Eps 476: Being right and the downside of comparing our experience to others

Episode 476

Hey there – back again with thoughts on Monday’s episode and prompting us all to have a broader perspective than just the one that lives in our heads. Our relationships depend on our willingness to consider how where we are coming from is getting in the way of what we ultimately want to create. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on this!

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Takeaways from the show

  • the importance of relationship over truth
  • embrace the messiness of relationship and communicate openly and honestly with the people we love
  • prioritizing connection over truth
  • horizontal relationship
  • the power of non-judgemental communication and personal sharing with our teens
  • “What is hear for me to learn?”

Today Joyful Courage is all about clarity of what matters. Recognizing the ebb and the flow of life and having a “home base” to come back to – the people I value most.

If you want to contribute to the discussion about this weeks show, meet us over in the JC for Parents of Teens FB group and use the prompts as a guide: https://www.facebook.com/groups/jcforparentsofteens/posts/1596414907862964/


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Casey O'Roarty 00:05

Casey O'Roarty 00:06
Welcome back. Welcome to the joyful courage podcast, a place for inspiration and transformation as we work to keep it together. While parenting our tweens and teens. This is real work people. And when we can focus on our own growth and nurturing the connection with our kids, we can move through the turbulence in a way that allows for relationships to remain intact. My name is Casey already, I am your fearless host. I'm a positive discipline trainer, space holder coach and the adolescent lead. It's browseable. Also mama to a 20 year old daughter and a 17 year old son I am walking right beside you on the path of raising our kids with positive discipline and conscious parenting. This show is meant to be a resource to you and I work really hard to keep it really real, transparent and authentic so that you feel seen and supported. Today is a solo show and I'm confident that what I share will be useful to you. Please don't forget sharing truly is caring. If you love today's show, please please pass the link around snap a screenshot posted on your socials or texted to your friends. Together we can make an even bigger impact on families around the globe. If you're feeling extra special, you can rate and review us over in Apple podcasts. I'm so glad that you're here. Welcome. Welcome. Welcome. Enjoy the show.

Casey O'Roarty 01:31
Hi, hello. Hello. Hello.

