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Powerful Lessons From My First Months as a Dad – LESSON #1: Flexibility

I’ve been through two crazy months and want to share my learnings with you!

My baby was born on April 25th, and it’s been a wild ride ever since. I won’t sugarcoat it; there were challenging moments. I felt overwhelmed, frustrated, scared, tired, and guilty.

But amidst the chaos, I also experienced a surge of love, joy, and gratitude!

So, today and in the coming weeks, I want to share the insights I gained from this intense period, hoping they’ll benefit you too 🙂

Let’s talk about flexibility.

Are you a fan of structure and routine, or prefer a more adaptable and open approach? Do you thrive on plans or embrace spontaneity?

Personally, I’ve always been a planner. I love organising my time and sticking to schedules. It gives me a sense of control and security, and I feel confident about accomplishing tasks.

Now, imagine it’s Sunday morning, and you’re excited about going to the beach for a fun-filled day. In your mind, you picture leaving early, beating the crowd, and enjoying the gentle morning sun. But as you’re getting ready, your wife needs to feed the baby, and the little one gets fussy and cries in protest. So, you patiently wait for the feeding to finish. It takes around 30 minutes. Finally, your wife hands you the baby, and just as you’re about to leave, the baby starts experiencing painful colic and cries inconsolably. You try various techniques to ease the discomfort, like changing positions and massaging the abdomen. During this process, the baby has a massive diaper blowout, and you need to change her. An hour has passed since your planned departure time, and your wife is now starving. Remembering the importance of not keeping a breastfeeding woman hungry 🙂 you agree to prepare some food. Eventually, you have breakfast, tidy up, feed the baby once more, and finally head to the beach over two hours later than planned. By the time you arrive, the beach is crowded, and the sun is scorching.

Now, there are at least two ways to approach this experience. You can either feel stressed and frustrated by the delays, constantly checking the time, or you can accept the detours with peace, enjoying the unexpected moments and caring for your family with love.

Guess which way I initially reacted?

Yep, the stressed and frustrated way! And let me tell you, it didn’t make me feel good at all!

Sure, arriving a couple of hours later at the beach isn’t the end of the world. But when you’re in the thick of it, a mind that craves order, structure, and predictability can make you feel impatient and discouraged.

After experiencing a few similar episodes, I realised my life had changed. The baby brought a wave of uncertainty and unpredictability, and I didn’t want to be constantly stressed and frustrated by it.

So, I consciously started shifting my attitude and mindset toward greater flexibility. I made a commitment to face whatever happens with a smile, staying open to new possibilities and adapting to my new world instead of trying to control it.

I even created a daily mantra to help me embrace a more spontaneous way of life:

“I don’t fight, I flow.”

Of course, I still make plans, but now I don’t tie my happiness to specific outcomes. I’m willing to change my plans at any moment.

I’m a work in progress, but I can confidently say that shifting my attitude has led to the following:

  • Less stress: By reducing the need for control and expecting things to deviate from plans.
  • Increased adaptability: I’ve become better at handling life’s ups and downs.
  • Enhanced creativity: Letting go of fixating on specific outcomes has opened my mind to new approaches.
  • Greater contentment: Embracing flexibility allows me to focus less on the future and enjoy the present moment.

I’m far from perfect, and grateful for the learning opportunity my baby has brought into my life. We’re growing together 🙂

This brings me to a reflection I invite you to ponder upon and answer honestly…

Where in your life is your mind trying so hard to control the outcome that it prevents you from enjoying the present? How does rigidity hinder your ability to be playful, smile, and embrace life?

Write to me—I’d love to read your thoughts.

Love, Simone

PS: Here’s a funny anecdote. Right in the middle of writing this article, my wife called for help because the baby had a massive diaper blowout that went all over her clothes! The good thing is, the hilarity of the situation made me smile, and I calmly went to her rescue, accepting that this is my life now—and I love it.

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