Updated: Jul 6, 2020
In my parenthood coaching, I work very lovingly to help shift my clients into a higher, more empowered state that can literally take old beliefs, flip them on their heads, and help them see where their values around their parenthood style, approach, and philosophy truly lie.
One big piece to this puzzle is something I learned the very hard (and by hard I mean the I-will-do-everything-to-avoid-this-feeling-no-I-don't-want-to-learn-grow-or-change-no-not-me! way). For me, it came as a carefully planned metamorphosis, which in retrospect I can see just how and when the challenges have served me on my journey towards becoming the happier, more balanced and at peace parent and person I am today.
Some great and beautiful influencers have been and are:
Adriene Mishler and her celebration of playing on and off the mat, the Mindfulness Movement brought to the West by Jon Kabat-Zinn and Thich Nhat Hanh, the empowering messages and ideas spread by Elizabeth Gilbert in her book, "Big Magic," Jonah Leher in his work around the science of creativity, the Little Book of Wisdom compilations from don Miguel Ruiz's life changing messages about the artist within, and the mighty Brene Brown and her work around courageous vulnerability. I also could not have reached this point without the loving guidance of Courtney Pinkerton, my own personal coach and inspiration, and her Flourish Method, who guided me through understanding the Enneagram more deeply and towards the incredible work of Martha Beck and the Change Cycle, the Spiritual Reparenting Movement, and Bari Tessler's novel philosophy around the Art of Money, just to name a few. Finally, I continue to be in awe of and greatly influenced by the paradigm-shifting work of Dr. Meg Hanshaw, PhD and Kim Griffith in their work around i.b.mee Empowerment and the W.A.V.E. Process.
I share all of this in order to say that we are all a compilation of the messages, connections, and guidance that we welcome into our journey. If we are open to them, the universe does and will share it's wealth of insight. Here is a bit of what has led me towards mine.
As Elizabeth Gilbert says (I paraphrase), “in life every job has a shit sandwich. It’s up to us to decide which shit sandwich we’re willing to eat.”
I just ADORE this quote! And it is oh so true! Not every moment of life, even the dream job or in the case of parenthood, the dream parenting experience can escape the concept of the shit sandwich.
But here’s the thing: it’s up to us to decide how we’re going to approach it. We are the only ones in charge of our story. We get to curate even the harder moments of life. And we begin by being willing to accept the shit sandwich every now and then. And then, when it comes, we consider what we can do to shift our mindsets into one that serves us.
For me, a huge ol’ shit sandwich that I constantly avoided was anything to do with finances and money. I simply grew up believing that I am bad with math and have zero memory for numbers, much less a zero tolerance for trying to solve any puzzle that was larger than something you would see in the 1st grade. I was so determined to avoid math and numbers in fact, that I made an art out of ignoring its existence. I also found it quite appealing to simply pretend so many things about myself, among them, that I am not and never will be good at math. And that in some way this makes me broken. And that I am bad at managing time. And of course, I should never touch any financial decision because I just knew it would lead to some sort of unearthly disaster.
It is amazing to me now to think of all of the self-defeatism that I carried around with me for so long. The first was that being bad at something immediately meant I was wrong or broken or less than. I actually felt unworthy of making financial decisions and desperately hoped to marry someone who would "do it all for me" so I wouldn't have to think. It was in this way that I sat for years and years in a pile of financial health denial that led me to most likely miss out on growing, stretching, and manipulating my money in all different ways.
But I also allowed this belief to break me down in other ways. It stopped me from trying new things and making certain decisions. Being "bad" at math and time and money meant there were many big "adulty" systems and decisions that I just had to avoid rather than mess up.
And think about the message that this type of thinking sends my daughter.
After learning about WIN-WINs with Dr. Meg Hanshaw and moving through a process of acceptance, awareness and empowerment around these themes and others, I now have a new narrative that I tell and it begins with "so what, you're 'bad' with numbers. Who cares? Do you really need to be AMAZING at everything?"
