Many times I question my own ability about my growth. Am I growing? Am I going anywhere? Am I improving? Am I progressing? Am I getting better? Am I achieving something? Am I proud of myself?
I grow up in a parental style where my parents didn’t feel we have achieved enough at any given moment. Getting a score 100 out of 100 in an exam was good and 98 out 100 was not good enough. They tend to ask what happened to another 2 points. 60 out 100 was not bearable, well, to them it was shocking and hopeless.
Instead of celebrating my growth and achievement, they compared me with others. I wasn’t a honorable daughter for them to feel proud of and for others to praise.
So, they’ve sown a seed of ‘not good enough’ in me deep in my life . Without realising it, I have watered it and nurtured it. Eventually, it grown into a tall tree that takes enormous effort to cut it down.
So for years I tried everything I can, especially in academic, to prove them wrong, and be a daughter who they can be proud of. That was the only thing they were looking for and that was the only thing they approved as an achievement.
Years afterwards when we welcomed another member to the family, now my sister-in-law, the situation changed. Well, how my parents were critical about me didn’t change but my perceptions about their discourse changed. For the first time, I realised that they used such parenting strategies hoping to get me further, to achieve more. They were proud of my achievements and will talk about it to others but not me. So every critiques they had needed to be turned backwards in an opposite direction.
Only those who strive to challenge a goal and work toward it at their own pace and in their own way;
only those who keep trying, no matter how many times they may fail, can develop unshakable confidence in themselves.
Self-confidence is synonymous with an invincible will.Daisaku Ikeda
Realising this didn’t help me to repair my relationship with my parents nor cured my wound. However, it freed me from living in such influences which impacted my life. This doesn’t mean that I won’t get upset about their discourses. It means that I know how to reverse their discourses. I will deliberately use the discourses I want to hear from them to mean what they really mean.
My continuous effort to prove them wrong, actually opened my life path. Without such effort, I might not even find meanings in life. Because I feel freed from that seed my parents sown years ago, I am enjoying the journey of my life path. I am progressing and advancing at my own pace to fulfill my fundamental purpose of existence.
What are you challenging now?
For what purpose?
Where will that lead you?