(1) Set a great
Parents who have raised their
children can tell you: Ultimately, children pay far closer attention to
what you do than what you say.
Set a great example.
- Want your child to grow
into an adult that sacrifices or sabotages personal or professional
fulfillment and satisfaction? Then go ahead and sacrifice and
- Want your child to grow up
and become addicted to bad habits or secretive behavior? Go ahead,
- Want your child to take
little heed of others needs? Be selfish.
- Want your child to ignore
courtesy, politeness, or hypocrisy. You know what to
- Want a child that "drops
out" of civic duty or responsibility? Then don't vote. Don't
- Want a child that pollutes?
- A child that is lazy? Don't
do. A child that believes the world owes them? Then whine, beg, complain
and make excuses for stealing from your place of employment.
- Want a child that grows to
find the best in personal and professional fulfillment and
A great example includes
keeping yourself and your children healthy. Follow the "Seven Simple
Steps for Health and Well Being." When your children are old enough,
give them a copy of these steps and share with them how these steps have
benefited you and them.
(2) Use the power of positive
Like it when someone tells you
that you can't or shouldn't do something? Neither does your child. Like
being scolded or criticized when you haven't done something perfectly?
Neither does your child. Prefer to be complimented on what you've done
well, then encouraged to do better on what needs improvement? So does
A study was conducted at the
University of Illinois on the positive vs. negative messages the average
2 year old received in the course of 24 hours. Negative messages included,but
were not limited to—"you can't, you mustn't, you shouldn't,
bad boy, bad girl," and just plain "no" without explanation why. Care
to guess the ratio? 672 negative messages to a single positive! No wonder
most people lead with the negative. Make an effort to change the status
quo. Lead with the positive. Then follow through with the positive.
The positive results will reward your efforts.
If you find yourself trying to
be positive, but just can't seem to break old negative patterns, or you
become angry and resistant at the thought of being positive—seek
counseling. A good counselor will help you determine whether therapy is
(3) Listen more and lecture
Children know when they’ve
"messed up". When they "mess up" discuss this with them, without rancor.
Pretend you are the most patient person you know. Then ask your child
"why?" When you get "I dunno" or a shrug—and you will meet plenty of
both in your parenting role—say, "Then tell me how it made you feel. Be
truthful. There’s no judgment about your feelings. Lots of things feel
good while you are doing it, but don't feel so good afterwards. So let’s
talk about what you felt before, during, and after. Start wherever you
want to." Then listen to their feelings.
Help them to evaluate their
feelings and their actions with the "long view" in mind. If they say, "I
didn't feel anything", say, "That’s cause for concern. It’s hard to feel
nothing. It means something is wrong inside. I think we’d better both go
for some counseling to find out what’s happening to you inwardly. We’ll
talk about what you did after the counseling." If that doesn't open them
up to discussing their feelings, Find counseling for your child, you,
and anyone else involved in raising the child. (This includes caretakers
if they are with your child a major part of the
(4) Help your child find
positive outlets for negative emotions.
All emotions have a positive
use, even so called "negative" ones. Anger defends body and soul. Fear
warns of danger. Frustration indicates a need for greater understanding.
Depression points to inner pain. Boredom cries out for meaningful
Teach your child how to find
positive outlets for their emotions. Small children and artistic older
children find great release in drawing or sculpting their angers, fears,
frustrations, and pain.
Don't censor anything your
child draws. If it is horrifying—maiming or killing someone or
something—say, "Oh, you must have been very upset. Let’s talk about what
upset you so." Then listen. Help them find a positive solution to the
As children get older,
encourage them to write about their emotions and stressful experiences.
(Recent studies show adult patients with mild to moderately severe
asthma or rheumatoid arthritis improved significantly after writing
about past stressful experiences for four months. (JAMA
1999;281:1304-1309) Don't ask to see what they’ve written, but
periodically ask if writing about their experiences is proving helpful
and if they’d like to share with you what they’ve written or how the
writing has helped them. If they say they aren't writing, ask how they
are relieving their frustrations, anger, and stress. Then listen. Help
them find positive ways for stress and anger release, then help them
imagine positive and beneficial solutions to stressful situations of the
past as a way of encouraging positive and resourceful thinking in future
After releasing the "negative"
emotions and finding a positive solution to what caused your child to
"act out", ask young children to point to and older children to talk
about the part of their bodies where they felt the most tension and
upset. Then place your hand gently on or just over that part and say,
"Let’s you and I put healing light and love there."
