Leading your kids by example: Bouncing back from disappointment.
Disappointment stinks. As parents, our job is to teach our kids how to turn these disappointments into opportunities. Guiding them is easy, however when we are in the mirror facing our own let downs, it becomes a challenge.
What we may not realize is that our children are always watching, looking for signs that we are leading by example, which I experienced first hand.
“I flopped, I didn’t get the job and you know what? I really suck.”
This is what I wanted to say when my daughter asked me how I did on my yoga interview. I spent the last year studying for yoga. When I went to interview for the job, I choked. I had a choice. I could have hurled myself over the Golden Gate Bridge or I could say that I had big ones for putting myself out there.
Three years ago I was unable to touch my toes, and my husband encouraged me to take a yoga class. Me? I thought he was joking. Inflexibility was my middle name. As a kid when my girlfriends went out for cheerleading, I quickly tossed the idea aside knowing that I would NEVER do a split. My body didn’t move in that direction.
The whole process was painful. Twisting and contorting I asked myself over and over again, "Why I was bothering?!" Overcoming the challenge, I continued to take classes realizing that there was something to this art that I enjoyed. Then it dawned on me. What I enjoyed wasn’t the physical exertion or pain; I realized yoga had accomplished what nothing else had. It quieted my mind. For one of the first times, I stayed still long enough to listen to my inner voice. While focusing on my asana, I gave up control of my body, and control of my mind. My teacher and mentor, Leslie, would start each class with an intention.
“You are where you are supposed to be. There are no mistakes in this life.”
Yoga became part of my life. While living in the Northeast, I studied for my first yoga certification to teach classes. Then, I moved to California, home of the yogi, where I got the bright idea to interview for my first yoga teaching position. Most would have started small and worked their way up. Me? Nope I decided to interview at a large gym and a position to teach a 60-person class. On the mat during the interview, I could hear my itty-bitty-shitty-committee as it started in my head.
“You can’t teach this, you can’t even touch your toes.”
Determined, I kept going. The girl interviewing wanted to see variety. Then, it happened. I froze, kind of like my brother-in-law when he gave the toast as best man in our wedding. She asked me a question and I stared blankly forgetting what was next.
“Ok, that’s enough” she yelled.
I didn’t get the job. She wanted me to practice and return in two weeks.
“I like your style and I like your spirit. Work on the choppiness and in two weeks we will try to find you a position."
Was that a nice way of saying, “Thanks, but no thanks?” Did I get the number to send me to Hollywood? Then again did I want to put myself out there for criticism in front of 60 people? Was I being kind to myself?
It all began coming back, to yoga, to my mentor, and to me. I had to find the opportunity to learn from this, to show my kids that good can come out of everything if we give life the chance.
“So how did you do Mom?”
My daughter peered intently into my eyes.
“Great, they want me to keep working and come back in two weeks and go through another routine.”
“Does that make you sad?” she asked, studying my face for clues.
“Nope” I replied with my head held high.
“There are no coincidences in life. It was a great opportunity to see how I would feel on a mat in front of 60 people. I checked off my first interview box, and now I understand exactly what I need to do.”
“Besides,” I added, “I know EXACTLY where I am, and it’s right where I am supposed to be.”
For more stories and life-tips with Wendy visit her website at www.lifewithwendy.com.