By Jo Rix, Senior Consultant, Curium Solutions, UK
Six weeks of no rushing. Six weeks of no shouting “have you done your teeth?… why haven’t you got your shoes on yet… we should have left 10 minutes ago”. Six weeks of quality time with the kids. Just imagine?
While a lot of mums are excited about the school holidays and the prospect of spending endless days in the sunshine, not getting up at the crack of dawn and having fun with their children, this time of year causes me nothing but stress, more fondly called Mum Guilt. How can I possibly work full time, run a house and still be a good mum?
Mum Guilt is a regular occurrence for me, but, this year, I didn’t want to spend the summer holidays consumed with what I was doing wrong. I started thinking about what right and wrong really is, and it got me thinking about TetraMap.
In the TetraMap workshops, I deliver I share with the group that the Tetrahedron has no left or right, no up or down, no good nor bad and no right or wrong. I talk about only focusing on strengths and using the four Elements of nature (Earth, Air, Water, Fire) to reduce conflict. If I’m honest, I had to have a little chat with myself as to why I didn’t apply these same principles to myself outside of work. How could I use this to reduce my own internal conflict and actually get through the summer holidays with minimal Mum Guilt?
Using TetraMap to reframe my situation has helped as follows:
Earth – If I’m true to myself have I ever really thought about what my outcome has been for all the
previous summer holidays? Probably not, but this year it’s to make sure the kids are cared for
every day and have fun and relax, with minimal stress to me and their daddy
Air – In previous years we’ve just winged it and prayed that we would survive. This year we have a
plan that is visible to everyone in the kitchen, with names, times, dates, activities and actions,
including mummy and daddy.
Water – We sat as a family and the kids shared the fun things they’d like to do and who they’d like to spend time with. We’ve connected with other working families and made sure they can go to activities with friends So far this is minimising arguments as everyone has been part of the plan. P.S there’ve still been some when apparently getting in the shower at 7 am makes you too wet!
Fire – The possibilities of what our family can do over the summer holidays are endless. If there is no right or wrong, then what we do is just simply what we do. I can gain my energy from my kids enjoying themselves and me giving them the opportunities to do it. If I focus on my strengths as a mum, then the world seems a happier place.
By reframing my situation using TetraMap, the usual summer holiday stress has, for the first time in years, started to turn to excitement. Not only am I confident that the kids will have fun, but that the Mum Guilt will be kept to a minimum this time around.
Jo is in the Learning Team within the Curium Business. Find out more about Jo here.