Simple Inquiry for Parents is a continuing series of discussions that gradually build on each other to deepen your understanding and intentions in parenting and life.
One of the most direct ways to address parenting issues is through asking some simple questions. Inquiry is not a new process; people have always asked questions of themselves and others. The key to inquiring in a way that is helpful is in your own willingness to open your mind and see truth beyond what you currently comprehend. Much like a child who asks a question about why the sky is blue, questioning our own beliefs and ways of being can be a naturally curious process. Enjoy the journey.
Since duality is the nature of our universe, there are always at least two questions you have answers for in any moment. What don’t I want to be experiencing? What do I want to be experiencing? It’s often easy to know what we don’t want and many parents find themselves in a continual state of resisting what they are experiencing. Sometimes it can be a struggle to see what we do want – and we might even wonder why we would want to know since it’s not currently happening.
Start by looking for the opposite of what you don’t want. Here are some examples…
- I don’t want my kids to fight transforms into I do want my kids to learn how to problem solve.
- I don’t want to always feel tired transforms into I do want to get rest and feel like I can make it through the day.
- I don’t want to argue with my partner transforms into I do want to enjoy each other.
- I don’t want to listen to my baby/toddler/child crying/whining transforms into I do want to feel okay regardless of how my child feels.
- I don’t want to yell or be yelled at transforms into I do want to talk and be talked to in a respectful manner and tone.
- I don’t want to hate parenting transforms into I do want to appreciate every minute of parenting, even when it’s tough.
It becomes easier to determine what you do want with practice. Take a few moments now to print this form or draw a line down the middle of a sheet of paper, label the column on the left “What I DON’T want in parenting and life”, label the column on the right “What I DO want in parenting and life”, and answer these questions about your current parenting and family experience.
Allow yourself to be open and honest, leave nothing out, and revise the answers as you grow. They will provide valuable perspective and information for you to begin focusing on what you do want while you bring it about.
Are you struggling as a parent? If so, I’d like to share something with you: a story and some hope.