Latest Articles from the Blog

The Gift of “No”

Posted by on Sep 29, 2014 in Practical Parenting | 0 comments

We all want our children to be happy, but is always saying “yes” the path to happiness?   “My mommy lets me have whatEVER I want!”   The really cool thing about boundaries is that a “no” to one thing is a “yes” to something else.   No, you can’t hit your sister when you are upset. (Yes, you can practice impulse control and learn more collaborative ways of getting your needs met.) No, you can’t watch a violent two-hour movie before bed. (Yes, you can have a good nights sleep with less stressful dreams.) No, you can’t have every toy you get excited about. (Yes, you can learn to appreciate and become more fulfilled by what you do have.)   Limits are not just a fact of life, but they are a growth-promoting element of our existence. Our brain literally wires up in a more integrated way through encountering boundaries and guidance. To be truly free and fulfill their potential, our children must learn to gracefully confront limits. Like the banks of the river, limits direct the flow of life force. Without the banks, water would just spill over and flood the plains, truncating the course it was meant to take down to the ocean. Our children’s life-force is like that; it needs direction to fulfill it’s purpose. Too much “no” squashes a child’s spirit, but too little “no” spoils the development of impulse control and adaptability necessary to fulfill our potential in life. Yes, of course it is great […] Read more…

FREE Call on Setting Limits

Posted by on Sep 29, 2014 in Practical Parenting | 0 comments

“Kindness is important to show respect for the child. And firmness is important to show respect for ourselves and the needs of the situation.” Jane Nelsen, Positive Discipline   Saying “no” to our children — setting limits and boundaries on their behavior — can be one of the most challenging parts of parenthood. Even when the limits are completely reasonable and healthy, we can find ourselves in the middle of a category 5 hurricane when we say “no.” So how do we set reasonable limits with our children and yet still remain respectful of their feelings and connected in relationship with them? This will be the topic of a dialogue between Patty Wipfler (Hand in Hand Parenting) and myself. Patty is one of my favorite parent educators and I am very excited to have her join us on this FREE live call October 27th at 6p.   JOIN US FOR THE CALL! Help us make this call as useful as possible. Tell us what questions or observations you have about the challenges of setting limits with your children. What do you want to hear us talk about? Leave a comment below, and mark your calendars for this special call. ———————————————————————————————————– Watch a short video of Patty Wipfler talking about the benefits of graceful limit setting here. Sign up for our FREE parenting eCourse here Read more…

Schooled by the Kids

Posted by on Jul 9, 2014 in Parenting Education | 1 comment

The other day, my boys gave me a real schooling.   Kai and Bodhi schooling their daddy   We were driving to the beach and some bicyclists were really hogging up the road. I got a little impatient with not being able to get by, and as I finally pulled around them I said something like, “Move your ass!” (apparently not under my breath like I thought.) All of a sudden from the back seat I hear my nearly six-year-old, Kai — “Dad, you shouldn’t really talk like that.” Ooops. “Yeah, you are right buddy. I kind of lost my cool, huh?” I replied. He continued, “You could say something like ‘excuse me…coming through’.” “Ohhh, that is a better way to do it,” I said, smiling broadly now. (Sooooo cute.) I thought it was over, but then little Bodhi chimed in. “ could say, ‘I ‘m on da side…dank you’.” A belly-laugh starts to shake my body, but I keep it as quiet as possible — trying to take this seriously and be respectful. “You could also say,…” and this went on for another minute or so —my little boys, ping-ponging back and forth, schooling me on manners and being respectful. Now this is awesome to me for several reasons. #1 It was just funny as hell! They literally each took about three turns each providing me with different ways I could communicate my feelings in a respectful way. They were so into it, and it was so damn cute. […] Read more…