A few months ago, one day at work, after pouring a cup of coffee from my French press, a coworker asked me:
How’s your sleep training going?
At the time, we had just sleep trained our son.
We’d been nervous about how it would go and had been mustering the courage to start not long before.
“Fabulous!” I said.
“Oh yeah? Was that what you expected?” she replied.
“Not at all!” I said.
In truth, we’d been nervous. We thought it was going to take forever, be exhausting, and leave us even more stressed out.
We thought it was going to be torture.
Back to that conversation:
“Well, congrats!” she said in response. We parted ways there, and I was left reflecting on our experience with sleep training.
Later that week, as I was getting ready to fall asleep, I thought to myself:
We got lucky.
Here we thought it was going to take forever…
Yet it only took a few days. Now part of this was due to luck, and part due to, we believe, the sleep training method we used.
Others not so much. For a lotta folks, it’s tough.
But the way I see it, we paid the price with colic already…
That was the WORST.
And while we got lucky and were able to sleep train our guy in just a few days, it easily coulda been a whole ‘nother story altogether.
Even though we had MONTHS of sleepless nights leading up to it, I’m still grateful for the lack of sleep.
Is that crazy?
While that was like a slow form of torture, in hindsight I see:
It was the catalyst that finally pushed us to sleep train.
We just had to finally give in a do it.
Make it happen.
And that wasn’t – for me – exactly the easiest thing to do.
Put it off.
Which really, once I thought about it, I realized it’s something I often do as a parent:
Procrastination is easy to give into (especially when sleep-deprived).
With anything that involves a transition.
Because I get comfortable with the present.
And honestly, I think that’s human nature.
In fact, whenever I’m faced with any big change:
I usually go out of my way to resist it.
Even if I KNOW that it will lead to better things.
Now, some people might say they don’t do this.
And I suppose there’s a few out there who don’t…
But for everybody else?
Change can be TOUGH.
But I’ve learned through the years, when you take time to visualize the next phase, really imagine what it will be like…
It makes taking the first step, the first action, and first movement towards change…
A little bit easier to stomach.
And sometimes, instead of being afraid of every possible outcome, all you need to do is focus on that first step and you’ll muster the courage to get started.
Plus, the faster you get through the transition, the faster you’ll get through the other side…where things CAN be better.
Have you ever had a hard time summoning the courage to make a change?
If so, it makes you only a normal parent. A human being.
Next time, try focusing on the first small step you need to do…
And you might just find the courage to face the transition.
Until then, here’s…
25 Courage Quotes We LOVE for Parents
- Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage. – Maya Angelou
- Courage is a mean with regard to fear and confidence. – Aristotle
- There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me. – Jane Austen
- Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down. – Ray Bradbury
- Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim. Nora Ephron
- Courage is the main quality of leadership, in my opinion, no matter where it is exercised. Usually it implies some risk — especially in new undertakings. Courage to initiate something and to keep it going, pioneering and adventurous spirit to blaze new ways, often, in our land of opportunity. – Walt Disney
- A great part of courage is the courage of having done the thing before. – Ralph Wado Emerson
- Don’t be afraid of your fears. They’re not there to scare you. They’re there to let you know that something is worth it. – C. Joybell C.
- Be scared. You can’t help that. But don’t be afraid. Ain’t nothing in the woods going to hurt you unless you corner it, or it smells that you are afraid. A bear or a deer, too, has got to be scared of a coward the same as a brave man has got to be. – William Faulkner
- Either life entails courage, or it ceases to be life. – E.M. Forester
- Courage is very important. Like a muscle, it is strengthened by use. – Ruth Gordon
- Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened. – Bill Graham
- The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud. – Coco Chanel
- Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. C.S. Lewis
- You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, “I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” …You must do the thing you think you cannot do. – Eleanor Roosevelt
- It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies, but a great deal more to stand up to your friends… – Albus Dumbledore
- Courage leads to heaven; fear, to death. – Seneca
- Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill
- Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time. – Maya Angelou
- Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear. – Mark Twain
- Courage is found in unlikely places. – J.R.R. Tolkien
- I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. – Nelson Mandela
- With enough courage, you can do without a reputation. – Margaret Mitchell
- Freedom lies in being bold. – Robert Frost
- Courage is grace under pressure. – Ernest Hemingway