Conflicting Goals

I’ve just put the kids to sleep.  Wow.  What an afternoon.  The four year old spent quite a large percentage of time between 6pm and 7pm crying because she didn’t want rice for dinner.  After I begrudgingly whacked a can of beans on toast in front of her, she not only ate the beans but surprise, surprise ate the RICE!! FIGURE IT OUT PEOPLE!!!

I’m Laura and I am a mum, studying Coaching Psychology at Sydney University  (remotely) and currently living in Singapore (it’s been 3 months).

I hope to contribute to the life saving blog that Orange Peel is with a few bits of my experiences and some of the great concepts I’ve learnt at uni..god bless the psychology faculty!  Just stuff to chew on.

My first installment is about a simple concept called ‘conflicting goals’.  I realized the other day how this contributes to the quiet anxiety I feel on an ongoing basis.  Trying to meet two goals at the same time. See, even though I blame it on the kids (it’s a mother’s right to) the truth is I do hold responsibility for a significant share of the stress I create in my life. 

Like today, I decided to check my emails while the four year old (yes, that is her name ‘the-four-year-old’) was hanging off me asking if she could look at ABC Kids on the Internet.  After a few minutes of whining (and holding myself back from thumping her on the head with the laptop….I have a suppressed violent streak)  I turned the computer off. Simple. No more stress.  Conflicting goals eliminated.  I then opened up a space for the 4 year old to tell me what she wanted to do. Draw and cut out cupcakes was the response.  Not exactly my idea of a night out but hey, it’s what they pay me for (that’s right they don’t pay me…possibly my next installment).

So I call on you sisters (and brothers) to shine a torch on the tension in your life and consider the conflicting goals that arise in your day. Whether big or small they may be adding more pain than gain to your life. Be brave. Switch one goal off and open up the space for what really matters.  It may be your 4 year old.  Or it may simply be you.

Until next time,

Give Up Positive Thinking, Embrace Healthy Release of Feelings and Experience Zest

It was a week before my daughter, nearly 5, started kindergarten.  We were in a cafe and she kept whining she wanted something to eat.  She'd just had berries and babycino and there was an apple in front of her.  Nothing was really going to fill her up - she was already full - of feelings that needed to be let out.

She picked up a metal menu holder and threw it.  I picked her up and took her outside.  She began to scream and shout and though at first she was in my arms, she became too physical for me to hold and I put her down where she rolled around on the ground.  I kept close and kept watch.  She was doing a great job of letting all those feelings out that were keeping her off-track and disconnected and unco-operative.

Now I know what a good tantrum feels like.  Amazing.  I had one today with a Listening Partner listening to me, because I felt real disappointed about an event that had to be cancelled.  And as I was having it I realised just how good it is.  I cried out, it's not fair over and over, hit the bed and screamed.  I felt the disappointment melt away.

Ever since I'd read The Aware Baby  by Aletha Solter and the Parenting by Connection booklets written by Patty Wipfler from Hand in Hand, I'd been aware of the benefits of crying, tantruming, laughing, trembling and shaking with the attention of an adult close by.

Yes, benefits!