What if Parenting is Really About Our Personal Growth?

What if a key point of parenting is personal growth? Being more connected and loving to ourselves and to those around us. Realizing the things we are doing/saying or not doing/saying that could use some fine-tuning or a major tune-up.

“While we try to teach our children about life, our children teach us what life is really about.”

Angela Schwindt

For me, parenthood has definitely been a gateway to growth. And this growth has flowed into other relationships in my life as well.

Here are a few of those life lessons that keep crossing my path:

Image of sunset with list of personal growth lessons from parenting

Four Parenting Lessons That Led to My Personal Growth

  1. How we communicate really matters. Thanks to thought leaders like Brene Brown and John Gottman, I try hard to avoid blaming statements, criticism and shaming others. Here’s a recent blog post I wrote about how simply starting conversations with “I” instead of “you” can change the whole conversation.
  2. The only person we can control is ourselves, but that can be really powerful. When I feel triggered by something or someone, I pause and try to ground myself instead of reacting. Then, with a level head, I choose how to respond.  I’ve noticed that when I stay grounded in these moments, the outcome shifts.
  3. Notice and feel our emotions instead of avoiding, ignoring or burying them. Once I dug into my own Emotional Intelligence, I was better able to help my kids manage their difficult emotions in a healthy way.
  4. Gratitude. My oldest daughter turns 13 this week. 13! Our time as parents and our time on this planet are limited. As you may have noticed in my blog, family dinner has become a special time for my family to connect. Here are a few recent topics that help us stay focused on how very lucky we are.

Family Dinner Topics for Reflection and Connection

 So yes, we are going to goof up as parents, friends, partners, spouses and co-workers. But those mistakes that resurface again and again open a door to growth if we decide to dig in. In what ways has parenting or life inspired your personal growth? Please share!

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Published by Jessica Speer, Author

Author and Advocate for Kids and Families

Please share! I welcome your thougths and comments.

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