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Wow, 2020 has been eyeopening for me when it comes to conscious parenting. I feel like I have been pushed to my limits; from homeschooling to quarantining. The stress that Covid-19 has put our world under is unfathomable.
This pandemic has changed the course of my kid’s life. They will forever remember these years as a time of uncertainty, stress and pain. Losing loved ones just escalates it and being cooped up for weeks has been unbearable. I have definitely been unconscious and totally self absorbed. And disciplining the kids have been harder than ever.
It has been rough. If I ever thought I had lost control, the time would be now. Absolutely everything fell apart this year. And there wasn’t a thing I could do to fix it, specifically for my kids.
I was never in control because it’s just an illusion. Our children learn to handle their emotions by observing how we react to stress. I don’t react to stress well and so the cycle continues and spins out of control.
They say when you’re in enough pain, you will get help. I kept fighting my kids, my husband and myself. Did I really think my way was the way?
Dr. Shefali Tsabary, author of Conscious Parent reeled me back in and opened up my eyes. I realized that I was living unconsciously. Reacting to my past and my ideas of what parenting should be according to that.
What is Conscious Parenting?
Dr. Shifali explains, “Instead of being merely the receiver of the parents’ psychological and spiritual legacy, children function as ushers of the parents’ development. Parents unwittingly pass on an inheritance of psychological pain and emotional shallowness. To handle the behavior that results, traditional books on parenting abound with clever techniques for control and quick fixes for dysfunction.
In Dr. Shefali Tsabary’s conscious approach to parenting, however, children serve as mirrors of their parents’ forgotten self. Those willing to look in the mirror have an opportunity to establish a relationship with their own inner state of wholeness. Once they find their way back to their essence, parents enter into communion with their children, shifting away from the traditional parent-to-child “know it all” approach and more towards a mutual parent-with-child relationship.
The pillars of the parental ego crumble as the parents awaken to the ability of their children to transport them into a state of presence.”
Where do I Start?
Ask yourself; What is my parenting philosophy?
What’s your approach to parenting?
I know for myself that how I parent effects my children. I know this from experience!
I use to say I would never parent like my parents. In fact, I thought I had it all planned out – until I had kids.
Many of the things I said I would never do, I did because of my own unresolved issues. By imposing my will on them, I thought that was love. I had good intentions. Then I would over compensate out of guilt. And the cycle continued.
Dr. Shifali: “Coming from unconsciousness ourselves, we bequeath to them both our unresolved needs, unmet expectations, and frustrated dreams. Despite our best intentions, we enslave them to the emotional inheritance we received from our parents, binding them to the debilitating legacy of ancestors our past.”
It seems as if it is a never ending job that will never be done perfectly. However, it’s about the journey, not the destination and if you have found yourself here, reading this, you are an amazing parent because you care. End of story. You are searching; soul searching to be a better parent.
Our children don’t expect us to be perfect. They just want to be heard and accepted for their unique self.
If you wonder if you are a conscious parent, ask yourself these 5 questions.
Are you Listening to your Child’s Spirit?
Dr. Shefali says, “you are raising a spirit throbbing with it’s own signature.” Our children aren’t concerned about the things us adults care about like achievements or how things look to others. Children are just jumping into life, wanting to experience everything. Our responses to them can brake them or encourage them. Listen to their spirit. Honor who your child is.
Do you Validate your Children’s behavior or Being?
When you tell your children you understand, are you just saying it or are you saying, “I’m here for you. I accept that this is what you are going through. It’s called showing empathy for our children’s emotions. Let them experience their experiences in their own way. “We have to suspend our own feelings so they can align with our children,” Dr. Shifali says. Don’t let your ego take over.
Do you Revel in your Child’s Ordinariness?
If you were robbed of the experience of being ordinary will have a hard tine excepting their child’ ordinariness. If your child feels pressure to always excel then they will lack the experience of being authentic. We need to find their awesomeness in being ordinary. Their self worth is not based on their achievements and appreciate the simple things that life has to offer.
Do you Really Know Why they Did what they Did?
Do you understand the motivation behind your children’s actions? We don’t know their intent but so often shame them and blame them. Then they internalize the belief that they are bad. Children bully when they feel pain themselves.
Do you Own your Part in your Children’s behavior?
It’s our job to teach our kids alternative ways of handling how they are feeling. We have to take our children’s behavior seriously and show them consequences from their bad choices. Dr. Shifali says to set aside any sense of superiority. Calmly talk to them. Let them know that their bad choices are not okay without yelling.
Is your Child Growing you up?
Ask yourself, am I aware of how I am dealing with my emotions around my child or am I being triggered by my past? Dr. Shifali says that we have to look inside ourselves and what we are bringing to the relationship. If you can’t access your joy, you will be a mirror of your children’s joy.
This is a lot, I know to absorb. I still have to reread a lot of it to absorb it. Accessing my joy is not my normal state, lol. But this book sure does help and I will fill you in on the journey.