Casey O'Roarty 01:36
We're back. Together, back together, reunited. And it feels so good. How's it going? How are you doing out there in the parenting adolescent land? How's it going? I am really glad to be hanging out with you today. When the show goes live, I will be getting ready to head to Tucson Arizona for admitted students stay with my son in at the University of Arizona. Guess who else went there? Me? Me I'm a wildcat. So Ian might be second generation Wildcat and I didn't really realise how special that would be until we're staring it down. So oh my gosh, more to come on that in the future. I'm so excited. So excited. Are you feeling the spring to man I am feeling the shift in the season. Happy Easter for those who celebrated last weekend. Spring Equinox was a few weeks ago. We have landed we are in a new season even as some of the days still feel really cold up here in the b&w. But we are moving towards warmer weather. Summer time. I'm so excited. I'm so excited. Hey, did you have a chance to listen to this week's show with Aaron Steinberg. I realised I have done back to back weeks of conversations about relationship with our partners. So for those of you who listen and aren't currently in a partnership, I hope there's still been some nuggets for you to take away, right? Because relationship is relationship. And yeah, relationship is relationship. I really, really loved talking to Aaron, we enjoyed each other. I think you can hear it in our conversation. Before we get into that. I do want to mention again, that and I wrote this in my newsletter on Friday. But I did get some feedback about my show with Carol. Sookie, the woman that came on and talked about her experience with her husband being a narcissist and staying with him and just how they're, well basically, it was just her story and the unfolding for them. I heard from some of you that really liked the conversation really appreciated it. And I heard from some people who did not like the conversation who did not appreciate it, and the content was triggering, especially those that shared, especially those that shared having already moved through relationship with a narcissist. And you know, I always typically, my did this time, I'm pretty good about responding to feedback. I responded to everybody I heard from about that show. My goal is to never do harm. I don't ever want to do harm. And when Carol reached out to share her story, I thought it would be interesting to hear. I am not a therapist or an expert on narcissism. And I realised what I learned through this experience and the feedback is that if I'm going to bring something like that in into the conversation, I want to make sure that the person that I'm talking to is the expert beyond just their experience with it. So, yeah, I know that you all are going to experience the show through the lens of the experiences that you've had. And always reach out, I am always learning and growing and finding my own edge as a content creator, as a podcast host. And as a human that, you know, one of my growth edges is receiving feedback and not collapsing when the feedback is yeah, you know, I didn't really love it. So I got to practice being with that, and maintaining connection with those people, which was really generous, you know, something I will say about the few people that I did connect with around this is how awesome it was, you know, as when I responded, and then we had a little back and forth just around, you know, their connection to the show. And, and I just want to, I want to see everybody, right. So again, when you hear something that doesn't land for you, I appreciate you coming back the next week, and trusting that there will be something here for you. I really appreciate that Aaron's interview was different, although we did centre, the partnership relationship, there was a couple things that I wanted to take from that conversation and run with, right, I loved when he talked about working with the clients, and kind of coming to that place of like, right, there's, you know, it's possible to be kind of right, and kind of a pain in the ass and the both and of being in relationship with others and living and coming from our own equally valid separate realities, right. I just love that whole concept, equally valid, separate realities. And, you know, when we're really standing on our soapbox, and wanting to be seen as right how that is experienced by the other person is fascinating to me. And I'm that person. I love a good soapbox, and I I'm sure I'm a pain in the ass to my family. Another thing that I loved was connection over truth. And to me, this is placing value on relationship first, and then working together through communication. And finally, the third thing that I love that I'm going to bring up over the course of today's show is checking our comparison, right checking our comparison, these are the three things that I want to dig into today, in the context of living with and loving our teenagers. Right? Because we're all in relationship with everyone, we are relating to our growing young people, to our partners to the world around us. You've heard me say before, I don't need to go crazy on it. But yeah, so the being kind of right, and kind of a pain in the ass. When I think about that, you know, as parents, we can often sit inside of being the holders of the logic, like we're the ones with the logic, we see the big picture. And you tweens and teens, you're not there yet, right? Like you haven't had enough experience. We know how it's going to turn out. Like just listen to us. No, you can't do that thing. Or however we respond to whatever's showing up, right? Have you ever been in a conversation with your teen and they're able to make a decent argument for whatever it is that you're discussing? Damn, it happens to me a lot, especially with Ian. Well, I was gonna say especially with Ian but Rowan too. I mean, they definitely are able to break things down. When I am holding a boundary or an opinion on something. They're pretty skilled at showing me that there's more than just one side to look at. And Ian especially does a very decent job of staying calm and offering the counter argument. And it's interesting. It's annoying to me. It's probably triggering because I definitely have this thing with my dad, where we often are at odds in our opinions. And he is pretty mellow about it too. And so it probably has something to do with that. But Ian's I have to give him credit. Like he's pretty even keeled. And when I can stay even keeled because I tend to get emotional because I'm emotionally invested in my opinions. Not always useful. I am able to have some really great debates with him. And you know, it's that experience I think like being Oh Been to kind of right kind of a pain in the ass? Like, yes, you have an opinion? And yes, it makes sense for you. And yes, I want you to see it my way. And you might not, then yes, you are kind of a pain in the ass. As am I

