Mindful Parenting

We are in it together, Mindfulness helps . . . .

We are in it together, Mindfulness helps . . . .

Mindfulness: Attending to the current situation with a kind and curious attitude.

Mindfulness doesn’t mean ‘let it go’ or ignore or accept bad behavior. Mindful parenting means that we live in the now, our current reality and we approach our problems with kindness and curiosity. In getting ready for next week’s webinar I’ve been reading up on the matter and have loved the book, Mindful Discipline.

We often don’t combine mindfulness (which we think is ‘nice’ & permissive) and discipline (which we think is ‘mean’ & punishment).

But, instead of punishment let’s use this definition (found in Webster’s Dictionary): training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character.

And then when we are disciplining our child consider:

  1. How does the discipline affect our relationship? (What ties us together - being yelled at or being expected to clean up after ourselves - at a reasonable pace?)

  2. How does it impact my child’s authentic desire to be respectful and responsible? (Does nagging, reminding and obsessing over our kids homework allow them the space and time to figure it out on their own, or consider their own feelings about kinds of grades they want to get?)

  3. How does it affect my child’s emotional intelligence? (Do we want our child to learn that they only have to follow through when someone is angry and yelling at them?)

  4. How does it impact my child’s long-term development? (Is our demanding or rescuing giving them practice in self-discipline?)

When we approach discipline with an open, curious and kind mind and focus on training, correcting and molding toward moral character we use relationship building tools from our parenting tool box: listening, natural consequences and doing the un-expected. We put aside our habitual tools of yelling, reminding or nagging knowing that those do not bring us closer to our child, they do not teach our child to be responsible or respectful.

Hope to see you next week online!