ZPR#737 – Developing a Grateful Mindset Full Episode Transcript – DOWNLOAD
[00:00:00] Cathy: Okay, so… It’s Thanksgiving week. Gobble, gobble. 2023. Um, so how are you with like gratitude quotes? Do you know any gratitude quotes? Nope. Okay, how about this one? The more you practice the art of thankfulness, the more you have to be thankful for.
[00:00:21] Todd: It’s
[00:00:23] Cathy: meta ish. Norman Vincent Peale said that, but I want to talk
[00:00:27] Todd: about…
[00:00:29] Todd: Thanks Norman Vincent
[00:00:30] Cathy: Peale. Right. I want to talk a little deeper
[00:00:32] Todd: about that one though. Do you? Yeah. Do you know what I want to talk about? What? I want to talk about this.
[00:00:49] Todd: It is. It is. And we’re going to talk more about quotes from Del Griffith. Aren’t we? Yes, absolutely. Uh, in the meantime,
[00:01:02] Todd: Here we go. My name’s Todd. This is Gabby. Welcome back to another episode of Zen Parenting Radio. This is podcast number 737. They’re all odd numbers, sweetheart. And they’re also prime numbers. And there’s two sevens in there. Is your favorite number seven? My favorite
[00:01:17] Cathy: number is a seven. There you go. I guess I’ll take that one but the other
[00:01:20] Todd: stuff.
[00:01:21] Todd: Uh, on today’s show, gratitude quotes, some quotes from one of the best movies ever created, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, and then Ask Me Anything. For those of you guys who don’t know, we have this thing called Ask Me Anything. It’s on our website, it’s on the show notes of every podcast we do. All you got to do is click a little something on your screen and then your phone has a microphone on it and it asks us a question.
[00:01:42] Todd: Freakin email. Or you can email, a lot of different ways of doing it. Uh, but that is a, an invitation. So if anybody wants to do that, so those are the three big topics of the day. Where would you like, Oh, did I say what Zen Parenting is all about? I don’t know. Uh, best predictor of a child’s well being is a [00:02:00] parent’s self understanding and on, and why listen to Zen Parenting Radio, because you will feel outstanding.
[00:02:08] Todd: Good. Here we go. Podcast, uh, episode 737. Where do you want to begin,
[00:02:12] Cathy: my darling? So the more you practice the art of thankfulness, the more you have to be thankful for. So that’s really, sounds really bland and like, oh, big deal. But here’s the thing. I want to be neurobiological about this. Let’s. If you, okay, so our brains naturally focus on what’s not working so we can survive, right?
[00:02:34] Cathy: So…
[00:02:35] Todd: Scans the environment for threats. Always.
[00:02:37] Cathy: Because we have to survive. That’s the way we’re built. It’s our neurobiological makeup. So if we want to have more gratitude, we have to practice it. Just like if we really like, you know, our body breathes without us, right? Yeah, without us trying. But if you really want to help your body calm down, you have to breathe with it and like be conscious of your breathing.
[00:02:58] Cathy: So it’s very similar with gratitude. Sometimes gratitude pops up and it’s kind of. Out of the blue, and we’re like, oh, wow, that’s great. That came up. But if we want to have the experience of gratitude more, more often, we literally have to practice it to train our brain to notice it. So, every semester, when I teach my, um, my college students, they start with a gratitude journal at the beginning of the semester and then, um, at the end of the semester.
[00:03:24] Cathy: Do they notice a difference and I would say some of them don’t because I don’t think everybody does it is, you know. Um, what is the word I’m looking for? They’re
[00:03:35] Todd: cheating. They have homework. They’re not doing their homework, sweetie.
[00:03:38] Cathy: Um, I told them, I’m like, listen, this isn’t something I can, like, look over your shoulder, but if you want to see the difference, and over time, what happens is you train your brain to notice what’s working more often.
[00:03:51] Cathy: It doesn’t keep your brain from noticing the negative things, because it has to, but you will pay attention more. So, The more you [00:04:00] practice the art of thankfulness, the more you have to be thankful for is literal in that you will notice more things to be thankful for. So, I was just trying to make that very bland quote a more neurobiological thing.
[00:04:11] Todd: I like it. Um, yeah, and I just listened to a podcast, Men Living as a Podcast, my friends Sean and Chris do it, and they had this doctor on, and it’s about how the research now says, and it was about compassion, and through the medical model, but they also expanded it out to like day to day life. Uh huh. Is that the more you care for people, the health, you know, because doctors are taught to not care, right?
[00:04:32] Todd: To protect themselves, uh, because they’ll burn out. And what they found is that the more you care, the less burnout you have, right? Yeah. Which is the opposite of what they’re taught in medical school. Yeah, I got it. There’s got to be a balance there because if you care so much about everyone and you happen to be in an ER when bad things happen, that’s tough.
[00:04:53] Cathy: What the thing you have to practice like they just got the wrong thing that they’re not focusing on. Like I. I’m a social worker. I teach social workers. I teach them how to care. You have to care, but you also have to care about yourself. Right? So you have to have ways to manage your emotions, to regulate, to have some agility, to have some release, to have some downtime, to have some time for sleep.
[00:05:18] Cathy: And what sucks is that once you become a doctor and you know what your hours are, I think both things are possible. I’m not a doctor, so I don’t know. But in med school, those things are hard to come by. Sure. Because don’t they do shifts that are like super long?
[00:05:32] Todd: It used to be much worse, especially for residents.
[00:05:35] Todd: Like they would work 20 hours a day and, you know, get no sleep. And I think it’s a little bit, uh, there’s a more. Guidelines built so that to help them take care of whoever’s care because I don’t want to talk to who’s been up for 20 hours.
[00:05:49] Cathy: It should be like pilots like pilots that they have been on the clock for a certain number of hours.
[00:05:54] Cathy: They can’t fly anymore. I think the medical
[00:05:56] Todd: industry has learned a lot from the airline industry as far as. [00:06:00] Checks and balances. Yeah, checks and balances, lack of accidents, checklists. Pilots are really good at checklists and doctors used to be not as good and now they learn from the pilots and they’re much better.
[00:06:11] Todd: Like you know, you hear those stories about somebody amputating the wrong leg and all that stuff.
