Readers of yesterday’s post (below) will know that I was exploring the idea of being results-oriented or process-oriented in my parenting.  The idea being that focussing solely on results (obedience, being heeded, etc.) eclipses the opportunity for greater learning, self-awareness and connection with my children.  I hypothesised that, as in Yoga, transformation might occur during the process, the in-between bits, so perhaps they are worth noticing.

Today after a 23 hour experiment, I am here to report that one of the fruits of noticing the process when I am with my children is a general slowing down.  And this slowing down engendered a greater self-awareness.  In one example from yesterday, my second child was cross because I was taking my eldest to the shop to buy her a belt.  The trousers she’s brought to Granny’s house are too big and are falling down, and since we have limited clothes here I agreed to purchase a belt.  The younger child said, “What about me?” I said, “Well, what do you need?” She said, “I don’t need anything. I just want something.”

Now, usually I’d probably snap, “Well why are you asking for something then?!” But this time, because I was reacting a little bit slower and also checking in with myself, I behaved differently.  My thoughts were these:

No she doesn’t need anything. But how nice that she was honest when I know she struggles with being truthful sometimes. Quite a clever answer actually. But why buy superfluous things when we don’t need them?

Checking in with my own thoughts meant that I could select the ones I chose to voice, rather than knee-jerk snapping at her, which would result in her feeling even more excluded.  I ended up telling her how much I appreciated her honest answer and that I would see if I could find something.  Who knew that it’s so hard to find a single belt? You have to buy the jeans that go with it. So I bought the smaller size jeans, which my younger daughter was delighted with, and I gave the belt to her elder sister.

This is my blog, so I can pick and choose which scenarios I share with you! Sometimes it didn’t go like this, especially when I was under pressure from all three children or when noise levels were high, but the point is that I wasn’t so snappish and I didn’t find myself feeling quite as helpless as I often do.  In fact, if anything I felt more connected.  The experiment continues into day 2 today.

Try it for yourself and let me know how you get on.  Sending you all love and compassion today.





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Results v process part II
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2 thoughts on “Results v process part II

  • 03/11/2011 at 10:02 pm

    Enjoyed this whole thread. I had a realisation (small ‘r’!) the other day, whilst working with some of the ideas from Siblings without Rivalry, that I had been using the books suggestions to ‘make things better’ to ‘help things work out’ so that my discomfort about my girls fighting/ arguing would stop, loading the way I used the suggestions or approached a situation. It was liberating to help my elder daughter acknowledge and express her feelings without this act having to have any outcome or expectation added onto it. This was how it felt for her and maybe she’d feel better in a bit or maybe she wouldn’t , but the feeling or situation didn’t have to be ‘solved’. She did actually feel better! Hope my rambling makes sense.

    • 04/11/2011 at 8:40 am

      Hello Eve, it’s good to hear your comments. I’ve noticed since I wrote those two posts, it’s much harder to slow down when there are so many things to be achieved. Being in a rush is one of the main causes of my impatience with the children. I can relate to your feelings of discomfort, and just wanting the fighting between the children to stop– I sense those feelings in myself too. And I agree that it can be liberating to let go of expectation, but when I’m rushed I tend to revert to old patterns!
      And yes, your rambling does make sense! Would love to hear more of it!
      Thanks again for commenting.

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