Those in the know say that our kids’ education today must be premised on equipping them to ask questions, to probe, to discover and ultimately, be creative and innovate. No rote learning allowed. There are robots for that.
How about the same for us? We must actively question the status quo. Especially when the Universe has given us the perfect environment to be innovative. Too many of us go through life accepting things as they are cause “it’s always been done like this”. Many times, even when it’s clear that it’s not working in our favour.
I’ve decided to make this a two-part blog. Too many questions; some stronger than others. This first part will deal with the ones pertinent to us as individuals.
What am I afraid of?
At the beginning of lockdown, I was distraught. The mere thought of home schooling, work, no domestic help and potentially no food and supplies made my head spin. For days on end. I felt like my world had caved in. But, here I am. Chicken Licken’s sky did not fall in.
Fear is often the gateway to our success. That thing that our heart truly desires is beyond the fear. Yet many of us are never able to push through it.
Fear is just an emotion. Like love, joy, happiness and so on. We give it power. If you are reading this, it means you’ve survived almost two months of lockdown. Congratulations.
Think of surviving lockdown as a right of passage. If you can do lockdown, you can do anything. And now’s the time to try.
What is my measure of success?
I, like many of you, were schooled on the ‘practice makes perfect’ mantra. It’s no surprise that the pursuit of perfection is ingrained into our psyches. It’s why I struggled with parenting for so long; it’s nothing like my expectation.
When you strip away the clothes, accessories, hair, make-up, car and all those other things we may hold as trappings of our success, we may feel bare at first. But once you ease in, it can be quite liberating. It opens you up for real connection. With yourself, and others.
So, what is success for me? It’s definitely evolving. This time has made me relinquish some – not all – of the angst around ‘not getting it perfect’. I am work in progress. I’m embracing motherhood, warts and all. Hey, I could even do this home-schooling thing fulltime. Nope. Just kidding. Not that. My success is intricately linked to the well-being of my family. And those in my inner circle. What’s yours?
What will I do differently?
We’ve been given a reset, a once-in-a-lifetime moment. Simon Sinek says that we need an “infinite mindset”, not to figure out “how we’re going to get through this” but “how we’re going to change to get through this”.
There are already amazing stories of how individuals and companies are pivoting to find new ways to, not only make an income, but to make a difference and thrive beyond. You may have gone into lockdown as a lawyer, but during this time have discovered some other skill or talent that (1) you love and get immense fulfilment from, and (2) could provide an income. I’ve seen some incredible displays of creative talent from my Toohey family. So proud.
Change is a sign of life! Use this opportunity as a portal to something new.
The truth is that home schooling has made me a better parent, even with my mediocre skills and lack of patience. The school head’s recent video assembly on the ‘joy of learning’ encouraged the kids to never give up, persevere until they push through to find the joy. They were thoroughly entertained.
As she got to ‘practice makes…’, and I was anticipating ‘perfect’, she landed a brilliant ‘progress’. Yes! Practice makes progress.
And that’s all we need to do.