[00:06:15] Cathy: Well, and now there’s so many things in place, like how often, you know, we have our wrist band. Say back to me your name. Yes. You know, say back to me your birthday. Is this you? You know, there’s all these things, these checks and balances where we may, as the patient that day, feel like, what’s the point of this?
[00:06:30] Cathy: But we are one of many people. Yeah. And they have to make sure they don’t know us. They have to make sure they’re, they have the right people. But yeah, I think that historically, like one of the things, because, um, we hold doctors in such high regard because they hold such a, um, A high sense of
[00:06:49] Todd: status, big reputation, big reputation.
[00:06:52] Todd: Ooh, you and me, we got a big reputation.
[00:06:55] Cathy: Uh, um, and they hold such status that they, there’s was ego issues involved. Like I wouldn’t make a mistake or that’s what used to hinder these things. If there was a lot of beliefs that they had it under control and that they wouldn’t make a mistake, but there is no like the checks and the balances are there to keep them from having to.
[00:07:18] Cathy: Worry about everything. It allows everybody to have a role. I mean, we’re talking like we’re doctors. We don’t really know. These are just things that we. I’m
[00:07:24] Todd: not a doctor, but I do play 1 on the parenting radio. Well,
[00:07:28] Cathy: these are the things that you and I have read about as far. I feel like it was, it was on a podcast and then Brown has talked about it in her research and, you know, and it doesn’t just apply to doctors.
[00:07:37] Cathy: It’s just anybody we have to have. First of all, we have to care like, I don’t care what job we have, like Simon Sinek, I was listening to him on the, um, good life project podcast this morning. And he was just talking about how the whole model, the whole, who’s the guy that did the, um, the business model, Jack [00:08:00] Welch.
[00:08:00] Cathy: Oh, yeah. And his whole model was, If you, if certain people don’t make certain, you know, deadlines, you let them go. You like, don’t worry about the people. You
[00:08:10] Todd: worry about the output. And we elevated Jack Walsh to be the business, I remember I was in business school or undergrad where I took business classes in the early nineties and Jack Walsh was the standard.
[00:08:21] Todd: And now Simon Sinek who comes in with this completely different lens, he’s like, no, Jack Welch’s model was not good for long term
[00:08:29] Cathy: growth. That was, that’s the key is it can’t sustain. Yeah. You can have a year where you’re like, oh, you’re out because you didn’t make this, you know, you didn’t hit this goal or deadline or whatever.
[00:08:38] Cathy: But over time, you’re not going to have the people Everything is going to be cutthroat. People are going to turn on each other. People are going to want to leave. People are going to do things where they lie and they cheat and you’re not forming a culture of support. And so we have to care, no matter what, if we are social workers, doctors, police officers, um, you know, businesses, CEOs, like, if we don’t care about people, we lose track of what we’re doing here in the
[00:09:05] Todd: first place.
[00:09:06] Todd: Yeah, and you know. We have to care. Actually, we don’t have to care, but it’s you’re better off if you do. Let’s just say that
[00:09:13] Cathy: on both ends. Not just not only are you treating people better where they’re having the experience of being cared for what you were just saying is the research around when we care for people, we actually feel better about ourselves.
[00:09:26] Cathy: It’s a lot easier. It’s a lot easier to get up in the morning, being excited to care for people than
[00:09:31] Todd: to hate people. And it’s not like. Uh, it’s, it’s not, it doesn’t have to be a soup kitchen. It could literally, and we’ve said this a million times in the podcast, could be holding the door open for somebody.
[00:09:41] Todd: Right. Like small, tiny investments into your fellow human being goes
[00:09:49] Cathy: a long way. All you have to do is incorporate it into your own life, wherever you work. When you’re with your kids, when you are driving your car, you don’t have to do something grand, just care about [00:10:00] people more. And you may say, but here’s the problem, Todd, because I know I get this from people all the time.
[00:10:06] Cathy: First, I’m waiting for someone to care about me, then I’ll care about people. That’s
[00:10:09] Todd: the mindset. That’s, that’s putting a lot of hope on somebody else.
[00:10:15] Cathy: Well, and what, again, what we’re trying to focus on is… You will, if you care more, you will get that caring back. But somebody has to lead and somebody has to recognize that, how good it feels to, you know, to smile at someone or to um, you know, just chill in the car and wave to people.
[00:10:37] Cathy: You know what I like to do in the car? I like to notice people who are driving with their dogs in the car. Yeah. And then I like to like. Make eye contact with the dog and like, just like wave to it as if it really knows what I’m doing.
[00:10:51] Todd: I love watching, you know, I love cats. I’m a cat guy and that’s very not masculine to like cats better than dogs.
[00:10:57] Todd: I’m so okay with that. And I do like cats more. But one thing I do love about dogs is the whole idea of them sticking their head out the window and seeing the world go by. They are so excited. Like cats, I don’t think cats do that part. Uh, their brain’s made a little different. A cat might jump out the window.
[00:11:13] Todd: Well, dogs are territorial, I think, like they, they’re used to like roaming around, but I guess maybe lions and tigers and all that. And bears. And bears don’t mind. Um, do you have another quote? Yeah. Before you do, how about a quote from Del Griffith? Sure.
[00:11:43] Todd: That’s Del Griffith. I’m shouting. We don’t even have to talk about it. I just want to use Del Griffith as a transition between one gratitude quote to the next. Because it’s a Thanksgiving movie. That’s right. It’s the best movie
[00:11:53] Cathy: ever. Is it the best movie ever or the best
[00:11:55] Todd: Thanksgiving book? It’s in my top five.
[00:11:57] Todd: Just saying.
[00:11:58] Cathy: Is it in your top five? [00:12:00] Of course. Okay. All right.
[00:12:01] Todd: You always make fun of me when I say that. It’s because you put 15 movies in your top five. PT& A is in my top five. It’s impossible to put 15 movies in your top five. I go Dead Poets Society is in there, Empire Strikes Back is in there, Star Wars is in there, PT& A is in there, and maybe Stand By Me.
[00:12:17] Todd: Okay. I’ll go with that. Those are my top five. All right. Uh, gratitude quote.
