10, November 2011
I've recently been showing my three year old daughter how to put on a shirt by herself. She's pretty independent. She was actually trying to learn by herself. I let her try it a few times and then asked if I could show her how to do it.
It forced me to think about the exact steps I go through when I do it myself.
I first turn it right side out. Then I put my arms through the bottom and then out through the arm holes. Then I pull the shirt close to my body so that the arms of the shirt are at my shoulders. The whole shirt is then bunched close to my chest. From there I grab the back of the neck of the shirt with one hand (my right) and pull it up over my head. (may have to bend head forwards for this.) Then I leg the shirt fall down my body or if I'm wearing skin tight, I pull it down like a snake trying to wiggle back into skin its just shed.
Now I am aware of how I put on a shirt. And I can now break it down and teach my daughter in logical steps.
It's kind of cool seeing her get it step by step.
She's learning how to do something and I am learning how to teach something.
Both of us are becoming more conscious, more capable as a result.
And rather than forcing her to get it right the first time I'm letting her do it by herself. Actually she is pretty independent. She's happy to struggle by herself. Only when she's truly stuck, or tired (or being lazy) does she ask me to help.
The interesting thing, apart from helping my daughter, was how I put my shirt on automatically without thinking about the steps necessary to doing it. It is only when I had to teach my daughter that I asked myself how to I do it.
How much more aware can we be if we ask ourselves, what are we doing and how are we doing it?