Determined to succeed, this time. parenting
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]With a whole month of 2017 gone already, it’s a good time to ask; ‘How are those 2017 resolutions going for you?’.

If you are anything like (the old) me, and almost half of the rest of us who make resolutions, you’ve given up already- and it’s only February.

Disgraceful behaviour!

This year I’m determined to do better, to succeed by applying some scientific rigour to my efforts whilst researching the best methods, ideas, hacks and technology, with the ultimate goal of sticking with New Year’s resolutions.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”my 2017 resolution” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]Before I delve into that, it’s probably a good time to share my resolution for 2017, which is… to be a better parent.

My rationale for choosing this is that our twins will be 9 in February so, in just a few (very) short years, my words of wisdom will fall on deaf ears, my sparkling wit will be met with withering death stares, and my function in life will be reduced to that of walking-wallet-meets-personal-chauffeur.

As you can see, time is of the essence![/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”10248″ img_size=”full”][vc_text_separator title=”” title_align=”separator_align_right” color=”white”][vc_custom_heading text=”a realisation” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]I decided to start proceedings by scrutinising my past performance. As painful and embarrassing as this was, it actually led me to an important discovery, namely that a New Year’s resolution (indeed any change that you wish to make) is simply an attempt to replace an old and unwanted behavioural pattern with a new desirable one- one that will help you achieve your objective.

This realisation allowed me to narrow my research focus to the fields of behavioural change, performance and habit-formation, where I discovered how to make changes stick.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”so what’s the plan?” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]My research uncovered some incredibly useful information and ideas, I realised that others might benefit by me sharing my journey. This I intend to do with a series of articles in which I will:

  • explain how and why I’ve been making my mistakes so you avoid making them too

  • investigate better ways of approaching the subject

  • share my results (mistakes & successes) as well as what I’ve learned

Basically, I’m going to be a guinea pig. Hopefully, my journey will be of some use to you in making the changes that you want to make in your life.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”where I’d been going wrong” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]The starting point for my more rigorous and scientific methodology was to scrutinise how and why I’d failed in the past.

After much soul-searching, I identified five key mistakes that I had been making again and again:

  1. I was trying to change my life by changing my behaviour

  2. My resolutions weren’t S.M.A.R.T.

  3. I’d try and change too much, too soon

  4. There was no fall-back plan for when the proverbial hit the fan

  5. I would lose interest and therefore motivation

The rest of this article will deal with my 1st mistake, I will tackle my other mistakes in subsequent articles.[/vc_column_text]

count me in

would you like to make some big changes to your parenting in 2017?

[vc_custom_heading text=”Mistake 1: trying to change my behaviour” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]So, let’s look at my first mistake.

Upon closer examination of my previous failed attempts, I noticed a pattern emerging. I would start with an outcome that I wanted e.g, ‘be a better parent‘ and I would then make a detailed plan of how I was going to change my behaviour so as to achieve my new outcome, e.g. one-to-one quality time with the kids once a week, read with them every night etc….

Nothing wrong with this strategy per se, after all, I am trying to behave differently.

However, there is a reason why this strategy keeps failing, I hadn’t realised that behaviour is just the outward manifestation of what is happening inside, therefore if I want to change my behaviour, I need to understand what’s causing it in the first place.

Cue revelation number 2…[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”10161″ img_size=”full” add_caption=”yes”][vc_text_separator title=”behaviour is a complex mix of identity, values and beliefs- pyramid of change: see note 1 below” title_align=”separator_align_left” color=”white”][vc_custom_heading text=”a better way: start at the right level” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]In my previous life as a Financial Planner, the best results with my clients came about when we used their values as a starting point for their planning.

Your values are what’s important to you, what makes you tick. They act as a compass, guiding your every decision and yet they tend to operate below your day to day radar. Tapping into them, consciously bringing them out into the open, understanding them, was how I helped my clients get better financial results.

It stood to reason therefore, to use the same approach here. By truly understanding what was important to me about being a parent, my true motivations, I could set objectives and resolutions that actually meant something to me.

This approach will help to give my resolution some real roots. The stronger and deeper the roots are, the more chance that the behavioural plant I am trying to grow will flourish.[/vc_column_text]

let's do this...

If you want to understand your motivations- we'll send you a free questionnaire to help you get started

[vc_custom_heading text=”technique” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]So, I went ‘back to the future’ and used, on myself this time, the processes that had served me well with my clients.

In essence, discovering your values around something is a matter of simply asking the right questions.

So, if you want to join in I have created a questionnaire that will allow you to understand what makes you tick as a parent.

It doesn’t matter if your parenting goals are completely different to mine,  the principles and processes that determine success can be applied to any behaviour.

If you would like to join me on this journey, that would be great, just click on the button below- what have you got to lose?[/vc_column_text]

[vc_custom_heading text=”next steps” font_container=”tag:h4|text_align:left|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_column_text]In my next article, I will go through what I learned by examining my values around my parenting, I will also explain how you can use the information that the questionnaire yields.

It would be great if you could join me, just try the questionnaire, it’s both free and extremely illuminating… see you on the other side.[/vc_column_text][vc_text_separator title=”Footnotes” color=”custom” accent_color=”#ce879f”][vc_column_text]

  1. The pyramid of change is based on Robert Dilts’ work on ‘Neuro-logical levels’. There is a fantastic explanation and exercise you can do, written by the renowned author and coach Michael Neill that can be found at NLP Life Training.

  2. I can highly recommend James Clear for his fantastic writing and insights, he has provided much of the inspiration for this article.

  3. Develop Good Habits is also a great, highly-recommendable resource, full of ideas and tips on how you can develop the ‘right’ habits.

  4. If you want to read more about your values and parenting this is a good place to start.