[00:12:21] Cathy: Go. Okay. All right. Here’s another one. This one is really, um, oh, I don’t know which one to do. Okay, I’m going to do them both, but I’ll just do them quickly. The first one is, uh, John F. Kennedy. As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
[00:12:41] Cathy: This is super, um, important when we do the things that we do in the world. I think there’s a lot of people who walk around saying they’re grateful or they say thank you or whatever, but then they don’t. Their actions aren’t always grateful. You know, it’s one thing to like use the words and to say things, but it’s another thing to live in a thankful way.
[00:13:03] Todd: Totally agree. It’s walk the talk. If you’re going to talk, make sure you walk. There’s a good… If you’re going to talk, make sure you walk. Yeah, because everybody loves to talk. Talking is easy. Yeah, you know, it’s not easy is listening. I led a meeting last night for men living about listening. Uh huh. And then nobody listened It’s just not an easy skill to cultivate if you’re gonna do it really well But I digress Talking what?
[00:13:30] Todd: Yeah talking is cheap. Talk is cheap Yeah, I’ve never heard that one before. I just made that up. Um, what, living what you, living what you want your kids to learn. Yes, I know that. Now we’re talking. Now
[00:13:44] Cathy: we know. Um, that’s all I got. Yeah, so I think that. The thing that has taught me gratitude the most, I think I’ve told this story before, but it’s for Thanksgiving, so I’ll tell it again.
[00:13:57] Cathy: So there’s been certain times in my life that [00:14:00] I have either gotten in big trouble, like when I was in high school or middle school, got in big trouble, and… That’s trouble. It was serious trouble. And I remember being like, geez, like, all I want is just to be able to, like, go outside and, like, look at the stars and feel good about who I am.
[00:14:23] Cathy: And I don’t care about all this excess stuff or all these things that I think I’ve been, you know, trying to cultivate as far as relationships or achievement or leadership or whatever. I just want to, like, feel good as a human being. And. You know, I just, and I’ve had those times many times, even like if I’ve gotten, you know, last year around this time, I had a mammogram that wasn’t great and I’d have surgery and all these things.
[00:14:46] Cathy: I remember thinking, God, once I’m through this situation, I’m just going to appreciate just being. Here, like a lot, everything fades away when you’re like, have big trouble or problems or time. Have you ever had a day where you’re like, oh, my God, all these bad things are going to arrive, all these things I have to do, and then they go away because like someone cancels or something gets rectified.
[00:15:10] Cathy: And you’re just so grateful.
[00:15:12] Todd: Yeah, I would actually, uh, I’m with you. Great gratitude. But the first word I would think of to describe that feeling would be relief, I guess. Release and then grat relief and then gratitude. But I remember getting in trouble from my parents and I was grounded or whatever, like I got in trouble, blah, blah, blah.
[00:15:26] Todd: And I would wake up the next morning and just thinking like… My world is just coming crashing down when it really wasn’t even that big of
[00:15:33] Cathy: deal. It wasn’t, but what came crashing down? So here’s what, here’s the most important thing is your sense of self. Correct. Your integrity. Yeah. And that’s kind of why I started with the example of getting in trouble.
[00:15:45] Cathy: Versus having someone cancel when I didn’t want to do something is I lost myself and that’s why I lost track of who I was and all I wanted was to be back into myself. Like, where I was like, I know who I am and I feel good about my [00:16:00] choices. That feels like home. No matter where you are, um, when you’re in alignment with yourself and it doesn’t mean alignment doesn’t mean you’re doing everything perfect and you’re not saying anything wrong or you have no emotional outbursts, you’re still human, but you feel like yourself, but when you do something where you harm people or you do something that’s out of your nature, out of your integrity, the reason you wake up thinking my whole world is crashed is because your sense of self crashed.
[00:16:25] Cathy: Yeah,
[00:16:25] Todd: no doubt. And, and I think you’re right because I would like put what I think. Was happening it was just a much I thought it was such a bigger deal than it was but to your point It’s because it in my mind. It was a big deal.
[00:16:42] Cathy: Yeah, it’s like a You know, and we can use other words like you disappointed someone or someone sees you differently or you lost an opportunity.
[00:16:50] Cathy: All those things are mixed in too, but I think it really is our sense of when our sense of self gets shaken. I don’t know if there’s, and that is true, even with a health scare, right? Like, sometimes it’s not things we do. It’s like, we think we’re, you know, going along and then all of a sudden we have a health scare and our sense of self gets shaken or someone we love gets sick or, you know, someone is, you know.
[00:17:13] Cathy: Leaving or, or, you know, there’s breakups happening or whatever. It’s all very discombobulating. Sure. And I think that when, you know, 1 thing that I really try to do, um, is recognize when things are. I don’t even want to say this because things don’t have to be great for me to do this. To notice a good feeling or to notice something good that’s happening or us laughing or an opportunity that’s good because it doesn’t mean it’s going to sustain but you gotta like Enjoy those moments because that’s what we work in core all the
[00:17:50] Todd: time anyway.
[00:17:51] Todd: The way I would say it and I think we’re saying the same thing is recognize the beauty in the ordinary. What do I mean by that? What I mean by that is right now I don’t have a [00:18:00] cold and I can inhale through both of my nostrils. So he loves the nostril example. Oh my god I because I can’t stand when I have a cold and one one side of the nose is plugged up.
[00:18:10] Todd: God forbid both of them and I have to breathe through my mouth for a day. It’s the
[00:18:14] Cathy: worst. Have you seen Nate’s thing about Afrin, about how his dad used Afrin for years. Whose name? That, that, um, comedian. Oh,
[00:18:23] Todd: the guy that just did SNL. I don’t know his last name. I just know his name. He’s like the hottest comic out there right now, and he’s hilarious.
[00:18:32] Todd: And, but
[00:18:33] Cathy: he does this, maybe I’ll find him, you can put it in the show notes, but he does this, um, whole, like, you know, part of his show is about how his dad has been using Afrin for years and years and years. And the doc, it’s like, if you look at the box, you’re only supposed to use it, like. Yes. Once every whatever.
[00:18:51] Cathy: Right. Like AFRIN is not a daily use kind of thing.
[00:18:54] Todd: I’ll see if I can find that. Okay. We’re talking at
[00:18:56] Cathy: some point. Okay. That’d be great. Um, okay. So while you’re looking for it, Todd, I’m going to do the last one and then we’ll go on to the
[00:19:02] Todd: questions. Sure. Oh, wait, what about my, um, what about my, uh, Dell Griffin?
