Venti with almond milk and a splash of accountability, please!
Accountability is brewed together with perfectionism. This morning I decided to sleep in – 6:51 AM instead of 5:30 AM as usual. Mornings with my kids start around 7ish. My first thought when I woke up was “I am taking care of myself to sleep in a bit today.” As soon as I left my room, my daughter announced, “It’s cold.” “I didn’t sleep well.” “I am hungry, Mami.” The angry mom ogre started to scratch my back and whisper in my ear “ Why does she have to wake up complaining about life?” Begrudgingly, I went straight to mom mode before preparing my cup of coffee, there was no time for the morning workout. On top of it all, it’s like she knows what conversation topics get on my nerves when I am already regretting sleeping in. She doesn’t do it on purpose, but she’s got a gift for it, I swear. I could have snapped at her. I could have yelled. I could have given her the silent treatment. I could have complained, “Why are you always complaining, you should be grateful!” But. Today, I stated, “I don’t want to talk about this right now.” She continued to complain about the burnt edges of pancakes. I replied, “Sometimes, some pieces are burnt. Eat what you’d like. I need to make my coffee.”
Today, I recognized, this is her. She has inherited the lovely family trait of highlighting the negatives over the positives. I am the one acting differently today. I chose to use that hour to sleep instead of the workout. I chose to not make the coffee because I prepared breakfast instead. I later explained that I was moody because I know myself and how important my morning hour is to me. This is what accountability looks like. Recognizing my role in the situation instead of blaming the bad morning on my kid.
With my therapy clients, I deconstruct the esoteric view of parenting and relationships to the itty bitty practical how-to’s. It helps to have insight and a plan of action to carry it out. Holding yourself accountable for your actions and reactions is key to a successful relationship with yourself and others.
By the way, I hope you can pick up on all the perfectionist tendencies here. That how I choose the first hour of my day makes a world of a difference to me. That complaining bothers me instead of chalking it up to “ she’s just being a kid”. I needed to be aware of setting boundaries with my daughter and myself. All of this during the first hour of the day. And how often do we not catch ourselves, and the fighting ensues, we shame the kids for their behavior, we feel guilty for another day of power struggles. Resentful for putting ourselves last. You know how it goes. But, it doesn’t have to go that way. Try it out and if you need help with that, please reach out. I am here to support you and your family.