Parenting Problems = Outdated Programming
If you’re like most parents, you probably struggle with outdated parenting programming.
In fact, if you and your teen are struggling in your relationship, chances are this is a sign that you have some old programming that is no longer serving you.
#1 Don’t Be Ashamed
You don’t need to be ashamed of your old parenting programming.
Feeling shame about yourself isn’t going to help you create the change that you are looking for.
So, rather than feeling ashamed, be grateful that your old programming has gotten you this far. Understand that you didn’t choose to be programmed this way. Others in your life, parents, siblings, families members, neighbors, community members, friends, teachers, everyone has unintentionally added to your programming.
It’s not a problem, it’s simply a part of being human.
Our mind is seeking to create programs and patterns to follow. It’s okay.
When you can get past the shame, it will be easier to work through this process.
I love awareness. It’s easy and it’s powerful.
Have you ever heard someone say, “I can’t un-see that”?
Often that’s referring to a new awareness. It’s like those old illusion pictures of an ugly old woman or a beautiful young lady. In the beginning, you can only see the one that you can see, but once you’ve been shown the other image, you can’t unsee it. You always are aware that it’s there.
When I coach people on creating change, often awareness is the first step that I’ll walk them through.
For example, if you wanted to lose weight, we’d spend the first week or two simply gaining awareness. For example:
- How much do you weigh?
- What type of food are you eating?
- How many calories are you eating?
- What types of food do you like to eat?
- Is there anything healthy that you could eat everyday?
- How much sleep are you getting?
- How much sleep do you need?
- How active are you?
I would start observing and questioning everything when it comes to your old programming. For example, if you caught yourself yelling at your teen, you might say to your self, “That’s interesting. Why am I so upset? Why am I yelling? Where did I learn to yell? How do I feel when people yell at me? What are some alternatives to yelling?”
You see, the goal is to simply explore and understand.
This can be hard because most people to skip awareness and go straight to intention. It’s also hard to look at your life and see what’s really going on.
You’re not working on creating change here, just on gaining awareness.
It’s easier than creating change, and when you get to creating change, your efforts will be more informed.
This is related to #1, Don’t Be Ashamed, but it takes it one step further.
You can’t go back in time and completely avoid your old programming. You can’t change your past, but you can accept your past as a necessary step that got you here.
Acceptance is HUGE. It will help you embrace your past experience, and even use it to help you let go and move forward.
When I was 13, I accidentally lit my school bus on fire with rubber cement. There’s no going back. I can’t undo that. In fact, I wouldn’t even if I could.
I’ve accepted that part of my past. I’ve embraced it, and I use it to help me move forward. It’s a part of who I am, and it helps me be who I want to be.
You’re not perfect. You’ve done things according to your old programming that you wish that you could take back. But, when you accept that that old programming was you doing your best, you can build on it and improve your current programming thanks to your old experience.
This is a powerful process that will help you accept who you are and start to grow from a place of love, compassion, and confidence rather than from shame, guilt, and disgust.
With awareness under your belt, you’re ready for to practice intention.
This is hard and can take time. Be patient with yourself and accept where you are today as an important step to where you want to be tomorrow.
Part of intention is understanding and knowing where you want to go.
It’s important to understand your old programming and to know exactly what programming you want to replace it with.
For example, when I was young I was programmed to believe the following about money:
- It’s hard to get.
- There’s never enough.
- You have to work hard to get it.
- Once you get it, you need to save it.
Now that I’m aware of my old programming, I’m more intentional about how I choose to think about money. For example, I know intentionally practice the following thoughts about money:
- Money comes to me easily.
- I have more than enough.
- I can simply do what I love to attract money into my life.
- Having money helps me help others.
By being intentional about my programming, I can choose how I program my subconscious mind.
You might have old programming like:
- If my teen gets poor grades, it means I’m failing as his mom.
- If my teen doesn’t obey me, they don’t respect me.
- My teen won’t be successful if they don’t get good grades or complete high school.
You might want to change the programming to be more like:
- What my teen chooses to do in school is up to them, not me.
- It’s possible for my teen to disobey me and still respect me.
- My teen will be successful even if they don’t get good grades or complete high school.
#5 Practice Proving Your New Mentality
The last step is to practice proving the new programming. When you catch yourself in the old programming, find evidence disproving the old programming and proving the new programming.
Want to Ask Ben Anything when it comes to parenting?
Step 1 – Register for the live Ask Ben Anything webinar by clicking the button below!
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Wednesday, January 24th, @ 12:00 pm MST
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