At some point in our lives, we’ve all said this line when talking about our less-than-perfect childhoods:
If I ever have kids, I’ll never……
….make them feel like they’re less than enough
….yell at them in the middle of the grocery store
…lash out or make unreasonable rules
None of us want to repeat the mistakes our (often well-intentioned) parents made raising us. And yet, we unconsciously find ourselves repeating the cycle.
Parenting is hard. But things tend to get a lot more complicated when we act without introspection, without reflection, without consciousness.
Conscious parenting takes awareness, not only of your child, but of yourself. When we train ourselves to become aware of why we do things or react in a certain way, we can interrupt our patterns and choose a different response. We become better parents. And our children grow up to be better adults.
Willing to do the inner work to become a better parent? Here are 5 principles of conscious parenting that you can start working on now.
- See your kids for who they are: human beings. Parents often forget that their kids have their own quirks, preferences, and boundaries, which might conflict with the parents’ way of doing things! Your task isn’t to raise a clone of yourself, but to help your child grow and develop into the unique individual that they are.
- Listen with love. When voices are high or even hysterical—that’s when your child is telling you something important. You may feel the urge to yell right back, but you’ll learn a lot more if you can pause and listen instead.
- Build them up, don’t tear them down. Being overly critical can undermine your child’s confidence, but so can too much praise. Work to acknowledge your child’s achievements in a neutral way. Let them know that it’s possible to be good at something but still have room for improvement.
- Explain your reasoning. Children, even older children, may not understand the guidelines and boundaries you set for them at first. Take time to explain why they can’t watch TV for 4 hours straight or pouring milk all over dad’s laptop.
- Be flexible. Your parenting style should adjust to the unique needs of your child—not the other way around! Practice the 4 principles above, keep in mind that what works for one child won’t necessarily work for another, and adapt accordingly.
These principles are truly just the tip of the iceberg. If you’re ready to become a fully conscious parent, join me in the 90-Day Parenting Reset Program coming soon in 2021. This course will help you shift negative emotional patterns that eat away at healthy communication with your child.
It’s time to stop repeating old mistakes and let the past be in the past. You can step into the future by signing up for the 90-Day Parenting Reset Program coming soon in 2021.
P.S. Want to stop making the same mistakes your parents made? Stay tuned for our 2021 announcement for our next course.