Casey O'Roarty 10:23
like I am totally, you know, I completely can see where I'm not the easiest person to deal with as well. And the flip side, when you make your point or your lay your boundary and it has a logic in the world and your kids pissed about it right? Isn't it funny? We want them to say, Oh, thanks for holding the boundary, or Oh, yeah, that makes sense and not feel their feelings, or at least not express their feelings. And yet they're mad. They're not into it, they think we don't see the big picture. Right? What is that for us? We get so irritated, we're uncomfortable with their discomfort, right? When they're the pain in the ass, we're uncomfortable with their discomfort. We want to be liked. We do. We don't want them to be mad at us. It's very uncomfortable. We experience how they are responding to us as disrespect. And for some parents, that is a very big trigger that whole idea of disrespect. Well, we get to be kind of right and kind of a pain in the ass to our kids to right, they may know we are making the right call and it's super annoying them and they're going to respond and react. Right? Remember that relationship holds. When you have a solid relationship with your kiddos, you're going to move through times where you might not like each other that much, but you're not breaking up, they might be mad at you. Right? I've had a few clients over the last few months, with teenagers that are mad at them. And sure enough, over time those teenagers come back into relationship, they move on, right, you're not breaking up. And when you do have those moments that get tense when one or both of you is experiencing the other as a pain in the ass. Remember that when you cool off? You can say something like, Hey, I know you felt super annoyed at me. I'm really glad that we can feel mad at each other. And then get over it and come back to connection. Name it, call it out. It's what people who care about each other? Do they feel their feelings? Sometimes they express them sometimes not very well. And then they circle back to connection. It's what healthy people do. Right? And again, not only with our teens, but also with our partners with our friends with our families of origin. I think this is so important. Right? It's messy. There's no like, surefire, you know, you're right, you're wrong. It's that kind of right. Kind of right and kind of a pain in the ass. I love that phrase. I'm into it. I also really loved the piece that Aaron brought about connection over truth as well connection over truth. I mean, okay, this is tricky, right? Because we want to be in our truth. Right? We want to be in our truth, we want to express ourselves, right? We want to be heard and understood. And sometimes, in some moments, the most important thing you can do is build connection. Right? We get to we can let go of the idea that the other person can understand and accept our truth and instead move towards connection. And why is that so hard? Right? I think that we get we parents, well intentioned, loving parents. We don't want to be permissive. We don't want to not set a limit or a boundary or say a thing, because we're afraid to lose connection. Right. And a lot of people I know have that this shows up a lot. It's like, wow, I know I need to do screen limits. But I don't want them to be mad at me. I don't want to lose connection. Right? I know that I should set a boundary around curfew, but I don't want them to blow up. You know, there's a lot of walking on eggshells. That happens with parents of teenagers in the name of what I want to maintain relationship and keeping in mind that mutual respect is respect and kindness for the person in front of us while also respecting ourselves and the situation so without respecting ourselves in the situation by avoiding hard conversations or avoiding boundaries, no longer mutual respect. And so the really sonship takes a hit simply in our unwillingness to move through something hard and trust that the relationship is solid and sound enough to move through it. And, you know, there's a lot of parents that kind of, there's the whole conversation around like, Are you their friend? Or are you there parent? And, you know, I'm in to the both And of that, that's where I want to live. I like treating my kids as fellow human beings, because they are, they are fellow human beings in this life experience just like me, right? There's no superior inferior situation going on. And I think that's really important. And when we talk about, Are you their friend, are you their parent, it kind of creates this space of vertical relationships, like I'm the adult do as I say, we know how that works. I'm not into it. I don't love it. And yes, we absolutely have a responsibility to show up in kind and firm Ness, kindness and firmness with our kids, as they move into adolescence. And as they continue to get older, we should be making some adjustments to the relationship and how we're relating, right? Positive Discipline, based on Adlerian theory, right? Positive Discipline invites parents to go from vertical to horizontal relationships. That's really what we talked about, with all this work with positive discipline. And I grabbed this from the internet to develop horizontal relationships, as described by Adler, it's important to number one, foster mutual respect, treat others as equals and acknowledge their worth and contributions. Yes. Sounds a lot like encouragement. Right? Sounds a lot like encouragement. Number two, encourage cooperation, work collaboratively with others sharing responsibilities, supporting each other's goals. Absolutely. Right. We talked about contributions. We talked about family meetings, we talked about CO creating agreements, in my classes here on the pod. Yes, yes, yes, encouraging cooperation. Number three, cultivate a sense of community, create an environment where everyone feels valued and connected, emphasising the importance of social interest in empathy. Again, family meetings, collaborative problem solving, co creating agreements, right, the expectation that we all live together, we all get to contribute. All of this cultivates that family community feel. And number four, communicate openly foster clear and honest communication, allowing for the expression of thoughts and feelings in a respectful manner. This is how we live in horizontal relationships with our kids. Nowhere does it say become a doormat, let them do whatever they want, right? That's not what it's about. It's about being in relationship. And even as I say that, I do hear, you know, there definitely are some kiddos that are in some deep discouragement. And the way that it manifests with us is not so kind, right? And parents are like, what about that kid? Right, they need to learn respect, right? Kids learn respect by being treated with respect by experiencing respect, mutual respect, right. And as I've said before, what I love about mutual respect is I respect the person in front of me, as well as myself in the situation, I don't have to depend on that person in front of me to do be or say anything, for me to respect them. That's not what it's about. I get to be respectful of myself, I get to be respectful of the person in front of me. That's mutual respect. And when we are treated that way, we start to show up differently. Right? We do. And, you know, another thing that can come up I love this whole concept of, we're still talking about connection over truth, right? So sometimes well intentioned, loving parents that we are, we get into trouble. When we become so focused on making sure our teens get it, whatever it is, they get it. This is how kids get it. They get it through their experiences and their ability to lean into their relationship with you. So that makes sense. It's pretty much what the show is all about relationship, and just really parting the BS waters and getting to what's real. What's real. What's happening. Help me understand. Right, tell me about that. I'm so curious. What about this? What about that? And when we get curious is, and this space is non judgmental and open our kids believe it and trust it, they're going to be ever better and more willing to share. Right? But if it feels like a trap, well, now they're not jumping in there, right?