[00:19:07] Todd: Okay. Sure. Hold on a second. Here we go. Oh, wrong one. That’s Nate. I don’t want to get to Nate quite yet. We can go back over to Dell.
[00:19:26] Todd: They’re a pretty good team, sweetie. They are. Um, okay, what do you got?
[00:19:31] Cathy: So, this kind of, this one is kind of my beliefs that kind of organize my, even my political beliefs, all my beliefs around us being here. When eating fruit, remember the one who planted the tree. That’s a Vietnamese proverb. So, The whole point of that is people who walk around in the world and they say, I did it myself and I pulled myself up and you need to pull yourself up and you take care of yourself and I’m just going to worry about my family and I’m not going to, that’s [00:20:00] not the way we work as, as a society and as a community.
[00:20:02] Cathy: Yeah.
[00:20:03] Todd: We’re like, I hate to get all DAX on us, but we’re built for group. Anthropological. Anthropological. Yeah. Like we, we didn’t evolve through solitude. Yeah. We evolved through Little groups of 20 to 70 people. Right. It was like, like there was a certain math, like there’s a certain quantity of people that helped us evolve.
[00:20:22] Todd: Like a hundred was too many, but 40 wasn’t enough. There wasn’t enough strength and talent and nurturers out there. Um, and I feel like that’s, um, that’s how we’re wired. We’re wired to be in relationship with other human beings.
[00:20:35] Cathy: And that’s the connection part. And then I think the literal part is someone built this house.
[00:20:39] Cathy: Yeah. Someone created electricity and ran the wires. Somebody, like, you know, you go to the grocery store, someone planted, picked, delivered, drove that food, put it on the shelves for you. We are in a community with other people, no matter where we are. And when people walk around thinking they’re doing everything by themselves, there are many aspects of your life.
[00:21:00] Cathy: It doesn’t mean we can’t be proud of ourselves and honor the things we do do. Doo doo. Doo doo. But we are part of a, a team, no matter what. And to treat each other with that sense of respect and to remember, you know, even the roads we’re driving on, someone takes care of those.
[00:21:19] Todd: Well, and I’ll add to that in a slightly different, I don’t know, accent.
[00:21:23] Todd: Um, as far as gratitude goes, like as I sit here in this podcast office, I’m looking at a computer screen, I’m looking at a mixer, I’m looking at a recorder. You’re looking at your what? I’m looking at my sweetheart. Everything came from the earth, like, like, if you look at a computer, like, oh, it didn’t come from the earth, every single part of it somehow was made from something natural, like even plastic.
[00:21:46] Todd: I don’t know how they make plastic, but I don’t think plastics natural. I know it’s not natural, but they had to have made it out of something. It had to start with, had to start with something that came from the ground or from the trees. Right. Um, and I just think that that’s kind of [00:22:00] incredible.
[00:22:00] Cathy: Yeah, I, I agree.
[00:22:03] Cathy: And I think that I was, I wanted to go on a tangent about plastic, but I don’t think.
[00:22:07] Todd: Yeah, let’s not go
[00:22:07] Cathy: to the plastic. I’m not going to make anyone feel bad, but there, there was this thing that I heard that somebody said, you know, a lot of times people will be. Frustrated people for not recycling, understandably, but at the same time, like, people don’t know sometimes how to recycle or where it goes.
[00:22:23] Cathy: And sometimes even if we recycle it, it doesn’t end up in the right place. And the question is always, why are we making this in the first place? Yeah. Why we’re getting blamed. But, like, why is it out there in the first place?
[00:22:34] Todd: I remember listening to a, uh, podcast and there was a lady on there who was a significant environmentalist.
[00:22:39] Todd: Yeah. And at the time she was a little naive and she’s like, I’m not going to use plastic at all. And then she realized the next morning she woke up, she had to go pee and she sat on the toilet and she realized she was sitting on a plastic toilet seat. No, these are hard. Like, even those toilet seats that we sit on are plastic, so, uh, and it’s not either or, but you’re trying to minimize it.
[00:23:00] Todd: But anyways, I thought that was an interesting take. Like, we can’t. If we’re going to live in the society that we live in, we can’t avoid.
[00:23:06] Cathy: Yeah, and we run into walls no matter where we want. Like, it’s very hard to be, like, have an opinion about something and then follow through with it a hundred percent.
[00:23:15] Cathy: And I’m not just talking with recycling or plastic, but everything is paradoxical. Like, that’s part of what Zen means is that. Things that are good, in some ways are bad in others, and things that we deem bad can often be the road to change. Sure. And you know, it’s just a very, um, it’s not linear. It’s, and it’s not one straight line.
[00:23:34] Cathy: It’s a lot of
[00:23:35] Todd: bumps. Are you ready for Nate and Apin? Nate, Terry, Ky I think that’s what, it’s
[00:23:52] Todd: not it.[00:24:00]
[00:25:12] Todd: Uh, that’s good. Isn’t that so true? His delivery’s so great. Oh, I love it. I’m gonna tell you to not get involved. Um, okay. Gimme another, uh, we’re, let’s be done with the quotes. Okay. Now we’re gonna ask me anything. Do you have these questions? I do. Somewhere,
[00:25:28] Cathy: I have ’em written down
[00:25:28] Todd: if you wanna read ’em.
[00:25:29] Todd: Yeah, read. Read whichever one. Oh, do you want me to read it? Okay. Yeah, whatever. Oh, what does it start with? Let me read it. Just give me the first three words because I think we’re looking. I have four. I
[00:25:37] Cathy: have what about
[00:25:38] Todd: the kid? I got it right here. What about the
[00:25:40] Cathy: kid? So can you give some context to the what about the kid?
[00:25:42] Cathy: I have no context. Okay,
[00:25:43] Todd: we’ll read it and then I’ll give the context. What about the kid that was better at 10 than 16? His two chores never get done unless I do it or hubby and I don’t know how to get or unless I do it or hubby. And I don’t know how to get him off his butt without going [00:26:00] postal 80s style like I was raised.
[00:26:02] Todd: So
[00:26:02] Cathy: she was, this was posted actually underneath, um, the show. Team Zen
[00:26:06] Todd: member or no? I don’t think
[00:26:08] Cathy: so. But it was posted under our show because we were talking about, um, how kids, how to get them involved in chores and how things take time and how we, remember the story I told about how. Like, you know, if your kid is 10 and you’re like, it’s time for you to do laundry, they may question, like, why do I have to do my own laundry?
