Firing Up Your Mojo: For Parents Who Are Fed Up With Holding Themselves Back
By Donovan Grant
Recently we took part in a charity cycle ride from Paris in France to Geneva in Switzerland. More than 50 of us took the challenge of riding the tough 324 miles including the 1500m climb of the mountain Col De La Faucille. This was a clear statement that there are many folks out there including mums and dads who enjoy stretching beyond their normal comfort zones.
Some of the comments afterwards left varied food for thought for us all “this was the toughest thing I have ever done in my life”, “the six hours of non-stop rain on day 4 almost made me quit” and “now I can tell my father that I did it!” Over 50 different voices and each having their own reason to be cheerful, it was as if they all took away valuable lessons from the mountain top in France.
So what can happen when you break up your normal family routine and put yourself to the test?
Can you learn more, grow more and be more than you’ve given yourself permission to be up until now? Well one thing for sure is that if we remain contented with what we have and lose the desire to grow, life can become a bit boring. But what if, deep down you are the type person who loves to go for a bit more challenge?
Here are a few lessons that the cycle ride challenge revealed to this father of three. Maybe these ideas can help you to become an even more loving parent than you are now or even help to know how to stay on track when things don’t go your way.
Taking the sting out of life – Riding through the French villages and countryside there were so many interesting sights that Londoners seldom get to see as an every day thing. Beautiful fields filled with fully opened sunflowers, aromatic vineyards filled with grapes and even the quaint vision of an old man riding away from the bakers with a two foot long baguette tucked under his arm. You can’t help but to relax in these surroundings.
Relaxation often leads to life reflection.
Do you ever take time out and ask yourself what you are up to in life? Me too.
Every once in a while it is a good idea to schedule some alone time where you can have a good look at yourself. When you are able to make some quality time for yourself, it can offer you the chance to look at life through creative eyes. Some of the normal frustrations will just disappear because you’ll be coming from a place of connection with your higher self.
Just for interest, here are five of the top places that people do their best thinking:
The rain came down – When we set off cycling at 7am on the final day of the ride, rain was pouring down and we had t go. There was no option, we had a job to do, a schedule to keep and excuses were not possible.
Fact: We never know when it’s going to be a bad day where everything just seems to go wrong for us. This gives us the choice do I want to be a victim or a hero? Experience will tell us all that there just isn't anything positive that can come out of being a victim. So we have to choose wisely.
We all catch ourselves thinking like a victim from time to time. In fact it really is a mental choice how we respond to life’s negative situations. If we practice and choose from our rich resources like hope, gratitude and empathy, it won't take much effort to turn our attitude around.
In the end, when we are able to cope with having a bad day, it will give us a positive return and will reflect on family, friends and anyone else around you.
It’s not what you think – Many of our riders found out that their waterproofs were not real rain jackets; they were imitations. They looked good, but they were not up to the job so people were soaked through within minutes.
The solution for many of us was a black sack that is normally used for a bin liner. It was not the most popular fashion item however it sure kept the rain out and the warmth in. When you are running pretty close to hyperthermia, fashion is the last thing on your mind.
An imitation is never as good as the real thing, but you don't have to be perfect to get the result that you desire.
Many of us have been a perfectionist our whole life. At school, at work, in relationships, even with our looks — we have always tried to be perfect. Needless to say, this takes a lot of time and energy. People often tell you to relax, but sometimes you’ve just been unable to. All that we need to do is relax our standards and view things in a more rational way. The quickest way to the result will be our ticket to success.
Are you a loving parent whose child can be a pain in the butt sometimes?
Have your kids ever made you feel like screaming for the nearest bus out of town?
Do you go the extra mile and work hard to be the best dad ever?
Are you the kind of parent who is too busy during the week and comes alive at the weekend?
If you are going to build a happy and successful family you're going to have to think like a cyclist on a charity challenge ride. By trying to do everything and keeping everybody happy all the time, you are bound to end in disappointment. Things will always happen outside of your control.
Be the best that you can be and make choices of what is most important to you. You take time out, you never let a bad day hold you back and you take action instead of wait for the perfect time. Can you really live a happy life? Yes, you can! We're here to support you in any way we can enhance the choices for you and you your family!
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