Those things are hit, yell, and abuse emotionally. Most other things are fluid as I learn my own parenting style.