[00:26:25] Cathy: And that’s a valid question. And that you have to, over time, help them, uh, uh, uh, when, um, make it part of their schedule. Like, like, it. Like, help them do it, learn how to do it, and then remind them so it becomes part of their routine. Okay? So she’s saying, like, maybe my kid at 10 start doing it, but now my kid at 16 is totally dropping
[00:26:49] Todd: the ball.
[00:26:50] Todd: So he used to do it at 10 and now that he’s 16, he’s less responsible. And I
[00:26:53] Cathy: think that, like everything else we always talk about, is why. Okay? And not, not going to your kid and saying, why? Um, but actually saying to them, I noticed your laundry’s not getting done. I noticed that, or your last minute about it, or there’s clothes all over your floor.
[00:27:09] Cathy: Tell me, because you used to do your laundry all the time, tell me what things have changed that has made this more difficult and how can I help you? Now, obviously, the simple answer is they could say, you could do it. You don’t have to do that. You don’t have to be like, okay, I’m going to do it for you.
[00:27:24] Cathy: But there are things that we can do to help organize. There’s things that we can do to help streamline. Like they may say, well, I was going to do laundry the other night. I went in there and there was no more detergent. And then I just haven’t done it all week. That’s valid, right? Like you, and I’m saying we don’t need to feel bad about it, but it’s like, okay, that’s valid.
[00:27:40] Cathy: They may have some reasons. They may also say. Like my youngest daughter is in high school right now and her schedule is so different than it was last year. She’s basically got something after school every single day. Then she like has things like she had to go back out for something. She’s so much busier than she used to be.
[00:27:57] Cathy: And so she can still do her laundry on Sunday [00:28:00] and she still does. But occasionally we talked about on the show that we We started helping her in the morning with getting her lunch ready because we saw how many other things she was doing. So sometimes a 16 year old, um, is doing a lot already. Now, the way this mom’s saying it, she said, I want him to get off his butt, so maybe he’s playing a lot of video games.
[00:28:22] Cathy: You know, maybe he has his way of, like, kind of dealing with whatever emotions he’s experiencing, whatever aspects of life that feel difficult, he is using numbing out in some way, scrolling through his phone. I think the key is to keep the conversation going. Is to understand that. Now, that doesn’t mean you say, yes, go ahead and keep scrolling through your phone.
[00:28:46] Cathy: I understand why you wanted them out at the end of the day. I do too, right? Like, I sent out a funny TikTok, the surprise, surprise lady. Surprise, surprise. Surprise, surprise. She’s my favorite meme, but it said something like when your wife goes up to bed at 8 o’clock and you come up 2 hours later and she’s still.
[00:29:05] Cathy: Um, on her phone scrolling. I tend to wait sometimes till the end of the day to read threads and to look at Instagram. And that’s kind of my, you know, good or bad, because I know we’re not supposed to put our phones before bed. I know I’m not doing this perfectly, but.
[00:29:21] Todd: Sweetie, you’re not perfect. I’m not. I don’t, I’m
[00:29:24] Cathy: not at all.
[00:29:24] Cathy: I had no idea. Yeah, so sorry. We’ve been married a long time now, you know. Yes. Um, but my point is, is I think one way to do it with our kids is to yell at them and make them afraid and go postal, like you said, and it’s very disconnecting. It makes them annoyed at us. They end up doing things behind our back a lot of the time, um, versus saying, I understand why you wanted them out when you get home.
[00:29:47] Cathy: How can I make it Get you back in the, you know, getting used to doing your laundry again or choosing a day or, you know, how can I support you in getting this done because I’m getting frustrated because you’re not doing it. [00:30:00] So it’s joining them rather than going against them. Um, I’m not saying that will be perfect and that it’ll solve everything, but at least it opens a conversation to maybe why they’re not getting these things done.
[00:30:12] Cathy: And some of it is being a team and being flighty. And thinking about a lot of other things rather than laundry. Like, they had a very different brain when they were 10. Sure. Think of all the things a, a, uh, teenage boy at 16 is thinking about.
[00:30:26] Todd: All right, you ready for my take? Okay. Uh, first of all, I want to say, um, with this, I think it was a mom, right?
[00:30:31] Todd: I think so. Uh, I’ve also been frustrated. I think if anybody’s listening to this podcast and they have kids, uh, you also can identify with frustration from kids not doing what you want them to do, right? So that’s the first thing. I thought of Shefali, because Shefali used to talk about natural consequences and all that.
[00:30:49] Todd: Because there’s part of me, it’s like, just not, have them not do their laundry. Like, have them walk around with dirty clothes. Now, I know that’s really hard. And the example I like to think of is, like, we’ve had our kids For the most part, run their room the way they want to run their room, which means messy, close on the floor.
[00:31:07] Todd: Now, they’re all pretty good at it now, but there was a time when not everybody was good at it, right? Would you agree with that? There have been times. Right. And we allowed them to have those times, right? Now, if there’s moldy turkey sandwiches in the corner, that’s a problem. I found moldy things. Right. So, so it’s a, it’s this continuum.
[00:31:25] Todd: So I feel like sometimes we as parents are like, no, these kids got to learn their manners and learn this stuff. And, uh, they must do their laundry in a way that I would do their laundry. And I’d be like, there’s probably a little bit of give there. Like, why don’t you just not do the kids laundry? And I don’t know if it’s family laundry, like towels for the community or if it’s his own laundry.
[00:31:45] Todd: It’s his own laundry. Just let him walk around with dirty clothes and let peer pressure take over and stay on his team for a bit. Because I have a feeling when somebody’s nagging at me about doing something, I don’t feel like they’re on my team. So [00:32:00] we got to try to be on our kid’s team as much as possible.
[00:32:02] Todd: And there’s times when you have to, you know, have a difficult conversation saying, you know, you’re, you’re Turkey sandwich is moldy in the corner. Or you don’t smell good. Or you don’t smell good. Um, so, and then like, and like the, the authoritarian or the militant way of doing it, of dropping the hammer, we know that that doesn’t have good long term effect.
