Practical Guidelines for Mindful Parents

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Buddhist author Karen Miller lays out a roadmap for mindful parenting in Shambala Sun. Here’s some of what she suggests:

Live by routine. Take the needless guesswork out of meals and bedtimes. Let everyone relax into the predictable flow of a healthy and secure life.

Turn off the engines. Discipline TV and computer usage and reduce artificial distraction, escapism, and stimulation. This begins with you.

Elevate the small. And overlook the large. Want to change the world? Forget the philosophical lessons. Instruct your child in how to brush his or her teeth, and then do it, together, twice a day.

Give more attention. And less of everything else. Devote one hour a day to giving undistracted attention to your children. Not in activities driven by your agenda, but according to their terms. Undivided attention is the most concrete expression of love you can give.

Be the last to know. Refrain from making judgments and foregone conclusions about your children. Watch their lives unfold, and be surprised. The show is marvelous, and yours is the best seat in the house.

Read the rest of Miller’s piece, The Monastery of Mom and Dad. Want more? Read her essay, also in the March 2009 issue of Shambala SunParents, Leave Your Home.

Source: Shambala Sun

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