Casey O'Roarty 20:26
I mean, isn't this how we want to be treated and all of our relationships? Don't we want other people to keep it real with us? We want people to want to understand our experience and listen deeply. As we share it. It's amazing that we think that how we treat our kids should be any different. How will they learn? If that's not what they're experiencing? Right? Yeah, that's a big one. And when there are truths, that we really want to land, I mean, there's lots of opportunities, right to share our experience. And I think, especially when we have that indication of, you know, dysregulation, showing up, that especially is an opportunity to pause and work on connection, we're just going to work on connection here. And we'll come back to the truth, my truth, you know, when everybody's feeling a little bit more regulated, right, which is great, because that's actually when people can listen to each other. So that was the second thing that I loved from my combo with Erin. And finally, this idea of checking our comparison, so I bring this up in the podcast interview with Aaron, in my own experience of, you know, 25 years into marriage, and, you know, questioning what it should look like, how it should feel, you know, doing my own, like, I don't know, scrolling and seeing what looks like other people's experiences. And, you know, and kind of coming up short and my own. And it's also happened to me, I was thinking back on this, this was a big one. And this comes up a lot in parent groups, which is for me, about three years ago, it would have been the spring of my daughter's senior year. But she had dropped out of school at the start of 11th grade. So new listeners. Yeah, my oldest dropped out of school in 11th grade. And at that point, you know, once she was in the spring of the following year, she had been through a tonne of really good therapy. And our whole family had walked together through my husband's cancer treatment. So a lot went down over the course of about 18 months. She was at that time starting esthetician school, she was going to a six month certification trade school programme, which was really cool. And I was really proud of her for putting herself out there. And what I saw in the world were pictures and announcements about kids that were her peers, families that I knew through her growing up and being in school and playing sports, declaring where their kids were going to go to college, what they were planning to do post graduation. You know, as the spring went on, there were prom situations happening. And you know, as I scrolled social media, I definitely was feeling a lot of things. Right, I was feeling left out. I was feeling self doubt about how I navigated my daughter's experience. I felt grief, that I wasn't getting a chance to celebrate these things. All the fields are showing up. All the fields were showing up. And I know this happens to more people. But you know what else? God damn. I'll tell you what, did we stand by our girl and take an unchartered path? We did. Did we trust the process? Do we believe that she was going to be okay. We all were and that the narrative didn't have to look any one way. Yeah, all those things. And while I was feeling some feelings about missing out on the traditional unfolding of high school, I was deeply proud of how our family had moved through, you know, my husband's sickness and Rowan's mental health breakdown, and I decided that that was going to be where I was gonna focus more of my time and energy on that celebration of a different narrative, right? Comparison sucks. I mean, I have clients in that ranches that are feeling so deeply disconnected with their teens, and the added experience of and we're running out of time to build relationships, right? I've clients with teens who are getting into mischief and things are going sideways, again, really disconnected. I have clients where it's just hard, they talk about looking around and seeing or think they're seeing things going really differently for others. And remember, we honestly don't have any idea what's going on, for our neighbours, for our family members. I believe that we all get some kind of hard, right, the hard and