Mindful Solutions in Parenting
In my last parenting blog post I explored the importance of mindful parenting based on attunement, process and honouring. This blog will look at 5 of the many ways you might lose your mindfulness as a parent and mindful solutions to regain your mindfulness.
Speediness: There are so many demands and expectations on parents and families. When you rush around trying to get it all done it is very easy to lose your mindfulness. Mindful Solutions: Slow down, take non-essentials off the list, plan to leave earlier, prepare the night before. BREATHE
Technology intrusion: As technology is everywhere, it often intrudes on real connections, even when parents and children are in the same space. Mindful Solution: Many families now have a policy of putting aside technology during important family times by turning it off and tuning into each other and the activity in which they are engaged. BREATHE
Overwhelmed: This may be related to expectations, but it can also be due to parental isolation and lack of support. Mindful Solutions: Be more realistic about what can be done, schedule in fun and connection time, ask for help, connect with a friend or relative who can support you without judgment. BREATHE
Auto Pilot: How many times do you think, how did I get here? When you are on auto-pilot it is difficult to be attuned to your child. Mindful Solutions: Bring your attention to the present moment – what am I feeling/thinking/doing. Focus on what is right in front of you. If it is your child – what is getting in the way of him/her doing what you want? BREATHE
Distraction: In addition to our smartphones and tablets, there are many distractions in family life: TV, video games, isolating with a book or magazine and so on. The unintended message to children when parents are distracted is you don’t matter or I don’t care. When children are distracted parents have difficulty getting their attention and can feel disrespected. Mindful Solutions: Turn off the TV, video game or put down what you are reading and give your full attention to your child. If what you are doing is important, find a more appropriate time and place to capture your child’s attention. BREATHE
Check out my mindful parenting post suggesting further ways to be a more mindful parent.