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Power lies in choice
Parenting Power Admin April 7, 2016 No Comments

Power lies in choice

Just over 14 years ago, we decided on the name of our company – Parenting Power. We really knew that it made sense when we looked up the definition of Power and found:

Power: The ability to effect change.

How incredible! As parents, we have the ability to effect change. What’s more, as we share that power with our children, we teach them how to make the changes they need to make in their lives.

That still leaves goosebumps, 14 years later, because it really is what the two of us believe in wholeheartedly. We know that so many of you do too.

This month we are focusing on the importance of choice when it comes to parenting and our ability to effect change. Sometimes, it feels like we have no choice – we are too tired to get the energy up to expect respect, or perhaps we aren’t sure quite what to do. We are reminded by the words of Neale Donald Walsch that,

“The statement “I have no choice” is a lie. You can choose.
You simply do not prefer the alternatives
available to you, for whatever reason. So you
select the outcome that you most prefer. Isn’t that power?”

Neale reminds us that when we feel, “I don’t have a choice,” what we mean is “I don’t like the choices that I have.” We always have a choice – our choice is sometimes to choose the lesser of two evils.

Einstein said,

“No problem can be solved from the same consciousness in which it was created.”

Sometimes then, it can be helpful to step away from a problem and ask others if there is a third choice that you cannot see. Often, when parents call us for coaching, they can only see two choices. We help them to learn that there may be a choice somewhere in between and give them the language to use in presenting that choice to their children.

As parents, that is exactly what we can do for our children. Here’s an example:

There is a school project due Friday. It is Monday. Suddenly, Charlie panics, “I’ve only got until Friday and there is no way that I can get this thing done. I need hours of time and there are no more weekends in between. I have no choice but to skip all of my sports practices this week or I fail the project!

Arguing with Charlie at this point would be a waste of time and would likely just lead to more arguing and then someone exploding.

When you are ready to find a solution to this problem, I think that I can help you find a third choice. Come back and talk to me then.”

Twenty minutes later, you meet at the table with pencil and paper.

Why don’t we map out all the free time you have between now and Thursday night and see whether you really need to skip anything?

Together, you help Charlie to see how much time he really does have and block out how to get the project completed in time.

Here are today’s questions:

Do you model drama for your child by claiming that you “don’t have enough time” or “don’t have a choice?”

What will you teach your kids about choices?

Do your kids know that they can come to you to help them with difficult choices (not to make the choices for them but to help them?)

Do you have someone you turn to when you need help with choices?

When we believe in our ability to choose and when we ask for help when we don’t have all the answers, we are choosing power.

No one does anything they do not want to do

You always have a reason–and usually, a pretty good one–
for doing what you are doing and choosing what you are
choosing. Be careful not to convince yourself that you are
doing something against your will. Such a thing is impossible.

Therefore, be honest with yourself as to why you are choosing
to do a particular thing. Then, do it gladly, knowing that you
are always getting to do what you want.

The statement “I have no choice” is a lie. You can choose.
You simply do not prefer the alternatives
available to you, for whatever reason. So you
select the outcome that you most prefer. Isn’t that power?

These are the words of Neale Donald Walsch.
Click on the link to find out more about him.

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