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Parenting & Life Wisdom and the 6 Benefits of Discomfort

I'm in constant pursuit of wisdom and discerning God's voice. Whether it be through the words of a person, nature, a billboard or song, I'm always looking for the meaning and message. As I wrote last year, birds built a nest on our front door wreath. As I watched the process from start to finish, I was amazed by all I learned--not just about the sweetness of building a nest, laying the eggs, and the growth of her babies--rather, I gleaned years worth of parenting wisdom in about 6 weeks, including the six benefits of discomfort. I do believe God used the birds to send me a message.

This spring season the birds are back again. Apparently the word is out that our front door wreath is a great place to start a family, as we're on our second bird's nest and babies. It also feels like God is still trying to impart some parenting and life wisdom :-) Needless to say, I continue to be in awe of the much that I decided to do a short video above, detailing the beauty, the disgust, and the wisdom.

3 Tips on How to Raise an Adult

As I think about all I've learned by watching the birds, I also think about the book How to Raise an Adult by Julie Lythcott-Haims (she highlights the ways in which over-parenting harms children, their stressed-out parents, and society at large.) While I haven't read the book, I have listened to her in interviews, speeches and podcasts. She's excellent! In one of her speeches she referenced Psychologist Madeline Levine (author of the Price of Privilege which I have read and is outstanding!), who said, "For the sake of our kids mental health and wellness, we must NOT do":

  1. What your kid can already do

  2. What your kid can almost do

  3. What s about your own ego

The birds execute this brilliantly!

Female author of How to Raise an Adult, wearing blue jeans and smiling


  1. How to Raise an Adult- A New York Times best-seller. In this provocative anti-helicopter parenting manifesto, Julie highlights the ways overparenting harms children, their parents, and society at large—and offers practical alternative strategies for raising kids to be self-sufficient, resilient, and successful.

  2. Your Turn: How to Be an Adult- What does it mean to be an adult? In the twentieth century, psychologists came up with five markers of adulthood: finish your education, get a job, leave home, marry, and have children. Since then, every generation has been held to those same markers. Yet so much has changed about the world and living in it since that sequence was formulated. All of those markers are choices, and they’re all valid, but any one person’s choices along those lines do not make them more or less an adult.

  3. Real American: A Memoir- In this powerful and award-winning reflection on identity, belonging, and community, Julie details growing up Black and biracial in white spaces. She shares the toll that racism, discrimination, and microaggressions took on her self-worth, and how she found acceptance through the healing power of community.

Female author of The Price of Privilege wearing a crimson blouse and big smile

Madeline Levine, Ph.D.

  1. The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids. In this ground-breaking book on the children of affluence, a well-known clinical psychologist exposes the epidemic of emotional problems that are disabling America’s privileged youth, thanks, in large part, to normalized, intrusive parenting that stunts the crucial development of the self.

  2. Teach Your Children Well: Why Values and Coping Skills MATTER MORE Than Grades, Trophies, or "Fat Envelopes"- TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL focuses on choice—how we view success, raise our children, and expend our energies and resources. It is also about the courage to make the changes we believe in. The time has come, says Levine, to return our overwrought families to a healthier and saner version of themselves.

  3. Ready or Not: Preparing Our Kids to Thrive in an Uncertain and Rapidly Changing World- The New York Times bestselling author of The Price of Privilege and Teach Your Children Well explores how today’s parenting techniques and our myopic educational system are failing to prepare children for their certain-to-be-uncertain future—and how we can reverse course to ensure their lasting adaptability, resilience, health and happiness.

6 Life-Giving Benefits of Discomfort

As we've entered the end of school and graduation season, I thought it might be likely that I'm not the only mom out there who can benefit from the wisdom. Additionally, I also think this message is beyond that of parenting. It's a great message for all relationships and individuals, as it's the universal reminder that discomfort is the necessary catalyst for growth, confidence, success, wisdom, understanding and ultimately, happiness.


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