What an eye opener for parents!!

What an eye opener for parents!!

By Donovan Grant


Just like a mirror’s reflection, our shadow only shows us how we appear at that time. The spotlight shines on you and your shadow is cast for all to see. Sometimes it can look tall and confident, sometimes feint, tired and other times your shadow could doing some fun stuff.

You were born to win

Your shadow, even with its ability is unable to reflect how you feel on the inside. It can’t portray what's on your mind, in your heart and in your soul. Only you and your God know that.

Do you ever catch yourself asking “am I born to be more than I am being today?”

Many parents ask themselves this question. As much as our children become the lovely jewels in our lives, we still have our own lives to live too. Yes, the development of the child is part of our success as a parent, but what about your own growth?

A shadow of your former self

A reminder normally comes when you speak to an old friend that you haven’t been in contact with for a while. The conversation goes well until they say those words you are not the person you once were!”

Now for most people when they hear a phrase like this, it could be quite hard hitting. Your friend may have use it as a passing comment; but what they didn’t realise is the impact such a comment could have on you.

Self-searching questions like:

“Not the person I once was what does she mean by that?”

“Maybe I’m not living up to my potential

“Perhaps I really am looking a bit poorly these days.”

A wake up call

Remember this- it might just take a friend’s wake up call to remind you of your own unique gifts and talents. That gentle prod that says “there is more to come.”

Beginning a family is just the starting point for many changes in life. As our children grow up and life begins to normalise, it is not unusual for mum or dad to be concerned with the issue of “how I will balance my desire to be a great parent while also still having a life?” 

This is never an easy question for you to answer, but when it springs to mind on more than one occasion, it pays to give it some attention.

What are you like when it comes to thinking about your own future? Do you find it hard to focus on you?

I’ve found that often when it’s a struggle to make decisions about my goals; it’s usually caused by lack of focus. Sometimes the hustle and bustle of parenting and life in general can get so much that the thoughts about dreams and future plans get pushed to one side. Well let’s face it, how can you expect to think about your unique skills and talents when your mind is all fuzzy with all the ideas going on.

Time to focus on you

Just imagine using a calculator to figure out a tricky maths sum. If the calculator already had numbers held in memory, you’d end up with the wrong result; or even memory overload. But, now suppose that you had cleared the memory first and then did the calculation. With a clear memory, the calculator gives you the right results.

So what’s this mean for you and me? Well one for sure is that when we focus one what’s important in our life, it makes it easier to make decisions. What would change for you if you were to clear your memory of some old stuff before you can create new plans? My hunch is that it could actually be a life changing moment and could be like lifting an enormous weight from your shoulders!

The real story is that we can all have raise loving families and live our own dream if we focus on what’s important. Take a moment to ask yourself these questions.

“What am I really good at?”

“When have I been at my most creative?”

“What’s been missing in my current roles or job?”

When we focus on what we can do we go from okay to excited. We have greater confidence, make better choices, and set ourselves up to live life to the full. The obvious question then is, “What about raising my family?” Answer: if you are happy with your life the family will be happy too.

We don’t pretend that it doesn’t take effort to raise a family, but we certainly don’t make our family become like a total energy drainer. The family is in fact your energy source that makes everything that you do and everything that you become worth it. The family will be the ones standing and cheering “go on mum” and “go on dad!”

All parents really want the most out of life and out of our families too. Can we do a better job of using our energy for both causes? I know we can. Identify what you want and then make it happen. Go live a life that others will be amazed at.

Donovan Grant is a coach, mentor, blogger, speaker and IT professional who brings his wisdom of parenting for the last 21 years and coaching clients through the stages of raising youth and empowering leaders with life lessons that are changing generations.  He is a passionate and committed leader who believes that we all have the ability to help to change someone else’s life. Actively doing so as a catalyst for many years he teaches how to live a life of success, balance, integrity and fun, whether at work or at play. www.donovangrant.com 

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  • Hi Donovan…Excellent article! You have identified and discussed very effectively a ‘growth and development’ question that faces all parents! Thank you for sharing…Hughie 🙂

  • This article reminds me of the movie, “Alice in Wonderland,” when the MadHatter tells Alice, “You’ve lost your muchiness!” I remember how in the movie, I felt I, too, had lost some of my former boldness and courage, my strength of spirit.

    This is such an important topic, Donovan. We are all connected and we need each to be all that we are created to be. We can spur one another on to do great things!

  • That question so succinctly put–how will I balance my desire to be a great parent while also still having a life–as I get older, I find that my answers change because I want my kids to be independent, and I will not always be around for them. They need to develop skills as well as the keen judgement of who else to trust, and who else to depend on, and for what.

  • Great article Donovan! It is so important to have the right questions in order to come up with positive and uplifting answers. 🙂