What are your metrics for success as a parent? How do you know when you’re doing a good job?

I’ve had rubrics on the brain. When my kids have school assignments, whether those assignments are projects, written reports, or presentations, the teacher provides a rubric that shows the quality of work necessary to receive a given grade.

I was thinking about this recently because I’ve been taking golf lessons with Grady (I have to unlearn a lot of bad habits from other sports I’ve done over the years, but his young brain is absorbing the correct information very quickly). He made a rubric of sorts, and says I’m in the intermediate section. I was in the beginner area last week, so I’m improving!

I can hear you all now: okay, Kelly … What does this have to do with parenting?!

The thing is that you are in charge of yourself. Ultimately, you are the only person over whom you can exercise absolute control. You will find your life is happier if you set your own targets for success, whether it’s with the cleanliness of your workspace or your house at large, or the way you respond to your children when they make bids for your attention or when they succeed at life — and when they fail too, because they will fail, and that’s NORMAL. Hold yourself accountable with self-compassion and positive reinforcement to work toward meeting those goals.

You get to decide what parts of yourself to improve and by how much, and as you focus on the part you can control (yourself), you will be a healthy example for your kids and the other people around you as well.

Remember: you’ve got this!

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