THE BLOG
01/16/2015 03:52 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

This Is How to Win at Parenting and Life

I posted this image a few months ago:

A photo posted by Glennon Melton (@momastery) on

Thank you for this meme, Flying Yogini!

And here's what I wrote with it.

NEW PLAN OF ACTION:

You know that voice in your head that's always telling you that you're not a good enough woman, man, wife, husband, mother, father, friend, artist, worker, giver, human? Let's retrain that voice today.

Let's practice speaking to our self kindly and with respect -- like we would speak to a good friend. We need to make friends with ourselves. We are stuck with our self ALL DAY, so let's be kinder, gentler, more amusing company. Let's take our own hand and say, "There, there, sister. You're doing a good job. I'm proud of how you're handling all this craziness down here. Don't give up. Carry on, warrior." Life is a long journey. Let's become better traveling companions to our self.

HERE'S THE PLAN: TODAY -- when we lose our temper with the kids, when we accidentally eat that third brownie, when we don't send that thank you card for the fortieth day in a row, when we forget to stop at the gym, when we're late for that meeting -- anytime and every time we fall short of the ridiculous expectations we put on ourselves -- we are going to say to our sweet, well-meaning selves:

"Whatever. I'm fabulous anyway."

That's grace. TODAY we shall offer ourselves GRACE and see how THAT goes. Let's make friends with our selves. We deserve to have a good, kind, gracey friend. We can BE that friend to ourselves.

We must practice believing that we are deserving of Love and forgiveness. We are. Life is Forever Tries.

Love,
G

WELL, a few months later... LOOK what Mama Kristy sent me!

Dear G:

Thought you would appreciate seeing the note I taped to my daughter's saxophone this morning (after driving 40 minutes round trip to retrieve it) to salvage a crappy situation made crappier by my reaction. The irony is that normally I am headed to work but today I was off and looking forward to 6 glorious hours of nothing and now I only had 5 hours and 20 minutes of it.

But reading your blog gave me an idea that turned this situation into a bonding teachable moment instead.... you are making a difference one family at a time..... Much love to you and thanks.

Kristy

momastery

VICTORY!! WARRIOR MAMA! SUPERHERO -- FORGIVING HER KID & HERSELF IN ONE SINGLE BOUND!!!

You guys -- here's my hunch: we think we're somehow being good parents if we beat ourselves up for every mistake. As if guilt and hemming and hawing and self-doubt = LOVE. But one of the many problems with this belief is that this critical voice we use to berate ourselves becomes our kids' internal voice, too. They learn that the way to love people is: Try to be perfect for them and then when you're not -- make yourself miserable in their honor. BOOOOOO. Bad plan! Horrible plan! Not love! What if every single time something went wrong -- we did what Kristy did? What if we just GOT OVER IT? Got funny about it? What if we lived in a constant state of radical, relentless forgiveness? (Grace.)

Might our kids end up with a kinder, gentler, funnier, less neurotic inner voice? Might we?

Would our kids learn that actually, love is just showing up as you are, trying, making mistakes, and then trying again? Would we?

Go forth and forgive ALL THE PEOPLE WHO ARE MOSTLY DOING THE BEST THEY CAN, ESPECIALLY YOU!!!!

This post originally appeared on Momastery.

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