As a mother of young children, I used to feel like I had been tricked into living a paradox. I was constantly busy, but simultaneously bored. I never got a moment to myself, yet I was very lonely. I understood that the work I was doing was the most important work on the planet, and still I felt unfulfilled. In one moment I’d feel overwhelming gratitude and love, and in the next moment I was frustrated and resentful. See? Tricked.
If you can relate to this roller coaster of emotions, you know it is an exhausting and confusing way to live your life. But I have amazing news for you! You don’t have to wait for your kids to behave better in order to get off of the roller coaster. You don’t need your husband to change or your house to be bigger or cleaner. You don’t need anything outside of you to change. All you need is to pay attention to what is happening in your mind.
Our minds are amazingly powerful. Once I learned to pay attention to what I was believing about myself and my life, I discovered I could choose thoughts that empowered and inspired me instead of the tension-filled ones that were happening by impulse.
As a Momologist and life coach, I teach my clients that a belief is simply a thought that you keep thinking. The majority of our thoughts are playing in our subconscious minds, so we don’t notice them. But if we choose to take a look at what’s happening in there, we see that our thoughts are often illogical, and many of them keep us stuck. The good news is that every thought you have is optional. No, really—every single one. But you have to be aware of them before you can choose the ones that will serve you best.
Today I want to offer you five beliefs, or thoughts, you might not have considered before. Try them on, and if some of them feel right and good to you, then create a way to remind yourself to think them every day and ultimately they will become the new beliefs playing in your subconscious mind. Create a new system of beliefs, and you will literally create a new reality in your life.
- It’s not your job to make your kids happy.
If a part of you believes it is your job, stop and consider that for a moment. Your kids get to decide how they want to feel. Sometimes they don’t want to be happy. Furthermore, we do them a huge disservice by not allowing them to develop the ability to access positive emotions on their own. If they believe happiness comes from people and events outside of themselves, they will struggle to find consistent peace of mind.
I like to remind myself that I can offer happiness to my children by teaching them about making good choices, loving them unconditionally, and teaching them to navigate the world, but ultimately they get to decide how they want to feel. My job is to provide them a safe place to experience an entire range of emotions. This belief will set you free.
- There are no rules about how to do any of this.
As human beings, we pay attention to people around us and create a lot of rules for ourselves based on what we see. “Don’t be like that lady,” or “Everyone seems to do this, so it must be the best way.” When you allow yourself to question the norm and make decisions based on your own internal compass, you’ll create a life that is more ideal for you and your own family.
There are no rules about whether or not your child should go to preschool or how long you should allow them to sleep in your bed. There is no rule about whether you should make dinner or order take-out. There’s no “right” way to discipline, and there is nothing that says you’re not a good mom if you don’t want to volunteer at the school or play trucks and dolls with your kids. Seriously. There is agency and there is instinct and there is what feels good and right and loving for you. But there are no rules.
- It’s only money.
After worrying about their children, the number one thing my clients worry about is money. There is a lot of work we do to move out of scarcity and into an abundant mindset and life, but the first step is to recognize that it is only money. It’s only math. We are the ones who make it mean something painful when we believe it is hard to get, that there isn’t enough, or that we’re not good with it.
Furthermore, many of us have bought into the belief that our household income is somehow tied to our worth. Logically we know this is not true, but the messaging we have all been bombarded with since birth has made it a belief many people have a hard time relinquishing. It’s only money. It’s not a measure of your personal value. And you are good with money. Money is just math, and it’s simple math at that. There is plenty of money in the world, and you are beyond capable of inviting an abundance of it into your life. Begin here. It’s only money.
- It’s not your kids’ job to make you happy.
The day I had this realization was a bittersweet day for me because I suddenly began to see the truth. My two-year-old is supposed to have tantrums, and I am in charge of how I feel about it. My pre-teens are going to try to sass me, and if I make it mean they don’t appreciate me, then that’s my choice—but it’s on me.
I still believe that an important part of my job is teaching my children what is acceptable, implementing appropriate rewards or consequences, and guiding them to understand how their behavior may affect them or their lives, but they are not responsible for making me feel anything.
If I want to feel at peace when my kids misbehave, that’s up to me. If I want to feel sad when they are suffering, I can as well. If I want to love them even when they are mad at me, that’s absolutely within my ability, and it’s up to me to tap into that love. I get to choose. Sometimes I choose to be angry, frustrated, or worried, but I tell myself the truth: I’m feeling whatever I’m feeling because of me—not because of them.
- Everything is figure-out-able.
No, that’s not a real word, but I think it should be. Because everything truly is. Our minds don’t tend to think this during challenging times. Instead our minds tell us things like, This is hard, or I don’t know if I can do this. We think these thoughts are just observations, but they are actually beliefs our minds choose because then they can shut down and not work too hard. And I’m not suggesting this means we are lazy or that anything is wrong. The mind is designed to be efficient, so it’s always going to seek the easiest path if we don’t re-direct it.
But when a challenge arises in our lives, we need to be able to tap into the amazing creativity and problem-solving capacity each of us has, and choosing to believe that everything is figure-out-able opens the mind up and provokes us to seek answers rather than giving up and staying stuck. We live in the age of Google and YouTube. I believe that we also have access to a Heavenly Father who will guide us beyond our natural abilities. Everything truly is figure-out-able. It’s not hard. You do know what to do. Trust me.
Listen up, friend. What you think about matters. It matters more than you probably realize. If you think something enough times, it becomes a habit—just like brushing your teeth. Why not create thought habits that feel good? Thought habits that empower and inspire you? Thought habits that make you feel like the person you are striving to become? You can do this, and you deserve it!
QUESTION: Which of these five beliefs or thoughts feel good or right to you?
CHALLENGE: Decide which positive thought habit you want to implement, and create a reminder so that your thoughts become more deliberate.
Edited by Briana Heinonen and Katie Carter.
Image from Pixabay; graphics by Anna Jenkins.
For additional help from Jody, check out her free program 30 Days to Killer Confidence.