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The Calm Mom Coach

Providing moms with strategies that create more ease.

I would really love you more if you change

Last week, as I started my car, the gas light came on, and I was upset. I never let my tank go below 1/4 full – something my dad instilled in me. I don’t like being late. I don’t like my tank on empty. I don’t like pumping gas on my way somewhere because I don’t want to smell like gas perfume. I prefer to “control” my little world as much as possible. However, I can only control my thoughts and actions, nothing else. Accepting this fact will bring me peace every single time.

I was headed to my weekly meeting which can take me an hour to get there with traffic. I have it timed perfectly. I’ve been 5 minutes late once due to a major accident.

My husband had been driving my car all week, and despite our countless “discussions” over the past 25 years, the tank was empty again. Stopping for gas might make me late, I was fuming. I went back inside, saw him on a business call, threw my hands in the air, and mouthed, “GAS!”, he immediately knew. I stormed back to the garage and left.

While pumping gas, I had time to think. Although I didn’t immediately use my tools, just a few minutes after stomping into the garage, I put them into practice.

Tool #1 My empty tank wouldn’t matter in 3 hours, let alone 3 days.

Tool #2 I reminded myself that this is who he is and that I can’t change him.

I’m the Calm Mom Coach but I’m human. The difference is I have tools that shorten the amount of time I’m stuck in frustration station. In the past, I could carry these uncalm emotions all day or even for days.

Being on “E” isn’t a big deal, but when you add dysregulation, and all the other things in life, it can feel heavy.

Your Path to Inner Peace

Do you ever feel like life would be so much easier if someone else would just change?

Maybe it’s your husband who no matter how much you repeat something he doesn’t change.

Maybe it’s your kids who don’t listen, driving you up the wall and leaving you frazzled.

Maybe it’s your whole family making you feel unappreciated, isolated, and alone.

Or maybe it’s you – wishing you could handle life differently, feeling frustrated because you’ve tried but can’t seem to figure it out.

Without even realizing it, you’re essentially thinking, “I’d love you more if you were different.”

If you’re a driven Type-A personality, letting go and acceptance may feel impossible. However, I’ve successfully guided high achievers like CEOs and attorneys to gradually embrace more acceptance, resulting in profound personal transformations in their lives with these tools. So, rest assured, it’s possible for you as well.

It’s human to want others to change in our mind we actually want to help them be better. The truth is we want to feel better – we want to be happier, less triggered, and stressed. However, wanting others to be different brings so much stress and disconnection.

Why Acceptance Matters

Acceptance isn’t about liking or agreeing with everything. It’s about acknowledging the facts without adding unnecessary mental strain. For example, if your spouse always leaves dirty dishes around despite your repeated requests, you can’t change this behavior. You’ve tried for years, maybe decades, and they still do the same thing. Accepting it as part of who they are can free you from constant frustration. From a place of peace, you can then decide if their behavior is a deal-breaker. The reality is, many issues we want to change aren’t significant in the grand scheme of things. Imagine each annoying habit as a tiny pebble in your “backpack.” One pebble doesn’t impact the relationship, but 1,000 tiny pebbles can make it unbearable. This weight can erode connection and intimacy, leading to resentment by one or both parties. By accepting the small things, you conserve mental energy and allow for deeper connections rooted in understanding, rather than control.

Tools for Immediate Use

  1. Use the “3-2-1” Rule:
    When faced with a challenging situation, ask yourself: “Will this matter in 3 days, 2 months, or 1 year?” or “Will this matter in 5 weeks, 5 months or 5 years?”. This perspective shift helps prioritize what truly deserves your emotional investment. If it won’t matter, don’t spend more than 5 minutes on it. While some situations may indeed matter, letting go of those that don’t will substantially lighten your mental heaviness and increase connection.
  2. Practice Mindful Awareness and Acceptance:
    Start by recognizing when you’re mentally resisting a fact. Right now, this is who this person is or chooses to be or this is the situation. YOU CAN’T CHANGE IT. Whether it’s your husband doing something you dislike, your child’s messy room, or a traffic jam, pause and acknowledge your feelings without judgment. You’re human you will have these moments but acceptance is key. You don’t have to accept a messy room you get to decide if it’s a deal-breaker but you do have to accept this is what we have in this moment.
  3. Set Boundaries with Love:
    Establish firm boundaries and communicate them with kindness. For instance, calmly explaining to your child the importance of cleaning up their room without letting frustration take over, relieves you of unnecessary stress. My daughter and I used to go back and forth constantly about her messy room until I decided it wasn’t worth the strain on our relationship.
    Please note: You don’t have to accept a messy room if it’s a non-negotiable for you, that decision is entirely yours. For me, preserving our connection was more important than a clean room.
  4. Change Your Focus:
    Whatever you focus on grows. If you believe this person is only doing it “wrong” that’s all you will see. This is why individuals with differing political perspectives can watch the same video and interpret it differently – they’ve trained their minds to seek validation of their beliefs. Regularly reflect on what you appreciate about your family members. This cultivates a mindset of acceptance by focusing on positives rather than dwelling on perceived shortcomings. While I don’t advocate putting your head in the sand and never addressing issues but you have to create an environment where you don’t solely focus on what needs to be different.
  5. Practice Powerful Questions:
    Start by asking yourself why you want things to change and why it’s important to you. This introspective approach can help shift focus away from frustration. Most often if you’re really honest you want others to handle things like you would or like a “normal” person would. What’s “normal” to you may not be “normal” to the other person. Why do you get to define normal?

Benefits of Acceptance

By integrating acceptance into your daily life, you’ll experience profound benefits:

  • Increased Mental Clarity: Freeing yourself from futile attempts to change others allows you to focus on what truly matters.
  • Reduced Stress and Anxiety: Letting go of the need to control every outcome minimizes stress and promotes emotional well-being.
  • Enhanced Relationships: Acceptance fosters deeper connections based on mutual understanding and compassion rather than conflict or resentment.

Conclusion

Incorporating acceptance into your daily routine isn’t always easy, but the benefits are well worth the effort. By embracing the principles of Calm Mind and Calm Love, you can cultivate a more peaceful and fulfilling life. Remember, by accepting others as they are, you’re not letting them off the hook but instead freeing yourself from the burden of trying to change what cannot be changed. Start implementing these tools today and notice the positive shifts in your mental and emotional well-being as well as your relationships.

You deserve to experience calm and contentment in every aspect of your life. Embrace acceptance as a powerful tool on your journey to greater peace and deeper connections.

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