You probably had a lot of reading and listening to stories about other parents before your baby was born.

You may have felt confident in your parenting choices for your not-yet-a-challenge-because-they-weren’t-born-yet baby.

Your baby was born, quickly grew into a person, and suddenly you felt completely unprepared.

You may feel pressured to make difficult parenting decisions. This could lead you to look for support groups from other parents.

You may have heard about conscious parenting through these groups. But what is conscious parenting? Is it really possible to do this?

What’s conscious parenting?

Psychologists and others use the term conscious parenting to refer to a type of parenting that focuses on the parent and how mindfulness may drive parenting decisions.

It is rooted in a mixture of Eastern-style philosophy with Western-style psychology. It is a combination of meditation and self-reflection.

Conscious parenting is simply asking parents to stop trying to fix their child. Instead, they should look inwardly at themselves. Conscious parenting sees children as independent beings, though they are still learning over time. Parents can learn from conscious parenting to be more self-aware.

Shefali is a New York-based clinical psychologist and author. undefined

Shefali suggests that parents should seriously consider cultural legacies, or to be more precise, family baggage and personal conditioning. This will allow them to begin to let go their own checklists of how they want to live.

Shefali believes that parents can no longer force beliefs onto their children by releasing these checklists. Children can then discover their true identity when this happens. Shefali believes that this will allow children to connect with their parents because they are being accepted for who and what they are.

Conscious parenting advocates believe that this prevents children from developing an identity crisis later in their lives. It creates close bonds with children. They believe that it is responsible for the high number of children who withdraw from their parents due to the authoritative style and conditioning they receive.

The key elements of conscious parenting

There are many aspects to conscious parenting. Here are some key ideas:

  • Parenting is a partnership. Parenting is a relationship. Parents can learn from their children.
  • Conscious parenting means letting go of the parent’s egos, desires, attachments.
  • Parents should not force children to behave, but rather focus on their language, expectations, and self-regulation.
  • Parents should not react to problems with consequences. Instead, they should set boundaries and encourage positive reinforcement.
  • It’s not enough to try to solve a temporary problem, such as a temper tantrum. It is important to look at the whole process. What was the cause of this event? And what does it all mean in the larger context?
  • Parenting is more than making your child happy. Children can learn and grow through difficulties. The ego and needs of a parent should not stop a child from growing!
  • Acceptance is about being present in all situations.

What are the benefits to conscious parenting?

Parents must practice conscious parenting by engaging in daily self-reflection. This could be more than beneficial for your parenting.

Regular mindfulness-based self-reflection can lead to benefits Trusted source such as a reduction in stress and anxiety. Daily meditation can increase attention span and reduce age-related memory loss. It can also improve sleep quality and blood pressure.

Its supporters also believe that conscious parenting can promote more respectful language use by both parents and kids, as well as increased communication.

Conscious parenting is based on the belief that children are whole individuals with something to offer adults. To truly accept this belief, parents must communicate with their children often and treat them with respect.

Children can learn healthy, positive relationships from adults by having regular respectful conversations.

A 2019 study also found that engaging young children in high-quality and quantity language early on has many benefits. Research shows children who engage in conscious parenting may have better cognition and less aggression.

What are some of the drawbacks to conscious parenting?

Conscious parenting is not the best choice for parents who want to quickly and easily solve their parenting problems.

It can be difficult to practice the self-reflection required to lead a conscious parenting style. Conscious parenting advocates believe that it is necessary to let go of your baggage in order to allow your child be their true self. This won’t happen overnight.

Conscious parenting means that parents allow their children to fail and struggle. It may take some time and be messy.

Conscious parenting advocates believe that a child must struggle with difficult issues in order to learn. It may be hard for parents to watch their child fail or experience pain.

Third, conscious parenting is not for those parents who prefer black-and-white solutions to problems with their children. Conscious parenting doesn’t advocate a “if A, then that” approach to parenting.

This type of parenting requires parents to give up significant control over their children. Things may become more unpredictable and fuzzier when there is less dictation.

Conscious parenting emphasizes that parents should not always have a plan of action. Instead, they should work with their children to solve problems as they arise.

Conscious parenting can present unique challenges for parents of younger children. Sometimes, parents need to act immediately in order to ensure safety. When your primary responsibility is to keep your child safe, it’s not always easy to stop and think.

For some parents, the core beliefs behind conscious parenting can be too much. One example of this is the controversial line in “The Conscious Parent,” which states that “Parenting doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated once we become conscious” because a conscious person is naturally loving, authentic, and it is likely that many parents feel that parenting can sometimes be quite difficult and complicated.

There may be times when another parenting philosophy is more appropriate. Depending on the parenting view and personalities of the individuals involved, conscious parenting might not work for all children or situations.

Parents tend to use a variety of parenting strategies when raising their children. They base their actions on a complex mix of factors.

 

Examples conscious parenting

Are you unsure what this could look like in reality? You’re not the only one. Here’s an example of conscious parenting in action.

Imagine your 5-year old has gotten the scissors and been left alone. This is every parent’s nightmare! They decided to go to a barbershop and try their new skills at cutting hair. The result is obvious as soon as you walk in.

1. Breathe

Instead of reacting with rage, horror, or putting the blame on the child or their parents, you can practice conscious parenting by taking a moment to breathe and centering yourself. Move the scissors to a safer place.

2. Reflect

Before you express your feelings towards your child, it is important to reflect on the emotions and triggers that this event might have caused. There’s a good chance that you are thinking about what other parents will think of your child when they see you next. It’s time to let it go.

3. Set boundaries

Setting boundaries is part of conscious parenting, especially when it comes down to respectful communication. If your child asks for scissors and is told it can only be used by a parent, that would be an opportunity to discuss the violation of the boundary.

You must also consider what you can do to help your child in the future, such as moving scissors to a place they can’t reach on their own. Remember that conscious parenting is about connection and genuine relationships. It’s not just about cutting hair.

4. Accept

Conscious parenting suggests that you let your child’s hair be what it is. There’s no need to regret the past hairstyles. You can now practice letting go of your ego.

This could be a chance to work with your child on a new hairstyle, if they so desire.

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