You will only accept your child to the extent that you accept yourself.
How can we raise humans to be independent and free spirited if we are not? Our children mirror us, they feed off our energy, our responses and how we show up in the world.
We must first accept that we are an individual being before we are a parent. Accept ALL your strengths and shortcomings. When we do this we teach our children how to do this themselves.
If we do not accept our children or ourselves for who we truly are then we will allow ourselves to dominate + control them. Or the opposite will happen; we will allow our children to dominate + control us.
The key is in order to build true connection with our children we need to dive inward and love ourselves fully. When we come from a centered place we can clear our minds and attune to our child in the present moment with curiosity and captivation.
Use the above affirmations to accept yourself and your child fully. Comment below if you have any to add!
The Rebel Soul Mama
What is Conscious Parenting?
This style of parenting, focuses on the healing + awareness journey of the parent. Our children are our greatest spiritual teachers. They live in the present moment and inspire us to do the same.
We must connect with ourselves so that we can connect to our children. If we are not connected to who we truly are how can we connect, teach or guide our children to be their true authentic selves?
Using this method you set aside superiority, our children are not our property or people we get to control. Take yourself off the pedestal of dominance. Many of us were raised in homes where our parents controlled us, we had to be obedient and do whatever they said. Even when we felt in our heart + being that what they were saying was not true for us or how we wanted to live our life. Along the way we got out of touch with our true essence to please and obey our parents. With conscious parenting we remove the control and opt for connection, giving room for our children to stay connected to themselves and follow their own life path.
In this practice you learn to observe and be aware of your ego, emotions, reactions and expectations. We must realize that our ego isn't us. It's a built up personality from all our perceived experiences and emotions. Many times we react to protect our ego. With conscious parenting we learn to pause, reflect and then respond to our children.
We are all always evolving and growing. I believe that parents and children will forever be teaching each other.
Have any questions? Comment below.
The Rebel Soul Mama
Conscious Parenting is ALL about connection over control. When I first had my son I had this undeniable feeling that he was his own special being. That it was not my job to mold him into the person that I want him to become but rather it was my job to create an environment where he felt comfortable being the truest expression of himself.
I personally grew up in alcoholic home and over the past few years I've learned a lot about generational trauma and pain cycles. After giving birth to Carter I really focused a lot of my attention on healing and breaking my own trauma cycle. Conscious parenting is away for me to look at my own emotions before just subconsciously responding to my child and most of the time I am able to consciously connect to what he needs.
There are 7 Key Principles to Conscious Parenting
1) Parenting is a Relationship
Children are their own unique people who can teach parents. Many of us learn very quickly that our children make us realize and gain new knowledge. They are more curious, present, imaginative and playful, which tends to push us to embrace this lost part of ourselves. I have so much fun playing super heroes or going to the moon with my son. Life is meant to be enjoyed and our children give us a huge lesson in learning to have some freaking FUN!
2) Let Go of The Ego
Parents release their own desires, wishes, and attachments to who their child is or isn't. Sorry but your child is NOT your redo to becoming the cheerleader, football player, lawyer, Doctor etc. that you yourself did not become. Guess what? They have their own interests, talents, purpose and desires. It's our job to help them on their life path not to push them into who we want or think they should become.
3) Focus on Yourself
Instead of forcing behaviors on the child, parents should focus on their own language, expectations and self-regulation. For example, I noticed I was using Don't and No a lot with my toddler, so guess what? He started mirroring back to me this behavior. I instead started asking him or communicating to him what I actually wanted him to do. He's a toddler so sometimes this still takes A LOT of patience or redirecting but this was such a good life lesson for me. Also, our children will do what we do, NOT what we tell them to do. So you can't eat like crap and ask your child to make healthy food decisions. You can't constantly critique yourself and body mama and expect your daughter to love hers. They are listening and watching us. We must model the behaviors that we desire them to inhabit in life.
4) Positive Reinforcement
Rather than reacting to issues with consequences, parents should establish boundaries ahead of time and use positive reinforcement. Has yelling or time out actually worked for you? Yeah didn't think so, I have found this usually flames the fire, especially with my toddler. They need to know their boundaries and get positive praise or a reward.
