I’ve often mentioned self-awareness as a tool I’ve been using over the past 12 months and it’s genuinely improving my mindset.
I think I’ve also found the key that’s unlocked this self-aware path I’m navigating down. My son, Corben.
Some of his traits and little things he does remind me so much of myself, he’s highlighting many of my good and bad points. As he’s only 5 he has no filter or way or suppressing some of the more debatably acceptable behaviours. His temper is the one that sticks out. The things that make him tick are the exact same things that send me over the edge too, only after 32 years of experience I’m able to suppress these emotions much more.
He has this ability to go from 0-100 and back to 0 again within seconds, something I’m also an expert at as Donetta has pointed out several times. She’s always found it puzzling how I’m able to be calm and placid, then into full rage mode and back to complete calmness only seconds later. It would take me all week to explain this and it probably sounds worse than it really is now I’ve written it down. I wasn’t aware of it quite as much until Donetta pointed out how similar Corben and I are in this respect.
When Corben gets something in his mind, no matter how simple or weirdly fantastical, it consumes him entirely. Yet another trait of my own that’s now become apparent. When we have an idea or would like something done, we can’t focus elsewhere until it’s done and done exactly how we envisioned it. It’s so fascinating to have learnt this about myself by recognising this in Corben. It also helps me be a better Dad because I can 100% relate to how he’s feeling in these moments.
I can quickly recognise when he’s got something in his mind and usually being 5, it’s something weirdly fantastical as opposed to a simple task. For example he will be adamant we have to play with a certain toy in a certain way and play out a certain scene that he’s created in his extraordinary 5-year-old mind. You have to play the exact character and repeat word for word exactly what he’s told you and even a single word out isn’t good enough we have to start again.
I get ideas on a more adult level, sometimes anyway, and they have to be played out as I’ve imagined. I can then get a little frustrated if things don’t happen that exact way, despite knowing that I’m the only one that’s seen it that way making it almost impossible for others to play it out exactly how I want. On a more positive spin of this I’m hoping this will grow into him being able to visualise things into reality as I’ve been attempting to do recently and it’s working!
Spotting these things and acting on them are two entirely different things. I’m glad I’ve been able to see and understand our similarities and not only that, I’m acting on this information too. I like to think it gives me a better understanding of exactly how Corben needs me to react because I know how he’s feeling and how his mind is working. I’m not always right but I’m more right now than before I really understood all of this.
Corben highlighting, in particular some of my more frustrating traits, has given me more of a conscious mind to recognise when I’m frustrated over things that don’t matter or have ideas that I don’t need to act on immediately. On a more positive note I understand that once I have an idea or know something is slowly beginning to consume my concentration I embrace it, deal with it and move on much quicker than I would have before.
I’m going to assume not much of this makes sense to most people, but I’m also sure I won’t be the only one that has recognised traits of themselves in their children and made improvements to their own character off the back of it.
I came across self-awareness 12 months ago and it’s accelerated since finding and understanding my own little unfiltered manual, Corben.
I’ve said before that this boy has improved every aspect of my life and created an entirely different version of myself and he continues to make me a better person every single day.
Which of your traits do you see in your children?
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