Simple on Purpose | Intentional Living and Parenting

Simple on Purpose | Intentional Living and Parenting

115. A Controlling mom, or a capable mom?

April 13, 2021

I was a controlling mom. I turned on the NO switch and said no to my kids, to my husband, to myself. But this need to control everything came from one very specific belief I had about myself: that I was not a capable mom (or a capable person, for the most part)

We all like the feeling of being in control, but it can lead us to act in ways we don't like and it cuts us off from developing the skills of feeling capable. 

Because the more we fight for control, the more reduce the practice and sense of capability in ourselves. 


A Self-Professed Controlling Mom
In this episode, I shared how, two kids in, I was becoming very reliant on CONTROL. I found myself controlling all the people and all the situations because I really didn't feel capable as a mother. 

I said no to my kids, to my husband, and to myself. And I had everything wound up so tight. 

For me, the solution to move out of this was turning to my village to help me pull out of my comfort zone, get out of my house and DO stuff with my kids. 

However, I still noticed that as I said YES more and did more, that I was still looking to control the what and the how and the little details. 

I really had to unhook myself from the deep belief that "IF I HAVE CONTROL, things will go well and easy - and if I don't have control then I am doing it wrong"


Being proactive vs being controlling 
Making plans and being prepared is so proactive and important. 

In my home, we have lots of preparation and structure. We have meal plans (see the video in the Facebook group on meal planning tips), weekly rhythms, daily routines, daily plans etc. 

We rely on these preparations and plans to make our life easier. 

It is important to be proactive but watch for when it crosses over to being controlling - when we NEED things to go to plan for our sanity. 

Building up capability
We want to feel like we are in control because it makes us FEEL capable. But it doesn’t always actually make us more capable of HANDLING life.

This can be the middle ground where plans and control support our lives and help us stay proactive - but we also start building up the skills of feeling and being capable of 'figuring it out'. 

How we act when we are trying to control
When we are in a constant need of control, we start to act in ways we don't really love to be. We are hovering, stressing, nagging, worrying. It becomes really unfun and we are develop a controlling persona 

What we don't feel capable of handling
Something we might not feel capable of handling daily things. Like, broken strollers, kid tantrums, making meals with missing ingredients, etc. 

But for many of us, it goes deeper. We don't feel capable of handling the discomfort of things like a messy home, conflict with others, relying on others, other people's negative emotions. 

Letting go of what we CANNOT control
So much of this involves turning our attention and stance towards what IS in control. Which is always ourselves.