By Samantha Snow and Haley Carter
We’ve all seen them, been raised by them, have become them—the typical Soccer Mom. Regardless if your car is a minivan, SUV, or eco-friendly hybrid something, you’re juggling a million things—maybe the kid(s), a job, a home life and you’re rocking it, right?
While we appear to be handling everything so fabulously well, we’re actually the duck on the water—cool and calm on the surface while it’s a frenzied chaos underneath. We can’t let anyone know what’s happening below the waterline because that would be admitting to some level of failure. We’re leaders. Visionaries. Lone wolves blazing the trail for the next generation. This is Soccer Mom Syndrome or what Amy McFarlane describes in her 2017 Today’s Parent article: “Mommy Martyrdom.” NOTE: YOU DON’T NEED OFFSPRING TO SUFFER FROM THIS CONDITION AND YOU CERTAINLY DON’T NEED TO BE A WOMAN.
Since when did asking for help become a sign of weakness instead of strength? Why does this epiphany of community and vulnerability only appear later in life for most of us? Since when is life a competition of who’s done the most ‘good’ instead of a journey to be shared?
We’re trying to teach our kids (your own and/or those you coach) how to work together and function as a team. This seems quite hypocritical if we’re not modeling this behavior in our own lives.
For those who have participated in recent coaching education, you’re encouraged to collaborate and work in groups to achieve the best success. Doesn’t it make sense that this would apply in other areas of our life? What is the real root of this problem… why do we feel we have to multi-task and work alone to achieve what is best for the kids? Is it really what is best? Or is it what we, ourselves, think is best?
In an effort to appear and be ‘selfless’, giving ourselves to help others, we actually neglect other’s ideas and assistance. We won’t get the recognition for being selfless if we allow others to help us. Somehow, we’ve been conditioned to believe that we haven’t truly sacrificed for others if we receive help and support. We won’t get the credit or recognition and in the end, who really loses?
The kids. And us.
We’re exhausted and tired and our efforts aren’t as impactful as they could have—or should have—been.
If we look at the kids—what is truly best for the them? Are the efforts of one person better than the combined efforts of a few people? When we allow someone else to share his or her ideas and vision, and share in a load of execution, there is always the probability that the process won’t match what we envisioned, nor will the exact result. But what about the impact?
The lasting effect that this collaboration has on the kids will be more than we solely can have on our own. So why the continued need to take it all on?
Reach out. Be vulnerable and be brave—ask for help if you need it. Do it for the kids.