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March 12, 2013 / Gul Malani

Good Parenting

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Good parenting is rather simple! All we parents have to do is to set an example that the most valuable treasure we all have is our present moment, which is timeless and therefore eternity itself! We do not have to wait for the future to arrive as per our requirements before we start living our lives fully, playfully and cheerfully! Neither do we have to worry about our past which is dead and gone to live our lives fully! Being in the present moment also implies that the child does not have any stress which is very good for the child as the body will produce the right chemicals to keep it healthy!

Further, we parents have to be unconditional in our love for the child to ensures that the following qualities and capabilities in the child remain intact even when the child grows into an adult!

  • childlike innocence and curiosity
  • creativity and artistic abilities
  • fearlessness, unless it has to do with safety
  • being happy with its own self, being its own unique self  and doing it’s own thing
  • being involved and connected with Nature and our Universe

It is also very important that the parents help to develop the child’s Intellect for early decision making, so that the child has capability to live life on his own terms without Intellectual support from parents as soon as feasible!

Good parenting also means that we parents are aware that material and spiritual success is a combination of talent and luck, and luck is highly unpredictable. Therefore, we have to drop all our desires and expectations expecting peak performance and the very best results from our children all the time are truly unrealistic expectations! Performances and results will vary from time to time and the parents should willingly accept the variations!

Further, parents have to set aside their limitations, desires and expectations and help the child develop its own unique capabilities and talents based on the child’s interests and passions. Parents have to help the child fulfill its own desires and expectations, if at all!

Good Parents-

  • develop sensitivity to the sounds infants make to try and communicate with their mothers/fathers. If the parents are unable to understand the infant, then they seek expert help so that they can respond properly and quickly to make the infant comfortable and stable as soon as possible. *241017
  • listen, understand and respond (not react) to children every time, no matter how busy they are, how young or old the children are, or even when the children are throwing tantrums to get something!
  • are very sensitive to not say or do anything to hurt or damage the pyche of the child. Most of us parents are only sensitive to the physical hurt or damage to the body of the child and highly insensitive to damage we are inflicting constantly on the psyche of the child! Instead of criticising or correcting, evolved parenting is to use only honest and positive reinforcement every time the child builds a new inner strength. The power of honest praise is an amazing force in the strong and sustained development of our child.
  • do not think that our child has limited potential and capabilities. Very often our child can amaze us with what he/she can do and achieve,  much beyond our own conceptions, limitations  and capabilities!
  • do not want to protect our way of life and are willing to patiently and coolly listen to differing opinions or criticism from our children, no matter how young they are, so that that the children’s analytical, diagnostic and critical thinking develops early!
  • do not convey to the child that life is only about success, coming first, being powerful, being right, having good health, and being happy all the time. Child has to learn from parents attitudes and actions that it is perfectly alright to fail, be weak, wrong, sick or unhappy at times! Life is a like being on a Roller Coaster with its ups and downs!*

Good unconditional parenting leads to happy children with high self esteem, strong inner strengths and good skills to manage their life and achieve success too!

Excerpts from ‘Hold On to Your Kids’ by Gordon Neufeld, Ph.D., & Gabor Maté, M.D.

If we are to mature our kids successfully, or if we are to reorient them to us once they’ve been seduced by the peer culture, we must come to terms with attachment.

  • Senses Physical proximity is the goal of the first way of attaching
  • Sameness The second way of attaching is usually well in evidence by toddlerhood. The child seeks to be like those she feels closest to.
  • Belonging and Loyalty The third way of attaching also makes its debut in toddlerhood — if all is unfolding as it should. To be close to someone is to consider that person as one’s own….On the heels of belonging comes loyalty — being faithful and obedient to one’s chosen attachment figure.
  • Significance The fourth way of pursuing closeness and connection is to seek significance, which means that we feel we matter to somebody.
  • Feeling A fifth way of finding closeness is through feeling: warm feelings, loving feelings, affectionate feelings.
  • Being Known The sixth way of attaching is through being known. The first signs of this final way of attaching are usually observable by the time a child enters school. To feel close to someone is to be known by them.

The primary message of all types of (conditional) parenting is that children must earn a parent’s love. A steady diet of that, Rogers warned, and children might eventually need a therapist to provide the unconditional acceptance they didn’t get when it counted. – Carl Rogers, Psychologist

We don’t believe in holding on to the child too tight or leaving the child be. Parenting cannot be so rigid. It has to be a combination of both, a discerning involvement that is sensitive to the need of the child at that moment, and which recognises the fact that the child’s needs are changing constantly. – Dr. Atul Abhyankar

The essence of conscious parenting is that both mothers and fathers have important responsibilities for fostering healthy, intelligent, productive, and joy-filled children. – Bruce H. Lipton Ph.D.  140817

It takes three ingredients to make parenting work: a dependent being in need of being taken care of, an adult willing to assume responsibility, and a good working attachment from the child to the adult. The most critical of these is also the one most commonly overlooked and neglected: the child’s attachment to the adult…..Parenting is above all a relationship, not a skill to be acquired. Attachment is not a behaviour to be learned but a connection to be sought. – Gordon Neufeld, Ph.D., and Gabor Maté, M.D. in their book ‘Hold On to Your Kids’  051117

Young children as well as adults inherently expect unconditional love and understanding from their parents. Devoid of this, conflict starts, attachment to parents weakens, and then these children can get attached to their peers. Such children start to seek peer acceptance and  peer advice on how to conduct themselves and how to live life. This further enhances the parent-child conflict and distances the child from the parents making it nearly impossible to do good parenting. To reverse this situation for the benefit of all, parents should revert back to unconditional love and understanding in all their interactions with the child, be readily available to the child and be patient in allowing enough time for the child to reconnect to the parents. – The Totality  150118

Parents unknowingly build fear and anxiety in the child about what will happen in the next moment and in the future. They use this fear to motivate the child to study, learn and work hard in the present so that it has a better future. Whereas the reality is, what happens in the future or even in the next moment is neither in the control of the parents nor in control of the child. The next moments and the future are determined by the continuously changing Divine Forces at work in the present moment over which we have very little control. So, good parenting is to set an example that we, parents, fully accept the situations that happen in the present, next moment and the future, without any reaction and respond as best as we can to each situation as it arises. –The Totality * 140818

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2 Comments

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  1. kishor Jagirdar / Apr 12 2013 5:50 am

    Very apt observations and feelings which comes from the space of a high degree of unconditional flow of energy.Parents as described by the ancient wisdom was to emulate children in their child like innocence and preserve it as that part gave high degree of connecting to the universe any time without the tricks of the mind. Enabling children as only facilitators and not clamping down on kids with adult perceptions of right and wrong externally but allow it to seed within and enable children to choose from inner core what and how to live. The power of imagination becomes narrow with adult perceptions of reality and constricted where as a child is boundless in imagination.The ancient wisdom advocates creating space for children as free spirits and having high abilities of creative critical thinking.Today scenario is that we dont think critically but accept things are drawn in type cast and molds.Therefore we have become rigid in exploring and experimenting.Your work seems to be serving the universal truth and may it reach and impact all those who come in contact
    – kishor jagirdar .

    • Gul Malani / Apr 12 2013 9:46 am

      Appreciate the power and clarity in your comments! Yes, the connection with the infinite Universe should never be broken, ideally innocence should never be replaced by the Ego, which is separateness. Parents have to be like gardeners who water and help each plant bloom in its own way and time!

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