A couple weeks ago, I came across a stranger’s Instagram post that I couldn’t help but comment on. This is unusual for me. Most of the time I’m a live and let live kind of gal, but when I see women hurting themselves unnecessarily… I just gotta step in.
The photo was a messy-ish living room with a Daniel Tiger cartoon playing on the big screen. The mama who wrote the post said something to the effect of being tired and frustrated and just “phoning it in that day”.
We’ve all been there, yes?
Now… repeat that thought to yourself, “I’m phoning it in.” How does that feel?
I’m guessing not great.
Here’s what I offered my new friend. I commented that I love Daniel Tiger. He gives solid advice. I can count on him to be kid-appropriate. His songs are catchy. I still sing them to my almost 7 year old from time to time. I also offered this Instagram mama the thought that “maybe she’s not phoning it in, maybe she’s just phoning a friend.”
Repeat that one back.
How does that thought feel?
I’m guessing a little better.
Maybe even a lot better?
I’m guessing this mama had seen Daniel Tiger before. She knew it’d be good content and she knew her kid would be interested. She also knew she needed a break. She surveyed her resources and found Daniel Tiger. Seems like a competent mothering choice to me.
She could come with me on that thought train if she wanted.
It’s all up to her and I love her either way.
Here’s the thing. As a grown up, you get to decide what is “phoning it in” and what is “phoning a friend”. However you choose to define your behavior, just be aware of how you’re making yourself feel.
Be gentle with you.
I promise you there’s no downside.
I know that you might be thinking: “No! I’ve got to kick myself in the rear and get things together.” It’s so common to talk to yourself that way. Still, I want you to really stop and consider how it feels when you say that stuff to yourself.
Are you empowered? Depleted?
Are you someone you want to hang out with?
It’s always an option.
Try it out.
And if I’m wrong, you can go back to kicking your own butt.