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Let’s Stop Blaming Mom

A burning campfire
Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash

Occasionally I work with someone who tells me that they are disorganized because their mom was disorganized.  Occasionally I work with someone who tells me that they are disorganized because their mom was so organized it was frightening.

Let’s stop blaming mom.

Let’s focus on what you can do. It’s your choices and your action that will make a difference in your life and your environment. Look beyond the frustration and shame of disorganization because those emotions by themselves will not change anything; in fact, they can stall you. 

When I start working with clients I give them a small binder of information about how we will work together. On one of the pages is this quote:

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein

If you want change in your life, you will need to think differently. You will need to choose and act differently than you do today. But how do you do that?

On their first camping trip with our troop, young scouts will typically light a piece of newspaper and hold it against a big stick with the hope that it will get a big campfire going. When the fire fails to grow, the young scouts often feel a little dejected until an older scout steps in and shows them how it’s done. The newspaper is lit and held against the tiniest of sticks and dried grass – tinder. After a flame erupts, tiny sticks are slowly added and gradually the size of the fuel is increased. Eventually a full-fledged campfire is burning.

Help brings a fresh perspective. What’s working can be acknowledged. What’s not working can be identified so the process can be changed. The change starts small and builds gradually.

Maybe you didn’t come into adulthood with the organizing skills you thought you should have had. Blaming mom isn’t going to make you more organized and it’s guaranteed to perpetuate your unhappiness. Get help to look at what is working for you and use that “tinder” to gradually build the skills you want to have. And maybe thank mom for the “tinder” while you’re at it.