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Parenthood is a delightful journey. It contains the greatest and most terrifying elements of life.

We hear the following words of Jesus in John 15: “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you” and “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you”.

I subscribe to a blog called Farnam Street. It is run by a Canadian former intelligence officer, Shane Parrish. He seeks to collect tried and tested ideas that lead to meaningful understanding. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it frequently contains insights that provoke me to think more deeply about the world and the way I approach work and life.

In a recent podcast called Peaceful Parenting, he talked with parenting writer, Dr Laura Markham. Parrish summarised the 90 minute podcast in the following points:

  • We’re all learning and growing.
  • Our ability to self-regulate is likely to have the biggest impact on who our children become.
  • We’re not going to be perfect, but if we lead from the heart, with compassion, we can support our children to be their best self.
  • How we relate to our kids and how we make the decisions of daily life shapes our children in way that can’t put into words. Those ways will, however, show up in who they are, how they live and how they think of themselves.
  • One of the most important gifts we can give our children is the sense of being valued, being delighted in for who they are. Our love for them doesn’t depend on how they behave.
  • Our love for children should be unconditional. And the paradox is that when we love our kids unconditionally, it helps them to grow into the type of people who are lovely.
  • A significant number of us were not brought up to befriend our emotions. Emotions are an indicator of something deeper, something more significant that needs our conscious attention.
  • Parental resolution of quibbles is helpful as it models to children how to resolve differences or grievances.
  • Children will develop resilience as we let them have negative feelings, and develop the understanding that the world doesn’t end.
  • As parents we need to regulate our own emotions, connect with our kids, coach them, but have consequences.
  • Parenting is not a set of regulations, it is a relationship.
  • Remember, kids have an unfinished (developing, growing) brain that develops in interactions with their parents.

We appreciate the privilege that you give to us at NBCS, as we work in partnership with you and your children, in their learning, development and growth.

Tim Watson