Let Them See You Sweat


This picture was taken as I was buckling him into his car seat and he said, “Good job mommy, you tried SO HARD”!

As my chapter on children comes to an end and I brace myself to take on teens, I have been reflecting on what worked and what didn’t. {Otherwise known as damage control because I’m pretty sure I screwed up somewhere.}

Is my work here done? Is this where they take what they’ve learned so far and keep stepping toward adulthood, while acting like they already know everything? Have we reached the eye rolling years? Do I keep peppering them with responsibilities and quoting Wayne Gretzky to help them do great things in life?

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

The best gift you can give your children is some transparency. {Don’t panic, it doesn’t have to be total transparency, you don’t have to tell them about your stash.}

Show them that you are willing to try something that you know you might fail at.

I remember their reactions at my first couple of running events. My husband brought them and they waited patiently for their Mommy to come across the finish line. They cheered, ate treats, and faced the weather like champs.

This makes me sound like a runny runnerson, which I was not! I started running 5k’s with 50-100 other people in my hometown. They didn’t come to my 4th race, and when I got home my son said something I didn’t expect. He said “How was your race? Did you win”?

I was shook!

OMG, my little cheer bears thought that I was in it to win it, but my goal was just to finish, and be able to work on Monday.

They saw me cry happy tears after my first race. They were just as confused as I was. This was new. I had pretty much spent my entire life up until that point avoiding situations where I run, jump,  sweat, or TRY at all. I knew that the best and simplest way to avoid embarrassment was to not do anything. Not something I wanted to pass on.

Kids don’t understand work, deadlines, payments, promotions, or getting paid by the hour. They are easy to impress and they understand presence. Are you paying attention to them of not. Are you in the moment or on your phone?

You want them to chase the feeling, not the trophy. There’s nobody your children know better than you, so they experience these emotions right along with you. You ARE their world before they hit double digits. Make the most of it.

Its easy and you can start today:

  • Sing
  • Dance, get-down, get jiggy, get loose YO
  • Create: make something from nothing
  • Lose in checkers
  • Play their video games
  • Volunteer, give them your time, not your money. I guarantee they’ll remember the field trip you went on with their class.
  • Ask for help: ask for directions, ask for advice, ask someone to take your picture
  • Get lost, get frustrated and use your big girl/boy words.
  • Play sports with them before they get better than you.

I would NEVER trade those hours they spent near finish lines and water stations watching struggles and triumphs.

Be the best trier if you want them to follow their dreams.