And with this, I begin my story towards the shift - one that you can also make that will catapult you into a completely different wavelength, and therefore ease your parenthood too.
Shift and change that happens in any life garden directly affects the ways we parent. This is because any balance and imbalance leads towards the decisions that then impact the way we relate to others and our children and the lessons we teach inadvertently when we think no on is looking.
So it is worth-it to analyze the pieces of our lives which we avoid and ask ourselves why we are so triggered by certain things. In fact, I now understand, that the things we freeze-avoid-push away are the things we have most to gain and learn from. In addition to that, there is brain science research around dementia and other degenerative brain diseases that says the way to most increase plasticity and deter any further deterioration is by focus purposely on the things you think you're bad at or avoid. In this way, you are creating new patterns of experience and connections and literally rewiring your brain into a new dimension.
Take it from my own personal money relationship: I went from finance freeze and fear to a redefinition of SPIRITUAL SOUL ABUNDANCE.
I now am in charge of our family finances and actually look forward to my money mapping sessions where I get to be in complete control of my financial future, play with possibilities, and source my creative and organizational strengths to build a path towards the big picture in a way that excites, invigorates and uplifts me. I don't always enjoy every moment of the path, since I am still working through a major pattern of disempowerment, fear, and avoidance but each money date with my husband gets better and better, and when considering my business, I even see this piece of the puzzle as spiritual. Gone are the perceptions of dry, cold and hard marketing and bookkeeping models. Instead, I approach my business growth and bookkeeping from a sense of sensuality, aliveness and fascination around the endless possibilities.
And don't you know that my daughter now gets to witness a proud, confident female figure wheeling and dealing with financial decisions with as much if not more expertise, prowess, fluidity, and flexibility as her male counterparts.
I have come to the point where I simply no longer look at numbers as the goblins or ghouls that I used to. By shifting my beliefs around what I am or should be and by challenging my own patterns I have allowed myself to take a completely new stance towards this money thing (and therefore ability to guide my child in financial health and wellbeing).
I now have learned to approach and even dare I say, ENJOY, the process of money management. And it’s not because I’m suddenly rich or have a renewed interest in trying out complicated logic problems. But it’s because I now get a WIN-WIN every time I work with numbers. I get to now take my talents and passions and the things I know and love and apply them to my relationship with money.
It feels SOOO empowering and sweet!
So take a life garden that you normally avoid and try to create a WIN-WIN around it. See how it changes your purpose and approach, and trickles liveliness, magic and abundance into your parenting!
It is important to me to note the lineage of my family as taking part in the creation of who I am today as well. The story they help me build directly informs the way I approach my way of being, and therefore parenthood. The challenges I grew out of because of and despite these connections are a gift, and of course so are all of the sweet moments and memories. I encourage you to take time to note your own lineage of creation as well. It could unearth more reasons you are where you are right now:
First and foremost the epic story and most genuine support, example and loving beauty shown to me in every moment of interaction with my maternal grandparents, David & Esther Pur and the loving space always held for me by my Great Aunt Judy. My paternal grandparents, Ed & Roz Mass have constantly shown me the power of love, passion, relationship, and especially my sweet Grandpa and Great Uncle Marty have shown me how to hold humor and whimsical joy. My parents, Ron & Hagit Mass also play a role in buoying my creativity and inspired joy. And my brother, Dr. Alon Mass is an epic example in playing the game of life and riding it well. Then there is my husband, Dr. Arnon Lieber and my sweet, sweet Ella who are the reason my joy has so fully shifted towards my inner truth. I shine for them and with them.
If you would like to know more about how I help parents find more purpose and therefore elevate their parenthood or want more information about my coaching services and Four Phase Methodology towards a Joyous Parenthood, visit here!
Sivanne Lieber is a parenthood coach and consultant for parents and caregivers of the soft years, ages 0-5 and beyond. She works with families to find the confident, calm, connected parenthood they deserve.
Information in this post is inspired by Dr. Meg Hanshaw and I.b.mee, 2020, Kim Griffith and the W.A.V.E and Bari Tessler’s work around The Art of Money.