[00:32:24] Todd: It works in the moment,
[00:32:25] Cathy: it doesn’t work
[00:32:26] Todd: long term. And then lastly, it’s just like, check your energy when you’re, when you’re engaging with your child. And if you’re like really frustrated and closed and defensive, it’s probably not going to go well. So get yourself a little more regulated. This is what I do.
[00:32:40] Todd: Like, sometimes when I get frustrated, like, I’m not in a good position to engage with another human being right now. So instead, I’m going to remove myself from engaging until I feel a little bit better. So that’s a few thoughts that I might have for them.
[00:32:51] Cathy: I kind of feel like things with our kids are always last straws.
[00:32:54] Cathy: Like, we’re kind of already tired. We’ve had a long day. We’ve done all our pieces. You know, we’ve done the dishwasher. We brought in the mail. We went to work for the day. We cleaned up, you know, we’ve got the dog, we did all these things. And then we go up to our kid’s room and they didn’t do the one thing, right?
[00:33:09] Cathy: And we’re like, geez, I do all these things. But again, remember, they’re not us. They’re not adults yet. And their world is not around doing the dishwasher. It’s around having this text exchange with this person and making sure that they get to their practice on time. And they have a different world. That doesn’t mean it’s okay.
[00:33:29] Cathy: That they don’t do their laundry, thus the conversation, and how can I help this happen, or you don’t smell good, figure it out. But I think sometimes when we compare ourselves, like apples to apples, to our kids, it’s not a fair comparison. They have different brains, they have different experiences, they have a different life.
[00:33:46] Cathy: And we have, what our goal is, is do they know how to do laundry so that when they go out in the world, they can do it themselves. That’s all I care about. Sometimes the girls drop the ball on these things. Like, you know, like Todd said, sometimes I make, when I make my daughter’s [00:34:00] lunch, if I’m not around, she knows how to do it.
[00:34:02] Cathy: So I am not needed. I’m
[00:34:04] Todd: just supported. You’ve, you’ve, you’ve done the teaching and now we happen to be in a place of support. Are you ready for the next Del Griffith quote?
[00:34:33] Todd: Not a very good listener. Dell’s not super
[00:34:35] Cathy: supportive. You know what else is gross? It’ll come back again. Gross with Dell. What is he smokes while he eats. Oh, he does. It’s disgusting. Yeah. It’s kind of like he has a cigarette while he’s eating. And again, he’s so, such a, he’s such an interesting character in that way.
[00:34:48] Cathy: ’cause you love him even though it’s very gross. Mm-Hmm. . Yeah. And don’t take your shoes off on a plane, everybody. Yeah.
[00:34:53] Todd: I mean, yeah. And don’t wave your socks around. Don’t
[00:34:55] Cathy: wave your socks around. Say your dogs are barking. That’s
[00:34:57] Todd: right.
[00:34:58] Cathy: Uh, what do you got next? Okay, so the next question is, um, I’ll go to, I’ll just go to the next one.
[00:35:05] Cathy: It says question concerning communicating with our six and three year old. I think I’ve gotten in a bit of a rut lately with teaching versus having conversations. However, I’m curious if all of you feel like when your children, this must be Team Zen. I’m curious if you feel like when your children were, are younger, do you naturally do more.
[00:35:24] Cathy: Teaching, talking, or should we be focusing on a conversation like communication? Does that make sense?
[00:35:30] Todd: Um, it’s a great question. I think it’s a valid question. And my quick answer, I’m kind of tired, so my brain’s not working that well. Okay. Um, is I think we do a lot more teaching when our kids are younger, and the older they get, we do more…
[00:35:44] Todd: Uh, cheerleading and coaching and less just normal conversation, normal conversations always have to be on. So, um, yeah, I think it’s very normal to do a little more teaching stuff, but I love the question. It’s it’s there’s something in there about teaching versus discussion. Is that [00:36:00] conversation conversation?
[00:36:01] Todd: Like, you know, that’s what we want to have, you know, it’s valuable. Who wants to be taught?
[00:36:05] Cathy: Well again, it’s this role that we think we have as a parent and we do have limited time with them at home where we want to make sure we get in a lot of things that we want to tell them or experiences or whatever.
[00:36:17] Cathy: Oh sorry, sorry, sorry. Oh my gosh, there’s like a man in my ears. That’s my bad. Um, it’s still on. No, it’s off.
[00:36:23] Todd: No, it was on. I know it’s off now. Okay. Trust me.
[00:36:27] Cathy: Um, so I don’t, I lost my
[00:36:30] Todd: thought. I’m sorry, babe. I screwed you up.
[00:36:31] Cathy: Um, we, oh, I know we want to be teaching because we have limited time with our kids and that is understandable because we want to get a bunch of things in.
[00:36:42] Cathy: I’m just repeating what I said to get back on that track, but I also think that they learn by watching us. So we don’t always have to speak things the way that we are. When we’re around them, when we’re in the kitchen, when we’re laughing with our partner, when we’re laughing with friends, when we’re dancing around to music, they learn from that.
[00:37:01] Cathy: A lot more
[00:37:02] Todd: by then what we say.
[00:37:03] Cathy: Yes, and I also think they learn by having conversations with them that have no agenda. You can, you know, you gotta, how, what did she say? How old are her kids? Six and three. Six and three. So you got a six year old who loves a certain TV show. I don’t know if this TV show is anymore.
[00:37:20] Cathy: Todd and I are
[00:37:20] Todd: so old. If it was, uh, 2006, we would say Blue’s Clues. Oh, we didn’t watch
[00:37:26] Cathy: Blue’s Clues. That was like my niece and nephew. I watched it. You didn’t watch Blue’s
[00:37:30] Todd: Clues. I still do. I watched it last night. That’s what
[00:37:33] Cathy: Maddie and Max watched and they’re like 26 or 23 or whatever. But our girls, like the shows we watched were Super Why, The Wonder Pets, um, Little Bear.
[00:37:44] Cathy: Little Bear. I love Little Bear. Uh, The Berenstain Bears, um, Word Girl, Lady Redundant Woman. I loved Word Girl. They had funny… Fun things in that show. Anyway, to like, they have a TV show like that, or the movies, the Disney movies they like, or the TV [00:38:00] shows, whatever. Have conversations about the characters, like, oh my gosh, don’t you love that one?
