from a self development perspective
The art of parenting is all about helping children discover who they
uniquely are so that they can blossom into fulfilling lives.
Parallel processes include helping them become responsible,
compassionate individuals who are able to have satisfying
relationships, bounce back from painful experiences (see Bouncing Back,
on depression and resilience), and take joy in living.
A self-development approach to parenting focuses not only on your child's
development, but also on your own development as a person and a
parent. Your capacity to help your children discover themselves is dependent on your own
ongoing personal growth. It is your own process of
self development that is the most powerful factor in
your ability to raise children who become self-actualized adults, able
to tap into their own potential [see learning to say "why not"].
sources of sustainable self esteem
In the ideal, parents consistently do these things for their children:
mirror. They reflect back, with delight, the positive
core and accomplishments of the child. They enjoy their children! To
them, each child is a walking celebration. They are charmed by their
an anchor. They provide a stable landing place when
their child is experiencing an emotional storm. This is how children
ultimately integrate the ability to modulate their own emotions. They
don't gain this ability from being ordered to calm down! Rather,
they develop a core belief from the experience of the calm strength of
the parent that whatever is happening can be handled.
empathy. They are innately attuned to their children's
emotional experience. They reflect back those emotions and do not deny,
correct or deflect them. This acceptance feeds a core sense of worth, a
sense of rightness and self acceptance. “How I feel is how I
feel. I am not fundamentally Wrong for how I feel.”
If you were lucky enough to be raised
by parents like these, all of this is innate. It seems to go
without saying. If you did not receive this, you may feel like
your self esteem is on a roller coaster. And if you're
experiencing that, your children may be, too.
in the way, and that's where coaching can help.
Your personal development and your own experiences as a child come into
play over and over again in parenting. For instance,
- You find yourself becoming angry
and embarrassed when your child is having a meltdown in the middle of a
restaurant. Her behavior feels like a reflection on you; in order
for you to feel like a good-enough parent, the tantrum must stop.
Yet this personal pressure can block your empathic understanding of
your child’s experience.
- You respond to your child’s plea
that you bring his forgotten homework to school, even though you’ve
been working with him on staying organized, because you want him to
feel loved and cared about – and you hate to see him upset by having a
- Your stomach ties into a knot of
misery when you see your book-loving eight-year-old alone on the
In each of these situations, as in
countless others, the feelings, assumptions and experiences that you
bring with you as a parent can complicate the process of responding in
ways that are most helpful to your children. Examining those
feelings, assumptions and experiences can free you to give your best to
you'd like to explore how coaching might work for you, please use our contact form or call 513.677.9800.
sessions can be scheduled at The Self Development Place
or can be held by phone, at your convenience.
fees and packages here.