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Saturday, June 17, 2006

Evolution of Conscious Parenting

When is the best time to begin parenting consciously? Before you get pregnant. The very best time to become aware of what type of parent you want to be is before you have kids. This will help you have a more relaxed and natural pregnancy.

Conscious parenting begins while pregnant, or before!

If you find yourself already pregnant, you’d be wise to avoid the mainstream books (such as the “What to Expect” series or any books that recommend you treat your baby with indifference, letting him “cry it out” or other cruel nonsense) designed to scare new parents and teach them parenting strategies that are detrimental to a child’s well being. Instead, read only inspiring childbirth and parenting books such as The Baby Book, Smart Love and Childbirth Without Fear (just to name a few) written by those who advocate parenting the way you want to.

Conscious parenting begins before your child is born, so learn all you can while waiting for your new arrival! While you are growing in your conscious evolution, you will likely be bombarded with baby advice (from your grandma to the stranger in the grocery store) that won’t seem right to you. I’ve found that the best way to deal with these well meaning people is to smile and thank them for their advice. Often, contradicting these people can lead to a debate, which if you’re not yet confident in your convictions, can lead to self doubt as they try to overpower you with their mainstream ideas.

What’s a parent to do with unsolicited advice and useless gifts?

For example, your mother in law buys you a 50 pound box of pacifiers for your new baby, and you don’t want your child to use them. Or you may receive gifts of babysitting devices like a swing, stroller, playpen, bouncy seat, or saucer, when you believe it will be better for your baby and easier for you if you simply wore your baby in a sling. Just thank them for their gifts, because they really do mean well, and continue to parent YOUR way. You can keep the gifts in the house if you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, and just not use them, return them for things you can actually use, or donate them to a shelter.

There are very few “things’ that new babies actually need. All of the baby gadgets and furniture are unnecessary, with the exception of a car seat. You can parent easily and peacefully with two things: Breasts and a sling.

You can begin parenting consciously if you already have kids.

If you already have children and are searching for a way to be a more harmonious family, start reading all you can on natural, attachment, holistic, spiritual, enlightened, compassionate, gentle, instinctive, and conscious parenting. The more you read, the more you will desire to learn and grow and live this type of parenting. The more you learn, the more you will evolve.

Bookmark this site and come back regularly. Search for other websites, forums or email groups you can join to find like minded parents to learn from and share with.

Pick an area in your family life you’d like to begin your conscious evolution with and start from there. You may choose to begin with making healthier eating choices for your family, or evaluating and refining your methods of discipline. Think of an area in your parenting life that simply isn’t working and find a different way of living that part of your life so that everyone benefits. We tend to struggle against new habits at first, but if you stay dedicated, you will reap amazing benefits from the end results.

Don’t stay attached to parenting methods that aren’t working for your family. If a million families are doing something a certain way, that doesn’t automatically make it the right way for your family. Forget about everyone else. Your family is unique. Base your decisions on what creates the most peace and joy for the individuals in your home.

Already parenting consciously?

There is no such thing as a perfect parent. This is good news, because even if you are already parenting consciously, there will be room for growth until the day you die. You will be a parent your whole life. That role does not end when your child leaves the home. And since no one is perfect, the growth potential is unlimited. Enjoy the growth of your parenting journey every day!


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