I always think of my Mom on International Women’s Day. I’ll be honest – I think of her every day. My Mom had a tremendous amount to do with the development of my emotional intelligence. A couple of her favourite lines were, “Life is not for sissies.” and “We aren’t given any challenges we are not capable of dealing with.” Even though the last one ends in a preposition, it speaks volumes about facing, and then working through life’s challenging moments. Often when we hear these famous old parental lines, I think visions of just shutting up and ploughing forward, no matter what, come to mind. That was not her intention behind either statement.
Nancy taught her kids it was perfectly normal to have fears, doubts, apprehensions and nervousness when faced with challenges. She was clear that it was perfectly fine, and very preferable to talk about those feelings and use the understanding of why they were presenting themselves to gain understanding of how, and why we ticked the way we did in our own individualized ways. It was always okay to voice the doubts and her consistent reply was that it was perfectly normal to have them. That was followed by “Why are they rearing their ugly heads now?” In other words, “Let’s figure it out.” “What’s going on inside?” “What’s going on around you?” The resulting dialogue from these questions inevitably led to understanding (granted, sometimes over a longer period of time) and then action steps to work my way through the challenge.
Emotionally intelligent parenting before we identified it as such. Functional building blocks that form a foundation for life. Thanks Mom. Happy International Women’s Day to all women who happen on this post. It is a tremendously important day and a great day for reflecting on emotional intelligence.