12/15/07

Ambition

Ambitious readers.

Ambitious people impress me. You know the ones. They work really hard, night and day, being productive and attaining their goals. They rarely sleep, they exercise daily, they eat right and still find time to have a successful career that took ambition to attain. I have to admit that I am not one of the ambitious ones. Never have been. I can name some things I am ambitious about though (just for fun). Food. Relaxing. Socializing. Cleaning. Sleeping. My family. My friends.
As for things I have excelled at? Well, let's see. In school I did just what I had to do to do "well." I didn't have a desire for college and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. When I did get "real" jobs I pretty much just coasted through the days. I did a good job, but never an over-the-top-excellent type of job.
Here's an example of what happens with my semi-low ambition. When I was young I took up tennis. I had lessons from a neighbor that always "took state" in #1 singles. He was incredibly talented. During my first lesson, he told me that I had a natural talent like he hadn't seen before. He told me that if I worked hard I would most likely do as he was with the tournament stuff. I was so thrilled and dreamed of one day taking on the world's greatest tennis champs. I practiced every day (for about a week) and joined the high school team. Did I ever "take state" in tennis? No. Did I even come close? No. Now I don't say this to bag on myself. I'm really not all that lazy, but in the end, my excitement fizzles, I get distracted. In short, I do get a bit lazy.

Ryan and I discussed this yesterday. We've got the same personality in many respects, and this is one of them. When we were young and immature I'm sure it had something to do with not having enough faith in ourselves, or confidence, or one of those necessary qualities of achievement. Now it's just kind of a bad habit. Old habits die hard. But we've been talking about how we need to shape up in some pretty important respects, and that's going to take some ambition.
I don't want to be just "okay" at this one chance I have to raise my boys. I've always done pretty much anything well. Just not great. That was simply because I didn't apply myself. I wish I would have in a lot of things, but instead of feeling guilty or regretting that (which would be even more of a waste of time if you ask me), I think I'll just start now. 32 isn't that terribly late. So I'm going to be a tennis star.... or no, wait... So I'm going to be the most excellent parent I can be with the mad skills I posses. Not that I have to be perfect. Kids don't need perfection. But I need to be ambitious about the most important things. So here are a few of the top priorities, as I see them, in parenting:
Teach Miles and Asher with our lives,
-about the power of God and how freeing it is to live in His abundant love.
-that happiness is found in serving God and other people.
-that selfishness makes you miserable.
-that laughter is healing and necessary every day.
-about the benefits of taking care of themselves and treating their bodies well.
-how to cherish and fully respect women.
-how to allow themselves to have emotions and deal with them in a healthy way.
-that they are worth every ounce of their ambition.
-and lastly, to never feel guilty for having dessert (everything in moderation, boys, everything in moderation...)
Sometimes I get overwhelmed by this parenting job. It's big. Thank God he is available for consultation! And like I said, perfection isn't our goal. Just a little ambition toward doing right by our children . As nerdy as it is to share that I know this, I once heard Dr. Phil say something that I won't forget. He said "you want your kids to look back on their childhood and think they hit the parent lottery." I really do want that. It is something I will (finally) give 150% to try to achieve. I'm sure Ryan and I will make our share of mistakes, big and small, but our hearts are truly in this. And I guess that's what it takes, some heart. We've got that, so we plan to "take state" in child rearing. (;

4 clicked right here to comment:

Sabrina said...

Heather, What you wrote was beautiful! Thank you for sharing your thoughts! Miles and Asher are blessed to have a mom like you!

Kelly and Kyle Vlach said...

i'm really happy I have a friend like you who wants to parent in a way I hope to aspire to when i'm a mom. your wisdom will be priceless to me in a couple years! parent lottery--love it! miles and asher should never belittle the parents. they're (hearts are) always BIG!

The Kings of Lauderdale said...

You two are too nice to me. You should see me when I'm stressed! Tain't pretty. I will keep on a keepin on though....

Anonymous said...

Ahh, well you see, at THIS you will no doubt succeed! And, let me tell you why . . . ;)~

Ambition is a no-brainer, you've got it. You just blogged about it~ what you really need to rock your house is MOTIVATION.

Webster defines this as: "the psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a desired goal; the reason for the action; that which gives purpose and direction to behavior"

Mothers around the world define Motivation as: "Children. Any amount. any age. at all hours of the day."

See?? The way I see it, You can't fail. Your ambitious dreams have no choice but to come true, 'cuz you've got motivation coming out your ears!

To me, you really are slacking off - you got the kids working for you, and what you should really be focusing on is the one thing you are pushing aside - - Perfection.

You have perfect penmanship, why not be a perfect parent? Then, write a book, make millions, retire to the bahamas, and invite me over!
:) How's that for ambition?

Hmmm... maybe you should blog about being an overachiever? ;)~ heehee!

Ahhh.... I live in bliss, huh? You do fantastic work - you don't need to hear it from me!

xo, crock

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