My son came home with an end of school year report card this June that his father was not pleased about. His father sent a series of emails and texts throughout the summer acknowledging his disappointment of our son’s results and stated “this needs to be rectified”.
Me, being me, had a chat with our son in August, before the start of the new school year.
I asked, “How did you feel you did on your report card?”
My son explained that he did terrible. It was a bad report card and while sharing this he looked like his hand was caught in a car door.
I then shared my observation. “Sweetheart, I’m hearing you share your Dad’s perspective on your report card and from how you’ve communicated it, I can see that it makes you feel like you failed and that you’ve done something wrong. Is this correct?”
Me again: “Now that we’re both clear on your Dad’s view, please share your point of view with me. How did you do on your final report card, in your opinion?”
My son lifted his head and looked me in the eye. “I did ok Mom. Actually, I did good. Can I do better? Yes.”
If my son carried the burden of someone else’s opinions of him/his report card – he most likely would be taking his upcoming school year on from a negative perspective. The inner voice demons could even take over with the “You suck. Your marks are crap. You don’t try hard enough etc.” that many of us can relate to as part of our own inner voice daily demon sermon.
Instead, catching this “upswing” in the moment, we continued the conversation with his own momentum.
Me: “So you said you could do better, right?”
Me: “What would doing better look and feel like?”
My son then details three (3!) specific things that if he tweaked, his marks (which, by the way were all above 73%) could shift to Bs AND he will be both self-motivated while owning the plan to get there.
Know we spent some additional time talking through the how he’s going to make this happen.
He recorded his plan including how he was going to own the plan. Reminder: it’s his plan, not mine. I have no interest in chasing him on this plan. Sound familiar? (Hint: This can be your same approach with employees, teams and family members).
He’s now 8 weeks into the new school year. Last week, his two core teachers acknowledged the efforts, consistency and results he’s getting. Awesome to witness from this angle, the Momma Bear angle. ;0)
I share this family story with you today because many of us has been impacted by a perspective or opinion of someone else that has held negative short or long term impact on us, because of how we have held onto their words or in the moment comments.
Please consider for yourself:
-What am I letting impact my life because of what was once said to/at me?
-When I am sharing with others, how may I approach it so my intention is clear versus having a negative impact on them?
This “inner voice stuff” is lifelong work for most of us.
Figure out how to quiet the voices, and your life becomes lighter.