Parenting with Joy

Parenting with Joy

1. Relax. Your child wants you just as you are. Your full presence and authenticity are what they need from you.

2. Dedicate 15 minutes of undivided quality time to your child each day. Just be with your child; no expectation, no agenda, not needing to go anywhere or change anything. Watch them play, listen to them without saying anything, stop being a parent, just be you and let them be them.

3. They will remember who you are and what you do, not what you say.

4. Take care of yourself. If your needs are not met, you cannot be a happy and joyful parent.

5. Children feel you, they know you better than you know yourself. If something is unbalanced, look to yourself first. Bring yourself into balance instead of trying to correct something external, whether in your child or in the environment.

6. Step back, trust your child to discover, to learn on their own.

7. Be vulnerable. Be angry when you are angry, sad when you are sad and tired when you are tired. Children need to see adults express their emotions and resolve them. If you show only perfection, they won’t learn about authentic emotions and their transient nature.

8. When you make a mistake, tell your child you are sorry, explain to them that we are all imperfect and here to learn. There is no perfect parent and your child has no need for you to be perfect.

9. Tell them the truth. They can handle it. We don’t need to sugar-coat reality. Children are strong, they are smart, they are tapped in to their intuition more than we are and they can understand much more than we often think.

10. Each child has a deep sense of what is right for them, what their passion and calling is. Our role is to step aside and allow it to blossom. Praising takes a child’s accomplishment away from them and attaches it to you and your approval. They don’t do a “good job,” they do it because they are driven and their action fulfills them. Instead of "good job", you could ask them how they felt accomplishing what they did.

11. Never stop learning. Have a fulfilled, joyful, rich life and your children will forever remember that about you!

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