It is uncommon to speak in terms of Mothering and Fathering in the context of our relationship… Unless of course we are talking about raising our children. But I’ve been presenting this concept as a way to continue to heal and grow ourselves. As a personal development tool, and more recently as a relationship enrichment tool… Today I’m expanding the Fathering repertoire by sharing the importance of personal and partner’s character strengths.
Remember, we all have female and male energy and can embrace characteristics and embody attributes from both. When I’m presenting on Mothering and Fathering, and Female and Male Energy, I’m not talking about gender or sexuality… I’m referring to our inherent energies… Our job is to balance how we embrace, activate and utilize them…
Mothering flows from female energy and Fathering flows from male energy, and they can both be done by women and men… There is no judgement as to which is better or preferred, and this is not a form of sexism, genderism, or such. This just is. Anything else is a social construct we’ve unknowingly accepted…
But please note, I’m not denying the oppression of female energy and women over millennia… If nothing else, I’m actually highlighting the importance of undoing this oppression. I’m doing it through what I know best, which is personal development and relationship enrichment…
- Mothering has to do with nurturing and caring.
- Fathering has to do with structuring and disciplining.
When we embrace providing these characteristics to ourselves, we reparent ourselves… I refer you to the book Healing Your Emotional Self, for top notch work on reparenting ourselves…
Reparenting ourselves means giving ourselves what we needed and didn’t get growing up. How we were hurt and not met growing up created wounds, limiting believes and other goodies that have permeated how we organized ourselves and cope with life. Including how we show up in relationship, get triggered and create our stuck dynamics… Reparenting ourselves is a way of healing and releasing ourselves from that stronghold…
Then, bring this to the context of our relationship and we have an exponential impact… Now, I’m not talking about being a mother or a father to your partner and vice versa. That’s the worst thing we can do… I’m talking about being Mothering and Fathering. I’m talking about your interactions and how you approach your partner and the relationship using more:
- Nurturing, compassion, softness, flexibility, and such (Mothering) for engendering feelings of belonging, worthiness, and acceptance.
- RoleModeling/guiding, routines, structure, systems and such (Fathering) for engendering feelings of safety, security, and stability.
You see how these can be salve to core wounds?
The key here is to sprinkle the Mothering characteristics into your interactions with yourself and your partner. And the Fathering characteristics to how you do your relationship and your life.
This means be nice to yourself (self-care) and your partner (other-care) and embrace a Relationship Enrichment Lifestyle™… Voila!
Work Your Character Strengths
So, where do Character Strengths come in? Working on developing our Character Strengths is a Fathering tactic as it involves learning, honing, applying. Mothering is feminine with being, expanding, flowing… The active and directed part of this endeavor is masculine and therefore Fathering…
Working on developing our Character Strengths helps us become more of who we are, more integrated and robust. It helps us have a richer human experience, and it helps us bring a better self to our relationship and our partner…
Having strong Character Strengths helps partners avoid the many pitfalls they would otherwise encounter in their relationship…
Our personal and our partner’s character strengths influence the character of our relationship with things like a love, kindness, gratitude, honesty, forgiveness, perspective, self-regulation, teamwork, etc.
The VIA Institute of Character created a Character Strengths Survey to measure the good qualities in people and to counterbalance the Disorder Statistical Manual (DSM) used to diagnose mental disorders…
They identified 24 Character Strengths that were classified into 6 categories:
- Wisdom – Creativity, curiosity, judgment, love of learning, perspective
- Courage – Bravery, honesty, perseverance, zest
- Humanity – Kindness, love, social intelligence
- Justice – Fairness, leadership, teamwork
- Temperance – Forgiveness, humility, prudence, self-regulation
- Transcendence – Appreciation of beaty & excellence, gratitude, hope, humor, spirituality
Doesn’t it make sense that to develop this further in ourselves would only but enrich our relationship?
As we continue to expand our Fathering repertoire, we are polishing the use of our male energy for more security, stability, productivity, efficiency, and results in our life. Let’s continue to create our Best Self, Best Relationship and Best Life!
ASSIGNMENT: Intentionally integrate your Character Strengths into your life and your relationship…
- Take the survey to identify your current strengths and where you can stand to invest in some more development.
- The easiest way to work on developing a characteristic is by creating a Habit to help you practice it… Choose 3 Character Strengths you are looking to develop and create Habits for them into your daily routine: Doing a behavior or activity that would help you practice the strength. And, keep working this method until you feel you’ve made progress developing the Character Strengths you desire.
As with anything, when you bring consciousness, focus and attention to something, Awesomeness happens. I wish this for you in your life and your relationship.
Wishing you much joy, connection and love today and always…
With Much Love & Light!
PS – Related Posts:
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Keep having the same old fight?
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Implement pleasure and delight habits (video)
Caring is not just for mothers
Need fathering in your life?
How to reprogram yourself
Are you a strong partnership?
Do you support each other?
The key is collaboration
The key is embracing a relationship enrichment lifestyle (video)
Intentional habits to glide into the new year with ease
The power of having Intentional Habits™
Copyright (c) 2021 Emma K. Viglucci. All rights reserved.
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Emma K. Viglucci, LMFT is the Founder and Director of Metropolitan Marriage & Family Therapy, PLLC, a private practice that specializes in working with couples, she is the creator of the MetroRelationship™ philosophy and the Successful Couple Strategy™ that assist couples succeed at their relationship and their life. Stay Connected™ with Emma and receive weekly connection notes in your inbox with Personal Development and Relationship Enrichment insights and strategies, visit: www.metrorelationship.com