Guess What? You’re Human!

arm“Tell me about a specific strength (or weakness) you have.” This is a very popular interview question these days by hiring managers and recruiters. Your answer can either land you the job of your dreams or send you back to the job boards along with millions of other people.

Knowing what you’re good at and what you’re not is critical in parenting as well, especially if you are a single parent. Why? It’s simple. Parents are the CEO’s of their family unit. Look at any well-run organization and it is clear that it takes many people of varying talents to keep the lights on. The CEO does not know how to do everything. So she hires people who do. She knows her strengths and  compensates for her weaknesses.

As a parent, there are things that you do well and things that… let’s just say, you could use a little help with. For example, you may be terrific at planning activities for your children. You always have a cool craft project to fill those rainy days. But when it comes to cooking, “take-out” is your middle name.


Society today does not allow for this. Instead of encouraging you to get help with your areas of weakness, you’re expected to simply turn your weaknesses into strengths and become Supermom. This is unrealistic and for the single mom – it’s downright criminal.

I’m good at a lot of things. For example, I can help with homework, manage crazy activity schedules, and put a decent meal on the table on a somewhat regular basis. I’m not good at science fair projects, helping my daughter put together a stylish outfit, or remembering all the stats from the latest game, to my son’s dismay.  (Oh, and I’m so NOT the mom you’d call when you’re struggling with how to turn the contents of a box of craft supplies into anything other than a donation to your local after-school program.)

Does this make me a bad mother? Are my kids scarred for life? Uh. No.

I live my life and parent my children by this credo that I learned from my mother.

“Just do the best you can each day.”


mom balance

Some days my best is outstanding. Other days, my best is likely to send my kids to therapy for the remainder of their lives. But guess what? I’m human. And do you know something else? So. Are. You.

Want to be a better parent? Stop trying to be great at all the things you’re not great at! Then, start being REALLY great at the things you’re REALLY great at! So simple.

If you’re not a good cook or you just hate the very thought of planning a meal, then figure out a way to get a good meal on the table through take-out or a home-delivery service. Remove that burden, and see how much lighter you feel.

Rather than beating yourself up for things you can’t do, embrace the things you can do and do them really, really well. What a positive change this will be for you and for your children.

Your children will immediately see the difference in you because you will be less stressed and will have a better attitude. How great is that?

Jen’s Gem: Know and appreciate your strengths. They are your gifts.

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Jennifer Covello, Copyright 2011-2024