In most parenting conversations, I see a pattern. When faced with defiant behavior, parents desperately look for ways to change children.
But, what if the best way to change our children's behavior was to change our perspective?
"Are you suggesting that my child's bad behavior is my perspective's fault?" I can hear you asking. Don't get me wrong. I am not here to add yet another responsibility to your weary shoulders.
In fact, I'm about to present a liberating idea: parenting your inner parent.
Here's a quote I love:
“Most of what we call parenting doesn’t take place between a parent and child but within the parent.”
Traditionally, parenting involves hierarchy. The parent rules and the child obeys. Traditions, culture, lack of dedicated research have been collectively responsible for painting the misleading picture that parents are entitled to control children. (Hint: we're not.)
Because children are so malleable, we skip the option to bend and flex to adapt to these new souls that walk into our lives. Instead, we rely on their bending and flexing. And in most cases, they comply.
But, modern psychology says that the transformation of the parent is the primary reason why a relationship between parent and child exists.
Parents who fail to complete their transformation from a wounded child to a healed adult are doomed to re-live their traumatic history, disguised as their children's behavioral challenges.
Here's an excerpt from the book The Conscious Parent by Shefali Tsabary:
“It’s as if I were six again. When my daughter yells at me, I feel the way I did when my mother yelled at me. When she slams the door on me and shuts me out of her world, I feel as though I’m being punished, like I did something wrong. The difference is that whereas with my parents I could never protest, yell, or scream, now I can’t stop. Every time my daughter makes me feel like my parents made me feel, it’s as if my world crashes around me and I lose my sanity.”
Through therapy, this mother unearthed the hidden childhood wounds that she unconsciously held on to in her parenting. Her relationship with her daughter drastically improved, and so did her daughter's mental health.
This week I'd like to finish off with a few verses from a poem I read years ago that stuck with me to this day.
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
🥄 Nurturing my favorite moms and dads
Here are a few articles I wrote recently on the blog:
What is the best way to start mindful parenting?: Most of us lack the time, tolerance, and specific knowledge to practice mindful parenting daily. In this article, you will find the best ways to implement mindful parenting in your life.
Best books on positive discipline: Discipline has a terrible connotation but did you know that the word's origin says something else? Here is a list of my top 5 positive discipline books for you.
Thank you for reading. ❤️
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Until next Saturday!