When your child is asking you for something, what if they aren’t looking for permission? What if they are looking for support, support in knowing their readiness to do something. Support in asking good questions to see if they’ve thought it through. Support to move towards their desires.
How would you be different if you knew this was true?
I know it’s a radical idea and yet I found when my daughter asked for something I quickly made it about me. What I heard was, “is that alright with you?” “will you give me permission”?
What she was actually saying was “will you support me in knowing myself?”
Instead of seeking permission she was asking for support to fulfill her desires.
If you are giving your child permission they will learn what is ok and not with YOU. They won’t learn what is ok and not ok with them.
This is a HUGE turn and yet when deeply inquiring into how to support my daughter living into her brilliance, I actually chose to listen to her.
I was used to hearing everything she expressed and running it through my filters of what it looked like to be a “good” mom. It was all about ME and responding from my needs.
That was a true wake-up call!
When I got clear she was looking for support I chose to be a clear reflection of what she was saying instead of the one who knew what was best for her. I chose to be a safe base she could count on to reflect her internal experience without making it about me.
Why? She wanted to know I believed in her, that I recognized her readiness especially when she was tentative to move towards those precious desires.
It’s extremely potent and powerful to be the mirror instead of the one giving permission.
Give it a try- the next time your child comes to you PAUSE.
Reflect back to them what they are saying, not what you hear through your filters.
Child: Mom, can I go to the mall to meet my friends?
Mom: Sounds like you want to go to the mall to meet your friends. Tell me more.
Child: We are planning on meeting and hanging out and I really want to do it.
Mom: I hear you really want to do it and feel ready. Does it feel safe to you? I won’t be there and don’t know your friends so how do you feel?
Child: Yep, they are my close school friends and we hang out at school all the time.
Mom: Ahh, You are going to hang out with your close friends from school. How about I give you a ride and meet them?
Child: That sounds great. Thanks, mom.
Offering her a reflection while asking her to tell me more gives me a sense of her readiness and also her thinking through the situation.
She gets to hear herself and I get to hear her thought process.
Instead of being in the seat of giving permission I take the seat of supporter.