2 min read

The Teacher Becomes the Student

The Teacher Becomes the Student

Being an adult is hard.

For the first few years of parenting I’ve mostly been responsible for taking care of basic needs and loving my children. As their own little personas emerge, I’m realizing that I’m learning alongside them. We ride the waves of emotions that come crashing at us every day, together, as we try our best to grow into happy, self-aware humans.

For all parties involved, there are a lot of strong emotions and frustrations that go along with developing. The beautiful thing is that you never really stop learning, if you are willing to keep an open mind.

Here I am trying to teach my kids how to act like kind, calm people when some days, I can barely make it through without yelling or crying. Emotional regulation was not something that was modeled at home so I’ve always seen that adults lose their temper and yell if you don’t do what you’re told. Because I was young and unaware, I never made the connection that the inability to regulate emotions shows up as outbursts. I just saw a hot temper, rigid expectations, impatience and yelling.

The point is, everyone just acts in a way that they’ve been conditioned to act if they don’t really take a step back and do the work to break patterns. And parenting is stressful and we’re all just trying our best, right? (I have wonderful, loving parents and a lovely childhood, by the way).

So here I am trying my best to be a teacher, when my little students are teaching me too.

Think about how you act towards other people. Do you act on emotion regularly or do you wait to react when you can calm down? Do you use healthy habits to combat the inevitable stressors? If you’re like me, I’d say, “Ehh, a little bit both, depending on the day.”

Emotional health has become as much of a buzzword as “self-care” in our post-COVID world. It’s just as vital as mental and physical health, impacting every bit of our wellness as individuals.

As much as I hate to admit I am a Millennial, I do attribute my generational position in life to some of my resourcefulness. One of the best sources of information I’ve found is following hashtags like #nervoussystemregulation #holistichealing #emotionalhealth on Instagram. There are so many brilliant people who are doling out bite-sized nuggets of information in an aesthetically pleasing format for you to digest. Or when I feel like I’m unbalanced or that stressors have been adding up, I’ll stick in my earbuds to drown out the outside world and listen to a podcast while I clean up the house.

So for 2023, I am embracing the idea that I am not only a teacher, but also a student. 

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