You Already Know...


"What do you need, Mommy, to feel less nervous?

~Lucas Keel (age 7)

I am a competitive person. I love to compete: not just against other people but against myself. I like to "see" what I can do, what I can accomplish.

For many years, my competitive drive was fueled by insecurity and lack of self worth. I wanted to do well at school to please the teachers. I wanted to play golf and soccer well to be accepted by my peers, I wanted to complete marathons for the praise.

As if all of that would shrink the hole of self loathing. Spoiler Alert: It didn't.

Not until some years later and a LOT of work, did I start doing things: setting goals, developing ideas, "trying" things just to see what I was capable of, for me. What I found is that I am capable of a lot. Some things come easily and some take MUCH brain power and effort. I don't mind failing. I view it as part of the process that moves me closer to the REAL thing I am trying to get to. Failing affords me to seek new direction, additional resources and a different path.

This week my son is participating in state testing. At 7 years old (and since he was 5) he has a LOT of internal stress. He puts a lot of pressure on himself. I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing. I think that when you want to do well at something, there is internal stress and anxiety. I also think that he (and we) need coping mechanisms for that stress and pressure.

This morning we talked about many things around test taking. A few of them were:

  • tests do not measure your worth as a human.

  • tests do not measure your grit or resilience.

  • tests do not measure empathy or compassion.

  • test do not measure potential, ideas, courage, perseverance or daily progress.

We also did this breathing exercise:

  • Inhale calm, Exhale nerves.

  • Inhale calm, Exhale nerves.

  • Inhale calm, Exhale nerves.

The most important thing that I ask him (IMO) was something he asked me before I gave blood for the first time: "what do you need to feel less anxious?"

We are teaching him that he is enough and that he has all that he needs, in this moment. He is prepared.

I want him and you to know that you have all the answers inside of you. You really do. They might be deeply buried under many years of experiences, stories and STUFF, but you can re-discover them.

Remember to breathe.

Remember to ask yourself and give yourself what you need.

Remember perspective.

Remember that you count and that your achievements are just a fraction of who you are at the soul level.

Remember that I am rooting for you and that you are loved.