“No please, after you.”
“He started it.”
“No, you started it.”
“I’ll change when he changes.”
“I’ll change as soon as she does.”
See the problem here?
When it comes to the scenarios above, nobody wants to go first. They want to pass the honor and responsibility on to someone else.
Now if someone were serving cake and ice cream, “Me first me first, I’m the oldest” or whatever reason they give for deserving the honor of first person status.
In sports, medicine or any professional field, firsts are a big deal. Why? In my experience, it’s the first timers who show us that the boundary of what we once thought was possible has now been stretched. The bar has been raised. What was impossible is now possible.
When it comes to personal growth, however, being first seems to be taboo.
Who was the first guy to realize he was full of shit?
I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. What matters is the first time you realize you’re full of shit. What does it mean for you? What’s the first thing you’re going to do about it?
When you have ADHD it’s easy to believe that you have more problems than solutions. It doesn’t help that the majority of the feedback you receive is criticism, condemnation or correction. Especially if you’re a child.
It’s also easy to fall into the trap of believing that everyone else has the solutions. Especially when you’re dragged from one professional to the next. Each of them full of strategies, solutions, tips, tricks and all sorts of recommendations.
It’s easy to see yourself as broken and in need of fixing.
“I’ll change when you change. Because I can’t change without someone else leading the way with instruction. That’s how it’s always been for me.”
What’s missing from this sad state of affairs is what your child wants for himself. Has anyone ever asked? Not likely. They’re too busy deciding that for him.
You may want to get your child in on creating his own life before he becomes a codependent, people pleaser who can’t make any decisions because he’s learned that life is about following everyone else, doing what everyone else is doing all while feeling empty inside.
This almost happened with one of my sons. Fortunately, I caught the pattern and stopped it. Now he’s happy and exploring gifts we and he never knew he had. All because I realized that his needs must come first when considering what to expose him to in this world.
Strategies incongruent with who he is are of little use to him and likely won’t stick. Think about that for a while.
If you can’t customize what you model for him in a way that matches his frequency, you might as well be putting on a magic show for a blind man.
Teach your child about those who have similar challenges and who have stretched themselves beyond the boundaries imposed upon them by the limited thinking of others. I’m one of them.
Teach them about how to be more resourceful and how to monetize their talents. Instead of beating the drum of the importance of the read, remember and regurgitate system that eats up far too much of their day.
What are you going to do first to realize what you’ve been doing isn’t working?
What’s the first thing you’re going to say when you humbly apologize to your child for not thinking more about what he wants?
What’s the first thing you’re going to ask your child to do to begin making decisions about his own life?
The sky isn’t the limit, it’s the foundation.
To paraphrase the Tao Te Ching, The journey of 1000 miles begins with the first step. What’s yours?