[00:38:04] Cathy: Or don’t you, you know, tell me about why you like this, or tell me what you saw on your show, or tell me about your book, you know? Tell me about, um, you know, the games you’re playing, or these toys. Like, have, have conversations that don’t have an agenda of
[00:38:17] Todd: teaching. Find the thread. And
[00:38:20] Cathy: then you do the same thing.
[00:38:22] Cathy: You talk about your music and your this and that or your blanket that you had as a kid or, you know, like, it doesn’t, you know, Tom and I always use these pop culture things. It doesn’t have to be pop culture. It’s just about life. I think kids learn how to have conversations by the conversations that are had at home.
[00:38:39] Cathy: And if every conversation is a teaching. Then that’s the way they’re going to talk to people. I know that sounds really like, really? But yes, they’re going to be the kid who’s always telling kids what to do. Versus having like, kids have like, conversation about being interested in
[00:38:53] Todd: somebody else’s… Or the kid’s just going to get stuck in being taught and not want to teach.
[00:38:57] Todd: It could go many different ways. You want to hear a little Little Bear theme, sweetie? Just to bring you back? Sure.
[00:39:07] Todd: Does this bring you back at all? This isn’t
[00:39:08] Cathy: the theme. Oh. This is like, just part of the show. No. Oh, here we go.
[00:39:15] Todd: It’s just a very, for those, you guys should kick it back old school and put on Little Bear. Little Bear
[00:39:19] Cathy: was so
[00:39:20] Todd: soothing. It’s very soothing. I totally
[00:39:23] Cathy: agree. We had Owl, and we had No Feet, who was a snake.
[00:39:26] Cathy: I love
[00:39:27] Todd: No Feet, you want to know why? Who’s the girl? Because he had no feet. I know. Um, yeah, those are great shows.
[00:39:33] Cathy: I just sent the girls a meme the other day that it was funny, it said, um, it was, Like a cartoon of a squirrel in a tree, like cooking at a stove, and it said what I thought animals did when I was little.
[00:39:45] Cathy: Yeah. I thought like animals had homes, like Little Bear had a home, you know, like we did. And I just think that’s very fun child
[00:39:52] Todd: stuff. I remember my mom used to think there were little people in the radio. Playing music. I never understood. I think of what [00:40:00] my example of that, and I had a, I had a few, but I have since forgotten what my weird, you know, unless somebody tells you, you just make your own assumptions.
[00:40:08] Cathy: Because you only have the knowledge you have. That’s right. So it’s like, you can’t imagine how it could be anything. Well,
[00:40:13] Todd: what I, when we went to breakfast in Iowa City last Sunday, there was a bunch of bear heads and deer, and I remember taking one of my daughters to my office in Lincolnwood, and one of my coworkers has like a big deer, and Mounted on the wall.
[00:40:26] Todd: So what is that called? It’s a stuffed deer? Whatever, whatever. What’s the word for that when
[00:40:31] Cathy: people stuff
[00:40:31] Todd: animals? Uh, taxidermy? Taxidermy. And uh, my daughter never seen that and she was terrified. She was like, what is it? And of course she’d be terrified because it makes no sense. There is this real looking animal whose head is coming out of the wall.
[00:40:49] Todd: Yeah. That’s crazy. Yeah. Terrified.
[00:40:52] Cathy: That’s the end of my story. Okay, so hopefully that is helpful. I don’t know if it is or not. Okay, um, so here’s another one that I think this was, so we have two left, so let’s try and get them in time. Okay. I would love. Guidance on how to parent my curious until oh, we’ve done this one.
[00:41:09] Cathy: Let’s do this one. Okay, how to navigate the bridge between the years Our kids so heavily rely on us and when they go off on their own So she said I’m a parent of four girls 9 12 14 16 I have found my two oldest ones aren’t sharing much of their life experiences with me Well, I do my best to just listen whenever I can and always try to be my better self Oh, and I’m always trying to be my better self.
[00:41:33] Cathy: I want to have an amazing relationship with my girls now and when they are older. But if we continue this path, it doesn’t seem like we’ll be close. How can I get my kids to let me be a part of their lives and to share with me? I’ve talked a little to them about this so they know I won’t judge, fix, shame, and then I just want to be close to them.
[00:41:50] Cathy: Thanks for all the guidance you have given me.
[00:41:52] Todd: Um, so my quick thing on this is totally normal for your 14 year old and your 16 year old to not want to talk to you as much as they did [00:42:00] when they were 10 and 12, so just normalize that thought. And, uh, I don’t know, we did a, I’m going to look it up right now, we did a podcast.
[00:42:06] Todd: We interviewed Dan Siegel one time and he had a book called, was it Brainstorm or something like that? It was all about teenagers. And, but we did another podcast and we just played clips from his TED talk and it was Even better than the interview that we did with him. And it just gives you an under, a better understanding of the teenage brain because a teenage brain is so much different than us old people who supposedly have a fully developed prefrontal
[00:42:31] Cathy: cortex.
[00:42:31] Cathy: And this one connects to the laundry one that we were doing. Like a 16, like a 10 year old was actually doing laundry because they were more interested in pleasing us when they were 10 and then they become 16 and that’s not where their brain is anymore. And it doesn’t mean you give up. talking to them about it, but you can understand.
[00:42:50] Todd: Yes, I totally agree. What, is there anything else you want to
[00:42:53] Cathy: say? For sure. I would say a few things. Like, you’re like, I talked to them about it and I told them I wouldn’t judge and why aren’t they telling me things? Um, I would let them go a little bit, like, and I don’t even let them leave. They’ll be back.
[00:43:04] Cathy: They’ll be back. Like, what I mean by that is respect their need to separate a little bit. They’re individuating and what you are doing is saying, but I want to be close to them and these are all your needs. You’re like, but I want this and I want this. And don’t get me wrong. Everyone has the needs you have.
[00:43:22] Cathy: There’s nothing selfish about them. But it’s, it’s about remembering that as a parent, the goal is not I want something. It’s what do I do to support these kids and becoming themselves? You are kind of the, the figure in their life that allows them to grow. And if you are saying to them, I want you to tell me everything, then you’re kind of restricting them.
[00:43:43] Cathy: You’re basically saying.
[00:43:46] Todd: Yeah, and you could potentially, uh, overwhelm them with that pressure and then they won’t come to you when the time is right. So, it’s a, it’s a dance that you got to figure out and some days you’re going to screw it up because that’s what parenting is. And [00:44:00] other days you’re going to crush it.
