Monday, March 15, 2010

Week 11

*For explanation of The Happiness Experiment" go HERE .*

Last week's secrets:
Age is not to be feared.
Develop a household routine.

Secret # 21
Don't be overprotective.

"None of us wants our loved ones to experience any harm, but we have to let them lead their lives. Spending our time worrying and trying to prevent them from doing what they want is a real risk in itself and will keep us worrying all the time."

I think this relates to a lot of us new parents. You baby proof everything to keep them getting hurt, when really we need to let them experience hurt once in a while so that they can learn. Worrying about something isn't going to prevent it from happening. I think we have all become so paranoid with the world today, that we can't just enjoy it. I was spoiled in that i grew up in a small town. We all trusted each other there. I never locked any doors. I remember one guy that lived right by the highway telling someone that he never locked his truck because someone might need it. Why is the world turning away from that? 

"Studies of thousands of parents found that there were negatives associated with being very protective, including increased time spent worrying and a generally higher level of stress. In sum, being more protective does not offer people more life satisfaction or contentment."

Secret #22
Pay attention. You may have what you want.

"We often forget to sit down and think about where we started and where we are now. The human tendency is to always want more. A better approach is to remember where you started and appreciate how much you have accomplished."

I love looking back a few years and seeing how much my life has changed. My ten year high school reunion was last year. (I'm still sad I couldn't go.) I thought about how drastically my life has changed since then. Even the last two or three years. I've accomplished a lot. When I start thinking, "What have a done with my life?" I just look back a couple years and see how much I really have done. Some of the things that I am most proud of include: graduating from college, running a marathon, marrying a wonderful man, giving birth to two amazing kids, starting a business with my husband, buying two homes, etc. What is there to be unhappy about?

So if you feel like your life isn't going anywhere, look back at where you used to be. You may have accomplished a lot more than you think. 

"In research on highly educated professionals, almost half of the subjects could not become satisfied even as they accomplished their apparent goals because they did not recognize their accomplishments and instead created an irrational negative image of themselves."

Don't be overprotective.
Pay attention. You may have what you want.


Adam and Shari Crawford said...

I like both of these for a lot of reasons, but I especially like #22... It really is SO human to think "I'll be happy when...." That's something we've been working on. To be continually happy in the moment and not worry about what our lives would be like with..... (specifically children) Sometimes I think we're getting TOO good at it and we're liking our traveling, sleeping in life a bit much ;)

Sadie said...

I am a very laid back parent and sometimes I get a lot of guff about it, but that's one things that I'll never change. I like my kids to wander and explore and experience life. I'm definitley NOT the overprotective parent. After Ryder almost lost his life, I became a bit paranoid, and I have to remind myself that being paranoid and overprotective will not help either of us.
And #22 is such a good reminder. Just be happy where you are. I'm such a goal setter that sometimes I get down on myself if I don't accomplish EVERYTHING that I set out to. Thanks for the reminder to be happy about how far I've come.