It is never too late to change our behaviors, our beliefs, our thought patterns and our conditioning. Raising children is a never-ending job with lots of opportunities to do things differently.
Each moment is a new moment. As we parent, it is important that we create opportunity or space for ourselves to pause and look within. Parenting is not something that comes with a handbook for each unique child. We get our parenting “skills” from so many sources and experiences in our lives. One of the most powerful and influential sources is our own families and the way in which we were raised.
In my family, as well as my coaching practice, I spend time talking about values. When we raise children, what could be more important than taking the time to slow down and think about what you want this picture to look like? What values are important to you and how do you want them to be present in your family? For me, I strive to keep an open conversation with my children. This means that I come to situations with a non-judgmental attitude in order to foster an environment where my children will be open about their lives. If I am judgmental or make comments correcting them or telling them what they should do right away, the conversation usually shuts down. When I spend time reflecting on these kinds of conversations, this is my clue that I did not handle the situation in accordance with my values. My children’s behavior shows me that I may have done something that created their reaction.
These behaviors and values can change throughout our lives. We have so many opportunities to look at our children differently than our parents might have looked at us. Reflection is such a powerful tool that many of the previous generations of parents did not spend time doing because it wasn’t a part of their culture. It is never too late to make a difference in your family. What you create does not have to be what you always knew as a child. This is a new generation of children with a different set of challenges and successes. We need to raise children in a way that is not just from the way we were conditioned.
Many parents have shared their fears that it is too late. As a late bloomer to conscious and mindful parenting myself, I can tell you personally and professionally that it is never too late. Imagine the impact of any change in your behavior, on your children, and on yourself. When you become more aware, more conscious, and more connected to yourself, your children will benefit too no matter what their age. As the models in our families, our children are watching us. Imagine what they will notice as you tap into your parental values and shift your focus. When you make a change, that change has a ripple effect and goes far beyond its bounds of just you to others and will have astounding effects. What would this ripple effect of change look like for you and your family?