Leading by Example

After my divorce, I immediately jumped into a new relationship before the ink had dried on our separation agreement. I was committed to my new partner for 6 months before I realized we were better off as friends. A couple weeks passed by when I met someone new and found myself in yet another committed relationship. This lasted 9 months before I “woke up” and understood that I’ll never be happy in a relationship until I’m happy with myself.

In November of 2016, I made a commitment to be in a relationship with myself. I decided to take one year to focus on myself rather than pouring all my energy into a relationship and this turned out to be the best decision ever!

This is what I have achieved over the past 12 months:
1) I started a new career path that I absolutely LOVE! I get to teach leadership & development skills to indigenous communities across British Columbia and I facilitate support groups for single moms through the YWCA.

2) I created a non-profit organization that is growing beyond belief; sharing free resources (courses, support groups, one on one connections) with respect to Purpose, Clarity & Love.

3) The most important achievement of them all is this; my kids see their mother leading by example. I’m showing my kids what it looks like to live a meaningful life, create a positive impact and stay true to yourself.

Over the past 12 months,  I left the world of finance and entered the Non-Profit realm and I became a “minimalist.”  I often wonder how my kids interpret the contrast between me and their father. I live in a small 2 bdrm suite and drive a ’95 Corolla while their dad lives in a huge 4000 sq ft home and drives a new BMW.

Earlier this year, Nala, my 5 year old daughter, said to me “Mommy, why does Daddy have a big house and you have a small house?”
I replied with “because Daddy makes big money so he has a big house… Mommy is starting over and she makes little money so she has a little house.”
Nala nodded her head as she pondered this thought.
I then picked her up, put her on my lap and said “Baby, it’s not how much money you make that’s important… what’s important is how you treat other people, what’s important is WHO you are, how good of a person you are.”
Nala leaned in and said “I love you mommy.” I felt the love as we cuddled together in my cozy little home.

Last month I took a contract to teach a leadership program in Lax Kw’alaams, and I agreed to stay on the Native reserve for 12 days at a time, only seeing my kids every second weekend. Feeling guilty for being away from my kids for so long, I was encouraged the other day while I was on a video call with Nala.

My daughter answered the call, happy as can be and we chatted for a bit when she asked me, “how was your day mommy?”
I told her I had a good day at work and she replied with “Mommy your work is more important than Daddy’s” I laughed and said “Baby, everybody’s work is important.”

When we got off the phone, I smiled, reflecting upon how my daughter came to that conclusion.

Yes I’m a busy mom with a clear mission and I work a lot, I sometimes worry that I’m not spending enough time with my kids. But it’s moments like these that help me to understand that the best mother I can be is one who leads by example.

I’m proud of the mother I am, I’m not a traditional mom, but I am me… authentic and true. I stand behind the values I teach and I not only tell my kids how important it is to treat others with respect, compassion and kindness, the main thing is; I show them what it looks like to embody these values. Courageously leading by example.