Parenting is not for cowards. What does this mean?
It is important to look at parenting as a business, else the journey will go down the drain. Parenting becomes a struggle because they always assume that they know it all. You need to understand that parenting is a big deal and until we understand this fact, we will continue to treat it as something not relevant. When we were growing up, we were told “just have children” assuming that everything will just be okay. The moment you have children, the real work starts. Another lie is “just do what works for you”, the truth is that being a parent is not easy and you need to recognise that to be able to do a lot more with your journey. Parenting is a big deal because of the following reasons.
1. You need to understand that you are different from the Person you are parenting: This person you are parenting wants autonomy and you also want autonomy so that clashes. You therefore need to know a lot for you to be able to handle this. There is a lot of demand on you and you need to parent from a place of know-how else you will continue to struggle through the journey. The basic things you need to handle this issue of autonomy are self-motivation, competence and relatedness.
2. The concept of time is usually not real for the children you are parenting in comparison to you as an adult. This is because you are not on the same developmental level with them, and so it can make things difficult. The true reason is found in the executive function skills, frontal lobe, working memory and attention. These are all developing throughout childhood, so the neural transmission is physically slower in children. The frontal lobe finishes developing in adulthood between 25 to 26 years, and at that stage, time is perceived to go by faster and is encoded more accurately.
3. Being a parent can make you act in a way that is not true to your core character. You will be worried, and you will be afraid. Worry and fear are the two most common emotions that parents experience, yet parenting is one of the most amazing experiences in the world. Parenting is controlled by the Galanin Neuropeptide, these are the neurons involved in many brain functions like responding to harm, sleep-wake cycles, understanding, moods, blood pressure regulation amongst others. When we become parents, our brain actually changes, this is a big deal.
There is actually a brain function of being a parent. We actually develop parental behaviours that come from genetic programming, so our feeling of responsibility increases as we have a new life to care for. Based on this, researchers believe that experiencing Postpartum depression is as a result of something going wrong with the developmental cycles of the neurons.
4. Failure is hard to watch. It is generally hard to see our child fail, and this can cause anxiety and fears. It is completely normal for you to want your child to have everything and get through life without any scratch. This approach, however, does not teach them anything because life is not perfect. There are challenges in life that your children need to overcome for the to become resilient and more likely to developed.
5. The Underdeveloped brain of the child. Parents get frustrated with their children’s behaviour most times because they want their children to do certain things and they are unable to do it. For instance, a child not being to control their behaviour because they lack self-regulation. It is easier to be understanding when a toddler puts a toy to your face or screams at you, but it gets harder when your child is over five and does same, these skills increase as your child gets older, the neural paths are created but children lag behind and the parents will begin to realise that they are no longer in sync. Many times, the culprit of unwanted behaviours that parents fight in their children are actually found in the underdeveloped part of the executive functioning skills.
WHAT THEN CAN WE DO TO MAKE PARENTING EASIER
• Learn what is good for your child not what works for you. I always tell the parents in the Inner Circle (our yearly program in TIP, click here to learn more about this program), that parenting is not an emergency and if you make it an emergency it will overwhelm you.
What works for you might not be good for your child, remember that your child is the one that is the CHILD. Stop spreading the false theory of “do what works for you” it is not about what works for you but what is good your child. So, always take time to ask yourself; “what is good for my child?”. What is the thing that works for the child?
• You need to become intentional about your journey. This means that you should begin to learn a lot of things as regards parenting. If you are not intentionally teaching and parenting your children, something else is teaching them. People usually ask: “how can I become intentional?” Our value system is one of the major problems; we go on making excuses like “I do not have time to sit with my children”, “I cannot read”, “I already know this” whenever suggestions are made. It is the attitude of refusing to learn that makes majority of the parents in the Sex Educate your Child like a Pro Challenge shocked and have no idea on the things that are taught there. Get access to 5 replays and 4 Workbooks from the Challenge here
For instance, I shared during one of the sessions that the skills that your children need to survive are not on the television. I also shared that healthy, good children do not just happen, they are built and created in a healthy home and it takes an intentional process. Is your home healthy enough to build your children into what you want them to become? How do you intend to intentionally educate your child if you are not learning and your knowledge bank is dry? You cannot intentionally parent your child if you are not thinking through the process. Intentionality is the bedrock to ensure that you are successful in your parenting journey and to ensure that the journey is not hard. If I am asked if parenting is hard, my response will be “Parenting is not about it being hard or not it is a RESPONSIBILITY!”
• You need to understand that parenting is about you and not your child. That is my favourite quote from my book Connect to Correct. When you understand that parenting is first about you, you will begin to ask yourself questions like “what do I know?”. You cannot give what you do not have, you need to understand that this journey is about the things you invest in yourself, you need to learn to motivate yourself, learn how to find solutions and grow. Until you grow, your children cannot grow. It is only the biological growth in your child that you cannot trigger, every other growth in a child is triggered. Ask yourself “what have I done for me?”
• You need knowledge, you need to learn parenting. Parenting is a learnt skill; it is not an assumed skill. If you assume parenting, you make a mess of your journey. Knowledge is a prerequisite for raising a 21st century child, it is one of the key skills you need. The more knowledge you do not have, the more challenges you will have.
GET Access To The Replay Of The SEX EDUCATION CHALLENGE HERE
Again, PARENTING is not for COWARDS, it is for people who are thinking. Parenting is about going through the process; it is not about tips and hacks. If you are not going through the process, the things we share will not make sense to you. You need to determine the process you are supposed to walk through in your parenting journey. Are you aware of what you need and what process you need to start?
The place of Fathers in bringing about societal transformation cannot be overemphasized. We are in this crisis today as a Nation because we have men who lack proper understanding of servant leadership and intentional parenting. Just sitting to talk without corresponding action will not give us the desired results. It is expedient and urgent we rise and take the necessary steps towards holistic transformation.
The Intentional Parents Fathers Conference by Wendy Ologe is one platform that is committed to changing the narratives when it comes to building intentional Fathers. This year’s conference promises to be another explosive experience as we expose ourselves to learning that will bring about reformation. Invite every father and potential fathers around you to this life transforming experience. Make sure they register and attend.I will be speaking alongside world class coaches in this field. Don’t miss it for anything.
Date : 18th – 20th June, 2021
This conference is FREE but REGISTRATION is required! Register HERE
Create your personalized DP after registration HERE
Episode 10: Your Emotions and Your Parenting – Relationship Bites With Wendy Ologe