Conscious Parenting in 7 Words
You have to get through a lot while raising a child 'til you get a clear sense of what your little angel ought to eat, when he (or she) should go to sleep, how to change a messy nappy, what to do when he's ill or in a bad mood, which toys to buy or which school to choose, etc... But to raise a child is not the same as to educate him, so after you have got all that, the fun is just starting! We can be certain of one thing: we cannot tutor our children if we do not educate ourselves constantly, because the copy we'll probably get will be too exact for our taste. Children learn by mirroring and if we master the use of that it becomes the biggest advantage in parenting. Another thing to understand and keep as clear as possible in our minds is that deep and mutual connection between us and our offspring isn't predetermined. A relationship with a child is bond which has to be built, developed and nurtured during life.
It all starts with respect. Even the smallest form of life deserves respect, but your flesh and blood is worth respect as an individual person. It will help him to obtain his own space, personality and confidence. So let's regard our children for what they truly are (free spirits) not for what they say or do.
Acknowledge your child as a new and yet unknown person. Now, isn't it so fabulously interesting - to get to know a being whom you already love so dearly? And let's be fair - allow our children to get to know us, too, the way we really are. Permit a natural unfolding of a character and growth, let their childish creativity test and shape their own world and if you are sincerely open at the same time you'll start noticing your personal perspectives rejuvenating.
If we could give only one thing to our children - let it be love, because all the rest they'll somehow manage without us, for there is no such thing as a surplus quantity of love. Sure, that's obvious and you doubtless already love all your descendants, but you could also admit that the love you're feeling isn't always in its pure, constant and incessant form. And how about the surrounding relationships and situations - are they full of your love likewise? Only a strong and vibrating field of love around a child would indicate a safe and supportive space for growth.
And what does it mean to grow? It's the same thing as to change. Life itself is an eternal movement and if we want to stay alive we have to dance with it. Teach your child to do that, but do not take the gift of passage from it. Let's bravely set forward our precious ones to experience their own challenges, stay close and supportive if needed, but allow them to build their honour from attained sense of personal achievement and development.
There isn't an impossible dream, they do come true in ways we sometimes couldn't even imagine, so if as adults we sometimes feel limited and even restricted, it's best to try not to project that perspective on to our younglings. Instead of that we can propose a subtle touch of sacredness which could encourage their dreams to become grand and celestial by giving our children an opportunity to taste spiritual experiences at a young age.
Foremost, let's learn to take responsibility for ourselves - if something happens it's not the child's fault, because we are responsible for him. Secondly, we ought to remember that there's no point trying to change the past, only the future, or being more exact - only the present matters. Penalties do not educate, they cripple and force us to feel guilt. Therefore there's no meaning in a punishment, cruel or sophisticated, physical, mental, emotional or any other kind. We ought to let the child know clearly that/why we are hurt or angry, or disappointed and that itself will raise sensitivity, empathy and soon enough - remorse in a small heart.
Finally, what's left is to simply trust. To trust life and your child. Everything is going to be fine, one way or another. Children become wonderful adults even if their parents think they've somehow wronged them. The last gift we could grant our future generations as a vaccine for all life's mischief would be cloudless optimism.
I'm a mother of two little children - Gabrielis and Alija and they are my main involvement at the moment beside other secondary activities. Probably it's worth mentioning that I take part in Mothers' Circle of Conscious Parenting and Attachment Parenting Centre in Lithuania while being a certified 7 words practitioner, too. Foundation of my philosophy is definitely the 7 Words system, but I also find a lot of identification with the Steiner Waldorf education system. When combined, these two create a long but profound and explicit path towards building relationship with children.
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