Mindful Parenting

Dani’s self-regulation tool kit (age 7)

My daughter created this kit for school based on the emotional regulation work we do together. It includes things to fidget with, look at, smell and even chew. She thought ahead, using the mindfulness skills we have practiced, to what she may need while adjusting to full time school again after last year. She has yet to use these items, but is glad to know they are there.

Kids having a quarrel and fightMindfulness is the art of paying attention in the present moment without judgment. There is a growing body of evidence supporting the physical and emotional benefits of mindfulness. These include greater presence: consciously choosing to be in this moment, rather than missing it as we focus on the future or the past. And greater acceptance: of circumstances beyond our control, and most importantly, of ourselves and our loved ones.

Parenting mindfully means parenting with conscious awareness, intentionality, and compassion. It is not a skill we can expect to master, but a set of tools we can use to engage fully and meaningfully with our children throughout our days together.

Mindful Parenting teaches how to:

two beautiful girls with a baby on the beach

  • Cultivate a secure, healthy attachment with your children
  • Integrate your own childhood experiences (including adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs) so they do not unconsciously influence your parenting
  • Notice the stories you tell yourself about your children, and recognize how your own thoughts and feelings may influence the content
  • Notice how your emotions such as fear or guilt influence your response to your children
  • Build effective communication skills with your children
  • Recognize and focus on your children’s strengths and talents
  • Recognize when you are stressed / distressed and learn tools for self soothing
  • Develop positive discipline techniques with your children
  • Recognize and regulate your anger
  • Recognize and honor the uniqueness of your child
  • Respond to your child and yourself with compassion
  • Reduce negative judgment of yourself as a parent