I’m buzzing sharing this post with you. When I think of presence I get this- glowing – electric – tingling feeling. And after this post I know you will feel it too.
The word presence for me ignites: Engagement. Connection. Gratitude. Mindfulness.
Grab a cup of tea- a glass of wine -and dive into learning about what our children truly want and need from us: Parenting Through Presence.
I was thinking about parenting and where I have been called to service recently with my clients. I’m often asked “Tell me what to do” or “Give me the steps to change this behaviour. I’m desperate”.
When I think about these questions and the conversations to follow my heart blazes. It blazes because I believe that each parent already has the answer to their questions, frustrations and anxieties. They might not believe me initially- and that’s ok- but with a little soul searching, reflection and mindfulness they sure do. Again: they sure do.
And this totally applies to you too– whatever your concern is. However painful and aggrrevating your situation is. You too can cope in difficult moments with your child. You can let go of what you want things/ ourselves/ our children to be like- and pause, problem solve and move on- especially when you and/ or your children are not living up to your expectations.
This ‘letting go’ or – coming off the parent pedestal- allows our children to see you as a person- a person who also experiences happiness, love, sadness, anger and a person who makes mistakes. You let go of trying to raise ‘good mannered’ and ‘well behaved children’ who act from a place of fear, uncertainty and perfection. You start to talk about raising happy, healthy and authentic children who are emotionally resilient, true to themselves and willing to put themselves out there despite the outcome (because they know they will be ok no matter what happens: mistake, vulnerabilities, judgment)
When you parent through presence you are willing to:
+ Be conscious of your thoughts without judgment
+ Notice how both you and your child bring elements of positivity and negativity to the situation
+ Accept why you want what you want for your child and how this impacts on you as a parent
+ Connect with your child through a loving and supporting relationship
+ Be fully present with your child: To be in the moment. That very unique moment. Not a moment you desire, want to bring forth or hope will come.
Which brings me to write the Parenting Through Presence Series. I’m starting this series with a simple yet effective mindfulness practice: Count To 3. Count to 3 is one way to start honouring the parent free pedestal and saying ‘Hell Yes’ to parenting from a place of Acceptance, Compassion, Awareness and Mindfulness.
My clients have tried this before turning out the lights- at the dinner table – during bath time. But don’t let this stop you from discovering and seizing the perfect moment to ‘count to 3’ with your child.
When you count to 3 with your child you both list 3 things that you learned- enjoyed- loved- are grateful for about the day you just experienced- or in your life. You have the opportunity to model to your child that mistakes can turn into moments of positive learning, that fears can ignite courage and that by fostering love and joy you can stir an abundance of positivity in the world around you.
Examples from my clients:
Nicholas was “Glad he got a few spelling words wrong because it reminded him that sitting down to do his spelling homework with his mum makes a difference. Thank you mum!”
Lily was “Excited that she got a gold star for her handwriting because she has been trying so hard to get her pen license”
Jefferson told his mother he “Scored a goal in basketball at lunch time which made him feel so happy”
I’d love to know your thoughts about parenting from a place of acceptance, compassion, awareness and mindfulness. I look forward to sharing more insights into helping you get off the parenting pedestal and tuning into what drives you, motivates you and leads you to being the wonderful person and parent that you are.
Images via Instagram @mothermag