So it’s been a hectic end of year and I got me into the thinking mode as I sorted out content for the Self Discovery podcast to be launched in two weeks. One ‘Why’ that keeps rushing back – the sentence that has to do with the reason for becoming a parent.
This question got all the more engraved as I sat in a congregation listening to power words come off an angle of the auditorium I seemed to be sitting in more frequently. “Who among you chose your parents?” was a question following a point she tried to make. It was a tough session afterwards as my mind began to joggle between the aspects of me that had to do with spirituality and reasoning.
Further going through responses to the question “Why did you decide to be a parent” on the internet, on social media platforms, from questionnaires and interviews, I found these:
a. Most parents stumbled on parenting and decided to parent as they go.
b. Many parents do not see the question “Why am I a parent” as an important one that should be asked.
c. A number of parents decided to parent to produce their kind.
d. Some parents decided to have children to have ones to care for.
e. And there were the few who had key reasons backed up with their belief system.
Looking back at what would have been my answer if asked some years ago, and combining them with the responses I reviewed, got me a bit more nervous. Nervous that, as much as we parents want the best for our children, we seem to be going at it in the wrong ways. First, the fact that we do not know the reason why we journey the path of parenting.
For everything, there is a reason. We pick a 9-5 job for a reason. We go to school for a reason. We eat for a reason. We visit loved ones for a reason. We engage in almost everything but parenting, for well thought out reasons.
To parent is to care for a child – a task involving providing services to a more delicate human. For this reason, we should have strong well-constructed motives as these motives will make the act of parenting easier giving both parent and child a sense of focus.
When you have a reason for a thing, it means you have a purpose for engaging in the act. To purposefully parent therefore means, to care for a child for a reason.
Over several years of working with both adults and children, I’ve come to realize that people love to know they matter. This is very crucial in the parenting journey – Children need to know they are important and valued.
So, apart from reducing all the chaos, we feel inside of us, helping us stay focused, motivating and encouraging us, Parenting with a purpose makes children feel valued and by so doing, helps them thrive better. A good Parenting Purpose should, therefore;
- Be in line with one’s core purpose
- Be as simple as possible. One line maybe but with deep meaning.
- Be in line with your values
It’s a few weeks before the New Year. Soon enough, we would be racking our brains in an attempt to set goals. Many times throwing the previously unachieved goals to the side.
It will be worthy to note that carefully thought out Parenting Purpose will better guide towards what goals to set under the column “Parenting Goals”