You Are Not Your Parents: Learn From Their Strengths & Their Shortcomings
By Aiyana Ma’at
I cannot begin to tell you how many times over the years I’ve sat with clients and talked about…….their parents and the impact that their parents (whether present or absent) are having on their lives and the life of their relationship. To truly know yourself and grow there’s no detour around your parents. Love em’ or hate em’, these two people are a significant part of your emotional make-up and why you do what you do.
I love when individuals and couples aren’t afraid to stir up the pot and examine the relationship they had and have with their parents. Why? Because genuine emotional and mental freedom and insight lies in your ability to disentangle yourself from their worst traits and embody the best.
Who you are often reflects who your parents were. While growing up, it’s often monkey see, monkey do. For better or worse, you emulate (often without awareness) your parents strengths and faults. If your mother was anxious and always worrying, chances are you have some of that within you. If your father was an absolute optimist, that came through too. For example, my mother is one who always encourages the search for insight into self. That is very much who I am. My father was a true risk taker who believed that you can create whatever kind of life you so desire. Well, that ideal runs thick through my blood too.
Sometimes, in an attempt to be different from our parents, we may develop completely opposite emotional coping styles. For example, my mother can be quick to assess, analyze…and basically judge so it’s not a surprise to me that my motto is “There is more than one way” and that I am always emphasizing our need as people to stop judging so much. My father tended to avoid “certain conversations and situations” and today I highly value (productive) confrontation and hate having “unaddressed issues” hanging around. But, these styles also deserve examination so that instead of simply doing the opposite of what your parents did, you can find a truly authentic and balanced way to be.
The bottom line: Examining who your parents have been and are today and how their personalities and ways have shaped you can throw you light years ahead in your personal development and grow a better and more insightful you. Your boo won’t be able to help but sing your praises because YOUR RELATIONSHIP WILL AUTOMATICALLY BE ELEVATED FROM THE WORK YOU PUT IN. Stop Playing. Start Pushing.
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