Sometimes it is tricky to work out if something is your responsibility or someone else's. This can particularly be the case as your children grow up. There comes a point when it is up to them to take charge of some aspects of their lives and time for the parent to step back. They grow older, becoming adults and the parent needs to take another step back and let them get on with all aspects of their lives. As our parents age they are likely to get to a point where they need help from us, but how much help? Sometimes friends ask for support and assistance but again, how much, and would it be better if they worked through it independently?
I read the following quote, by self-help author, Melody Beattie, 'Letting go helps us to to live in a more peaceful state of mind and helps restore our balance. It allows others to be responsible for themselves and for us to take our hands off situations that do not belong to us. This frees us from unnecessary stress.'
It can be particularly difficult to let a person be responsible for themselves when that person is your son or daughter. If a person has a disability there can be a tendency to do things for them or make decisions when they can manage without you.
I sometimes have to ask myself if something is actually my responsibility as I am aware I have a tendency to do things for others that they could do for themselves.
There are times when I am asked to do something that the other person could do without my help. They could either manage on their own or ask someone else. My first reaction tends to be to agree even if I don't want to do it. Sometimes I put the needs of others before my own.
Yes, and I may be tempted to make a decision for another person when it really isn't mine to make.
When asked for help some questions I ask myself are-
Is this really my responsibility?
If the person does need help and it doesn't suit me to assist, could they ask someone else?
Could I provide support in another way or at a different time?
When I am tempted to jump in with assistance or advice I ask myself-
What's the worst thing that could happen if I don't step in?
Is it possible the other person will make a better decision than I would?
Is this a learning opportunity for the other person?
Do I know the answer or the best way to do this anyway?
I intend to keep Melody Beattie's words in mind in the future.