5) Look at the Process
When momentary problems arise (e.g., a temper tantrum), it's important to look at the process. What led up to this event and what does it mean in the overall view? For example, when my toddler is in tantrum mode I need to take a look at; is he hungry, did he nap, is he trying to communicate and can't? Many of us might subconsciously react with frustration, anger or agitation and this doesn't help your child it only confuses and makes them react even more.
6) Children Need to Learn Through Struggle
Parenting is not just about making a child happy. Children can grow and develop through struggles. A parent's ego and needs should not prevent the child from their growth! We are all so quick to help, fix or get involved in our children's challenges because we want our children to succeed (and we want to look good, don't lie). Instead we need to allow them to try and figure out the solution themselves. Even with my toddler I have him try a few times before I step in and help him a little.
Accepting our children requires being present and engaging in whatever situations present themselves. We can not plan or predict who our child will be. The power of parenting is in the present moment by meeting are child exactly where and who they are.
Hope this helps you mama! If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment. I'll also be opening up a group program soon called The Connection Cure. If you are interested in joining a group of mamas who want to learn more about conscious parenting then drop me an email at email@example.com.
The Rebel Soul Mama
"Postpartum won't happen to me" a conversation I had in my mind almost daily while pregnant with my son. I was the most peaceful and resilient I had ever been in my life, growing a human in my body gave me this superwoman mentality, and I expected it to continue on that way once I had him.
Although a doctor didn't officially diagnose me; for almost a year, I struggled with anxiety and looking back most likely mild depression.
Let's talk about WHAT REALLY happens when you become a MAMA!
What I've learned is:
YOUR IDENTITY SHIFTS, who am I now? Whoever you were before having the baby is tossed out the window. You get to rebuild and decide what kind of mom, friend, daughter and partner etc. that you want to be moving forward. Everything gets turned upside down because now there's this little human who's the center of your world. It's no longer ALL about you, and some significant adjustments happen along the way.
IT'S HARD! For many of us, we feel like we no longer fit in our old world, especially if a lot of your friends or co-workers don't have children yet. Holding conversations and NOT talking about your child 24/7 can be challenging. Also, the whole, NOT SLEEPING thing is HARD!
IT'S LONELY even if you have a great support system and a partner there's still this undeniable sense of loneliness that hangs over you, and it hits in waves in your motherhood journey. For me, it hit in the newborn phase, rarely seeing friends and not working. It struck again going back to work being the only new mom at a startup. Popping up sporadically and I was just too prideful to reach for the phone and connect with people in my life. I felt like I was the only one going through it and didn't want to bother anyone.
IT PUTS PRESSURE ON YOUR PARTNERSHIP, my partner and I have waded through some heavy stuff and some blissful occasions, but becoming a parent adds an extra dose of force on your life together. You and your partner have to figure out a new rhythm that works for you BOTH. You also have to make sure you are giving each other "me time", "friend time" and "together time". Yes, there is this precious new life in your life who needs lots of your attention, but you get to prioritize each other's needs as well.
IT'S MORE ABOUT HEALING OURSELVES than correcting your child. Our children are learning the world for the first time, so why are we getting so heated that they aren't listening to us? Because we haven't healed from our own childhood wounds of not being seen or heard. I've become so much more in tune with a lot of unmet needs from my childhood; I had to reparent myself to be a better mom for my son. I grew up in an alcoholic home, and so I decided the cycle ends with me. I can't blame my problems on my son or my parents. I had to take radical responsibility for myself and determined what kind of parent + human I wanted to be in this world. I chose to become conscious about my inner world, reactions and learn more about mindful parenting techniques so that I don't project my pain on my son.
POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION IS REAL and can happen to ANYONE. If you end up feeling depression or anxiety creepy in after birth, DO NOT be afraid to ask for help, to take steps to feel better, mama! I now know the signs, and I will never be too embarrassed or prideful to take the steps needed to get the help I need moving forward.
My biggest advice is to take motherhood in strides, expect things to change and not remain the same, move with the seasons, don't put pressure on yourself and ASK FOR HELP! We all need a community or a support system. If you need a fellow mama to chat with, I got you girl DM me. I'd love to support you.
The Rebel Soul Mama
Shannon McAlister | Educator, wifey and conscious mama who is practicing mindful living + appreciating the everyday magic!