If your young child points to
a sexual organ, don't panic, but heighten your awareness. Ask if anyone
has touched them there in a way they didn't like. If they say yes,
listen. If they look away or down, or say no and look guilty or fearful,
say, "Sometimes people try to scare children by telling them lies. No
one is going to get hurt and you are not a bad person. Secrets that hurt
you should be told. You can tell me." If you hear something you don't
want to hear, be very careful how you react. First reassure your child
he or she is a good person and has done nothing wrong, but that the
person who did that should know better and you are going to see to it
your child is never alone with that person again. Then hug your child.
Then deal with the situation.
If sexual touching is with
another child, keep your cool. Children explore. If the other child has
been forceful with your child (won't stop when asked to stop) or is more
than a year older than your child, approach the other child’s
parents—but cautiously and without accusatory blame. If the parents are
unapproachable, keep your child from that child’s presence. If it has
happened with another child in a school or care-taking situation,
privately give a "heads-up" to the caretaker or teacher. Keep the lines
of communication open with your child.
If the sexual touching is
abuse or molest (there is a teenager or adult involved or your child has
been unable to stop the situation), get professional counseling for your
child and yourself. The counselor will know how to help you approach the
proper authorities who can see to it this person does not get to your
child or other children again.
Remember this—sexual abusers
have nearly always been abused themselves. Don't judge, but do report
and do insist on the abuser being segregated from children until a professional
therapist trained in working with child molesters determines this person
is no longer a danger to children
(5) Help your child honor the
Speak openly and with pride of
the people and the traditions you admire, as well as why you admire
them. Practice the traditions you hope your child will practice when not
with you. Don't force these—rebellion is sure to follow. Speak—without
lecturing—of how these traditions benefit you. Let your child see how
they benefit you.
(6) Teach your child to
respect other cultures and races.
In today’s world, your child
will interact daily with people of other cultures and races. If children
are not to grow up handicapped in the world in which they live, work and
play—avoid teaching prejudice. Teach your child respect for others and
the richness of his/her own culture and race.
(7) Give your child a
Children (and adults) who
believe there is a greater power within themselves they can call on to
help them in times of difficulty and celebrate with them in times of joy
fare better than those who do not.
Keep it simple with young
children. They understand the power of light to chase away darkness and
the scary thoughts and sounds that lurk within it. Tell them they have a
light inside themselves that never goes out and never goes away. Tell
them they can talk to this light and that, if they listen quietly, the
light will answer them. At the very least, you are helping your child
tune into his/her intuition. And what is intuition but a powerful inner
Speak to older children about
this Light also. Let them know it is their connection with the spiritual
deity or energies you trust and worship and share with them how you do
this. Teach them how to use this spiritual connection for inner strength
your child to pray and to meditate by praying and meditating with your
children until they are ready to do each on their own. Here is a simple
and powerful combination of prayer and meditation that is easy for both
you and your children to do, helps the Earth, helps your children and
you, and helps all of you to help others.
the eyes and take a deep breath. Imagine each of you are holding Earth
in your caring hands. Ask the Deity you worship for spiritual Light.
Imagine this Light as a beam of Light coming in through the top of your
heads. Now imagine this beam of Light is coming out through the spiritual
eye in the middle of the forehead to the Earth. (The middle of the forehead
is a spot that has been called the "spiritual eye" for thousands of
sending spiritual Light to the Earth it is best not to add any prayers
or words - silent or spoken. First, because The Creator of Earth knows
best what to do with this Light. Secondly, because meditation is a silencing
of the mind and this few seconds of silence trains the mind for longer
imagine the beam of Light coming back to you and your child. Now you
can direct the Light, if you choose, asking it to bring health and strength
in your bodies and happiness and good into your lives. (Picturing oneself
doing something joyful and the body healthy and strong is a good way
to add the power of visualization.)
imagine the beam of Light going to everyone and everything you want
to bless with spiritual Light. Family members, pets, friends, school,
the playground, teachers, the country, the car, toys - everything and
everyone your child wants to feel he or she is helping.
things happen everyday. If your child has not asked "why" he or she
will. Have an answer prepared for this. If you don't have an answer,
seek the guidance of your spiritual counselor. If you don't have a spiritual
counselor, pray and ask for guidance on this matter. Encouraging a child
- even young children - to ask the Light inside themselves for the answers
to their spiritual questions is always good.
Seven Simple Steps to Great Parenting
Seven Simple Steps to a Spiritual Odyssey
Simple Steps For Health & Well Being
Simple Steps To Connect Mind, Body, Spirit
Simple Steps For Discovering Your Past Lives
Online Press Kit: Odyssey of the Soul