[00:44:01] Todd: And more days than not, your kids are probably not going to give you the best version of themselves because they, Probably feel some type of unconditional love. So, well,
[00:44:10] Cathy: and I would, there’s nothing wrong with the things you’ve done thus far. You’re like, you know, if you ever need to come to me, I will be here in a nonjudgmental way.
[00:44:17] Cathy: That’s beautiful. Like, that’s so important for them to know. So you’ve done good work there, letting them know that your goal is never to shame and that you’re a support system, but then allow them to do that rather than make them do that. Hold on. Hold on one second. Oh, I thought you were going to talk.
[00:44:31] Cathy: You were going to yawn.
[00:44:32] Todd: No, I’m not doing anything. Oh, okay. You look like you were
[00:44:34] Cathy: getting ready. No, I’m a little out of it. Okay. So I think what I’m saying is love them through this transition by releasing the tension a little bit, like supporting them in individuating a little bit. And still, like, I think some of the things that, that were important to me when the girls were getting older was can we have brunch on Sunday?
[00:44:58] Cathy: So maybe they’re busy Thursday night, Friday, Saturday, but we have brunch on Sunday and I just want to like catch up as much as much as we can, but not like tell me everything, but more like here I am. I love you. I want to be with you. Maybe we have deep talks. Maybe we don’t. And, but I’m staying. I’m finding new creative ways to be with them without adding an extra layer of pressure on them.
[00:45:23] Cathy: Sure. Does that make sense?
[00:45:24] Todd: Okay, go ahead Todd. I was going to say that this woman, I don’t know if she’s on the team, if she’s on Team Zen or not, but the fact that she’s asking the question tells me she’s doing a much better job than she probably gives herself credit for. So, I just want to say my guess is you’re probably doing a lot more right things than you think you are.
[00:45:43] Todd: And just keep trying to engage in a friendly, healthy way. And if they’re not up to it, I remember one time, Jaycee, uh, my oldest daughter, we were going to lacrosse and I was like, I was driving her. She was like 14 and I was ready to talk. You know, [00:46:00] I’m connected with her all day, the last few days and. I was ready, like, this is the time we’re going to talk.
[00:46:05] Todd: And she had no interest in connecting at all, uh, because she probably had a crappy school day that day. Or just a long day. Or just a long day, whatever. And, um, you know, my ego got involved. I’m like, no, this is, I want to talk to you. And she just wasn’t ready. So you have to like… Well, and again, that
[00:46:21] Cathy: was you.
[00:46:22] Cathy: Like you needed that. Yeah. And this is, this is why it’s important to notice this, not to shame ourselves, but the whole idea of this is, you know, this is what I want. And I’m trying to create this. It’s very one sided. You’re coming up with this idea in your mind of how it’s going to go. And you’re not paying attention to what this person needs.
[00:46:39] Cathy: Sure. And I think you will find that if they say, well, mom, I’m just going to go to my room tonight. I’m just going to hang out. And you’re like, okay, that’s great. Um, I’ll come in and say goodnight to you. Or, okay, that sounds great. Tomorrow, do you want to have dinner? Or, you know, like giving them a little space.
[00:46:55] Cathy: And again, I know some parents will be like, well, what if my kid goes up to the room and never comes out? That’s an extreme. And that’s when you go and say, hey, I noticed you’re never coming out. Like, again, there are no like hard and fast rules here. You’re trying to find this middle place. But your 14 and 16 year old are there.
[00:47:11] Cathy: What’s most important to them right now? They love you and they honor you, but they’re focusing on peer relationships. They’re focusing on possibly romantic relationships. They’re focusing on their own grades, their leadership, their brain is elsewhere and your ability to understand that. And say, it’s just like the laundry question, how can I help you?
[00:47:32] Cathy: How can I make life feel less stressful to you? Rather than, why don’t you tell me anything? Why don’t you talk to me? That’s then an added pressure. Sure. And I feel like they’re going to talk to you more if they know you don’t need it. I think kids really pick up on that. My parents need something from me thing.
[00:47:49] Cathy: Yep. And I think if we can be a little more cool. Cool,
[00:47:53] Todd: Todd. That’s like us.
[00:47:55] Cathy: Cool. Well, it’s like that word cool. I don’t even know what that word means because sometimes it [00:48:00] means like Distant and too good for something but what I mean cool is it’s like relax. Yeah, cool.
[00:48:07] Todd: Chill out. Chill out. So was that the last question?
[00:48:10] Todd: Um,
[00:48:11] Cathy: yeah, because the other one I think we answered.
[00:48:14] Todd: So we can close you up early. We’re about 10 minutes early.
[00:48:17] Cathy: You’re listening to this on the week of Thanksgiving. I think if you’re not, maybe you’re listening to it later, you know, happy Thanksgiving or holidays or whatever you’re celebrating, but we just want to take an opportunity and say, we’re grateful for you.
[00:48:30] Cathy: Todd and I have been doing this for now 13 years, heading into our 14th, if you can believe it. And we just really appreciate these. Thanks. This connection that we have with you and the ability to do these podcasts, and we just love you very much. So thank you everybody who listens. Um,
[00:48:47] Todd: do you want to take us out with a certain gratitude song, sweetie?
[00:48:51] Todd: Anything like that? Gratitude song? You know what? I’ll, I got it. I got it right here. Here we go. Oh, jeez. This is
[00:48:58] Cathy: mean. Nobody’s grateful for
[00:49:01] Todd: this. I am. I like Nestle.
[00:49:15] Todd: N E S T L E S
[00:49:17] Cathy: How about you play What, babe? How about you play either The Mess Around or
[00:49:24] Todd: Every Time You Go Away
[00:49:26] Cathy: From
[00:49:27] Todd: Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. I like it. I like it. We’re gonna go Mess Around. Cause that’s…
[00:49:31] Cathy: So we’re ending on this kind of high note with Ray Charles. So everybody, watch Planes, Trains, and Automobiles this week.
[00:49:39] Cathy: Do yourself
[00:49:40] Todd: a favor and watch PT& A. Barbecue. People too. Mess around. Mess around. Mess around. Better do the mess around.[00:50:00]
[00:50:09] Todd: Mess around.
[00:50:25] Todd: Is that enough? Keep tracking everybody.