The Need to Be Right

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Although less intense than it was in the past, I find that I often want or (more accurately) NEED to be right. Those moments have body markers like a flushed face, discomfort in my gut and an elevated pulse. What I have come to understand (based on these body markers) is that this is more a protective need for *certainty* than wanting to be "in the right" and "correct". And I don't think that this…

My Child, My Report Card

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In speaking with parents and more importantly, in being one myself, I think about pits that we all unintentionally fall into. I say, "fall into", because most parents are really, really doing their darndest and still often find themselves stuck, feeling incompetent and incapable. The pit most recently encountered is seeing my child as My Report Card. Kid is happy and thriving I'm getting…

Ghosted

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I was recently supposed to do a podcast interview and the host did not show up at the agreed upon time. Shortly thereafter, I emailed to check in and see what was up and for a few days heard no response. During that time, I had no idea what had happened but my fear driven mind told me some pretty painful things. My darkest thoughts were along the line of: "When did he discover the *truth* that…

Warning: Parental Advice Coming..

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So, we have a son that is just about to turn 18. And I, like many parents I know, will likely NEVER outgrow the urge to give advice. With elder teen and certainly adult children, a helpful approach (which still allows the parent to still give advice when it cannot be contained) is to acknowledge (in good humor) that the receiving party will probably not want to hear any of this. Something like: “Warning…

Dude, Breathe..

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With another recent run-in with Covid, I was quickly brought back to the impact of fear on my life. What I noticed is the different reactions to it. Some of us activate and blame, others, minimize and dismiss. All of us confront the same fact: At Best, Our Control is VERY Imperfect. How does life change when you accept this fact? Well, for one thing, you allow yourself and others to…

Droopy Leaves and a Child's Needs

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There is this plant on our back porch whose leaves start to droop when it is in need of water. Whenever I see it start to sag (as in the pic) I am happy that it tells me exactly what it needs with such a clear signal. Even more, I love how I am able to easily fulfill its needs with my watering can. It feels good to see how, in just a few hours, it starts to perk up once again. I feel capable and…

Inflation v. Deflation

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Inflation and Deflation are 2 sides of the same coin. It's actually more common (and possibly more damaging?)to be consumed by deflation as it can seem humble and even "righteous". Regardless, both are out of touch with my true worth.

When the Servant Becomes the Master

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I know a young girl that talks and talks. She started talking early and has not stopped. It's almost like she is using language to make sure she is real, that others are there and she is connected to them. And this got me thinking... Words are powerful and so helpful in managing the ongoing overwhelm of being human. When experience is too much, the mind kicks in with all types…

Not That Place...

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It's fascinating (and somewhat frustrating) that the vulnerable place within myself that I protect (and subsequently reject) is the most fertile ground for deep connection with my spouse. Our rejection of this common (human) ground makes us strangers to one another. Our embrace of this common (human) ground creates a bond of acceptance and safety that sustains us for a lifetime.

Injury Becomes Identity

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A child is angrily scolded into submission. Out of fear, he complies, he corrects his behavior, the authority figure is satisfied. And there is a cost. "Injury Becomes Identity" The initial cost is the unseen wound of rejection wrought by the trusted elder's anger (children inherently initially trust adults). And that cost festers. It festers into the child's self perception that he…