Parenting News You Can Use! August 13, 2013

KIDS “R” THE FUTURE
Parenting News You Can Use!
August 13, 2013
Volume 7, Issue 28
E-Mail: docdebfry@earthlink.net
www.deborah-fry.com www.incaf.com

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IN THIS ISSUE:
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Welcome!
1. A Piece of Paradise
2. When Parents Shouldn’t Say ‘No’
3. Can You Pass the Awareness Test?
4. The High Price of Trying to Control Children

Welcome!
Do you ever get so focused on the challenges with your teen or your toddler or your job or your spouse that you no longer enjoy your family life? Do you ever have a mental vision of how your child ‘should’ behave and the reality of what is happening with your child couldn’t be farther from what you envision? In situations like this, not only is your happiness diminished but your creativity and flexibility in handling the challenges are, too!

This issue of Parenting News is all about moving beyond that picture in your head so that you appreciate what is happening now and so that regain your delight with your children, your inventiveness in handling problems, and your suppleness in your relationships.

Enjoy and read on!

1. A Piece of Paradise
We create pictures in our minds of how things ‘should’ be. What our homes should look like, what our job should be like, and what our family and children should act, look, and sound like. Those pictures can keep us from seeing the beauty right in front of us! Read Karen Maezen Miller’s excerpt from her upcoming book Paradise in Plain sight here, then feel free let go of the image in your head and see what is in plain sight!

2. When Parents Shouldn’t Say ‘No’
A recent Motherlode blog (“Confessions of a Mother Who Couldn’t Say No”) and its comment thread inspired Jaime Greenberg, Communications Director of Sunflower Creative Arts in Boca Raton, Florida, to explore her role as a parent, the lessons she hopes her children learn from her and the ugly misguidedness of parental guilt. Read more here.

3. Can You Pass the Awareness Test?
By Wes Hopper

Tony Schwartz said, “Awareness is insufficient if it doesn’t translate into better behavior in the world.” There’s a lot of people on the path of personal and spiritual growth, aren’t there? They’re reading spiritual material, studying with a guru, working on a better meditation practice. Hooray for them! That’s a good sign for the world. But as our quote points out, we can be missing the most important point.

How do we treat other people? Especially, how do we treat difficult, irritating and obnoxious people? Or people who are “unimportant” to us? With love, or something less spiritual?

Many people get on the spiritual path because they heard that it would make their life better. So they treat it as a set of tools to learn. Now if you take someone at a certain level of consciousness and give them a new set of tools, what they build with those tools will just reflect their current level of consciousness. We need to do better than that.

As Schwartz says in the quote, the way we measure our growth is in how we treat other people—in particular, the difficult, troublesome, obnoxious or needy people. The best example of this that I know comes from the Dalai Lama. When asked who had been his greatest teacher on his spiritual path, he answered, “Mao Zedong.”

Imagine that! The man who had chased him out of Tibet, killed millions of people across China and Tibet, kept him in exile—his greatest teacher.

Who are the difficult people in your life? What are they teaching you? Are you learning anything? Yes, I know you are.

4. The High Price of Trying to Control Children
Power is an intrinsic need we all have from day one! When it comes to adult-child relationships, power struggles are consistently at the top of the list. We all know that kids need limits and structure to grow into responsible adults, but there is also an equally strong need for autonomy, power, and control. So what is an adult to do? Parenting expert and Redirecting Children’s Behavior instructor, Tammy Cox talks about the importance of teaching children self-control, something they cannot learn if an adult is doing that for them. Listen to Tammy’s interview with Jane Bluestein here.

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