What is Gentle Parenting? And how to use it to ensure a happy and healthy family life?
Even though the aim, to raise happy and also mentally healthy kids is the same, there are various parenting styles families are using.
I personally tried to focus on the needs of my baby from the very beginning and made all possible efforts to figure out what might be the real reason behind her let’s say “quite challenging” behavior… I am not willing to reveal my success rate 😅
According to an interview with Karen Estrella, MD of the Cleveland Clinic, “the goal of gentle parenting is to raise confident, independent and happy children through empathy, respect and understanding, and setting healthy boundaries.”
But how do you put this into practice?
You know… when you get to the edge of your ideas and patience, and the only thing left you can do is to look around and ask “Now what?” 😅🙈
Practical pieces of advice that come in handy in all imaginable situations
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I recently came across Lauren Barrett’s Parenting guide – actually entitled “Now What? – Mindful checklists for life’s hard parenting moments” 😉
I really wish from the bottom of my heart that I would already have this when my girl was a baby!
It would have saved me so much time by giving just the right hints for the various challenging behaviors!
I mean it is obviously great to go through the learning pass from the very beginning with your kid… and as each child and family is different, there is no “one size fits all” solution.
- knowing that you are not alone, and other families are facing the same struggles;
- getting some great hints well organized – with all the info needed, including videos, and some expert background articles for those who feel like digging deeper;
- having the freedom to choose what works best for your situation
is something really valuable that saves a lot of time and struggle for families!
Personally, I can relate to many of the suggestions (eg. positive reinforcement, which I already wrote our experiences about) and really value that we came to the same “solution” with my Little One in certain situations. Even some help could have come in handy on the way 😅
The Guide is organized around several Modules – eg. Module 1. “My Child Won’t Listen (Greenlight Behavior). Now What?” gives some general hints about issues that I would say most parents are facing.
Under each module, various “strategies” are described – with practical examples like dialogues of the imaginary situation as well!
The strategy of using a timer for example can be seen as a really obvious one. Well for us it took a “bit” of time to get there, and set a timer that “says” when eg. we need to start taking our shoes and leaving in the mornings. It is great, as I do not have to be the “bad guy” making my Daughter stop finishing the drawing and putting on her coat. It is my alarm that signals us it is time to leave. Such a simple thing as setting a timer before leaving makes our mornings a lot more relaxed!
The Guide shows you an “action plan” to each strategy, so you will exactly know how to test if this is something you should use in your daily parenting issues.
And what I like the most, is that you have the authority to decide if something is for your family, and your own situation, so worth building in your gentle parenting method toolkit. You are definitely not forced to use each and every strategy listed in the guide. You get some reflection questions to figure it out, and a checklist template to write those ideas for yourself that worked well for you!
So this method Lauren is using is gentle with the parents as well 😊
Modules 2 and 3 focus on more challenging behaviors – like whining or even kicking and biting, while the other modules go around problems that are pretty frequent in families with young kids: like not willing to go to bed or not eating.
You can use this Guide as a perfect list of strategies to turn to, whatever issues you are facing during your parenting journey!
It is like a best friend having a kid just a bit older than your one, who has already figured out many workable solutions in a positive and gentle parenting way and is happy to share her experiences with you!😊
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You can find more info about the Guide and initiate a purchase here: “Now What? – Mindful checklists for life’s hard parenting moments”
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