life is what grows us and evolves us as humans. It's how we know what we're made of what there is more of to learn. And it looks different for all of us. I really, truly work on being in the question of what is here for me to learn? What is here for me to learn whether it's with my kids or my partner, or negative feedback about the podcast? What is here for me to learn? Imagine if we all move through life with that question. I think maybe I've said this before on the podcast, but apparently I needed to say it again. Because I'm into it. Right? Imagine what would happen to the planet. If everybody responded to life unfolding in that question, what's here for me to learn? How can I grow through this? Right? There is space for humility, and compassion here. It's really an invitation. We get to let go of being right. We get to let our people off the hook for making us feel a certain way. And instead, we get to be in our own inquiry. Yeah, I like this. I'm into it. I'm into it. Okay, so that's what I've got for you today. A whole bunch of stuff, hodgepodge of stuff. I hope it was useful. I hope you were entertained. I hope you wrote some things down. questions to ponder this week. What are your biggest takeaways as you listened, what landed for you? Where is a place you are kind of right and kind of a pain in the ass? How can you build connection where you're currently pushing truth? And what is one place where you can drop comparison, there already is a post for you to share in the joyful courage for parents of teens Facebook group, check the show notes, there'll be a link that will take you straight to that post and you can share with the community, which is really fun. I love seeing what your takeaways from shows are. Also, also thank you for your ratings and reviews on Apple podcasts. I so appreciate each and every one of you that has taken the time to jump in there and share. So Emma Jane 33 We heard from she said having Casey's voice to guide me through parenting my teen is such a blessing she is real and speaks from the heart. She gives practical tactical support and advice to ensure I feel less alone on the parenting journey. Thank you for that Emma Jane 33. I so appreciate you taking that time. It's not as tricky as you think people. Just go to the Show page on Apple podcast. And scroll down until you see write a review. If you're on an episode page, you won't see it. So you just tap on the little three dots. On the top right, you'll see a little drop down menu. And there should be something that says go to show or go to Show page. Then when you go to the Show page, you scroll down until you see write a review. And that's where you share what you love about the podcast. It makes a huge difference for our visibility. The podcast gets suggested to ever more people, the more reviews we get so amazing. And be sure to subscribe, wherever you listen, if you listen on Spotify or Apple podcast, click the subscribe button and then every week you will be handed over the next new latest show. So make sure you're subscribed wherever you listen. And yeah, that's your homework. That's your homework. That's it from me. I so appreciate each and every one of you for showing up the way that you do and listening to what is alive each week. This is real work. You aren't alone. Don't forget if you're looking for more support, you can always book a 15 minute explore call with me to see how I can be in service to you and Your family go to be spreadable.com/explore and pick a time to connect. All right. Make sure you're moving your body and drinking plenty of water. All love till next week. Bye

Casey O'Roarty 30:18
Thank you so much for listening in today. Thank you so much to my spreadable partners Julieta and Alana as well as Danielle and Chris Mann and the team at pod shaper for all the support with getting this show out there and helping it to sound so good. Check out our offers for parents with kids of all ages and sign up for our newsletter to stay better connected at B sprout double.com. Tune back in on Monday for a brand new interview and I will be back solo with you next Thursday. Have a great day.

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