So, what's it about?Tuesday, June 14, 2011
The Self-Aware Parent
I've been hearing this a lot lately…people are kindly asking me what my new book is about.
But honestly, I struggle with summing it up with a simple explanation or definitive answer.
I can say that it's a parenting book and a personal growth book, and my intended message is contemplation and inspiration.
Ultimately it offers a perspective, a way to view parenting and life in a more clear and pleasurable way; to get off autopilot and move through life feeling self-aware and connected.
And because I am constantly learning, I share experiences; stories about what my children have taught me, stories about self acceptance, stories about dealing with fear, and stories about finding peace and contentment.
I share these stories to remind us of what we all already know; to help us separate, even if it's just momentarily, from the hustle bustle of life so we can remember what is truly important, so we can realize joy and embrace what truly matters in this life.
And although the players and experiences are different in every chapter (each chapter is very short by the way....it's an easy read for a busy parent), these are some of the lessons that pop up over and over again……
- It's OK to be vulnerable - express your feelings, be honest, admit to mistakes, love people and forgive those who hurt you. This in itself will change your life and allow you to let go of so much that isn't real. Vulnerability is true bravery.
- Know yourself, love yourself - your responsibility in this lifetime is to take care of YOU, body and soul - then you can take care of others. If you do not take care of you, then you will always be limited in what you have to offer.
- Surrender is different than giving up - giving up is when you cut yourself off from the answer. Surrender is when you open yourself up to answers beyond your thinking mind. As Einstein said, "you can't solve a problem with the same mind that created it." There is something far greater out there - let go and trust it.
- Find humor - life does not need to be so serious. Even things that feel serious do not need to be so serious. Laughter is a release, it allows new perspective, and it's a decision to feel joy. It's therapeutic, relaxing, and loving. It's the number one reason I married my husband - we can laugh through anything.
- Accept the paradox of life - you need to spend time with your partner and children, you need to spend time alone. Life is beautiful, life is challenging. Love makes a heart grow, love can break a heart. This is life.
- Know you are enough - we waste so much time devaluing ourselves and we unintentionally pass this along to our children….realize your worth so your children can realize theirs.
- Breathe - breath is life and it's also a tool to help navigate through challenges, negative thoughts, and powerful emotions. It can happen without our attention, but when we give it our attention, we reconnect to ourselves.
I could go on, but I have a thing with the number 7, so I'll stop there….
Just know that there is so much wisdom out there and so much wisdom in us; becoming a parent is our wake-up call to access this wisdom. It's an opportunity to take responsibility for our lives, to realize what is/isn't working and discover new ways to live authentically.
To be great parents we need to start with ourselves. We need to become self-loving and self-aware people so we can pass this on to our children. Children do not learn by words, they learn by watching us live, so it is our responsibility to find joy so we can share it.
And isn't that a relief? That we are supposed to find joy? That it's OK to be happy? That life is not supposed to be about suffering?
So if you want to help me out and formulate a sentence or sound bite to sum this all up, I would greatly appreciate your effort…..
My new book The Self-Aware Parent Two: 23 More Lessons for Growing with Your Children is available on my website or Amazon….it's a continuation of my first book The Self-Aware Parent: 19 Lessons for Growing with Your Children….you can buy them separately or together (only $20 for both) on my website.