One of the best things I've been reading recently is Susan Gillis Chapman's book The Five Keys to Mindful Communication. She introduced me to the term toxic certainty--that kind of knowing that closes us off from each other, that is caught in a story about a situation or another person. Sometimes it's in us (maybe when we're telling a child, 'Of course you have to ____,'), sometimes it's in our kids (when they say something like 'Nobody wants to sit with me,' or 'I don't need any help'?). Certainly it's up in the political world right now.
So whether you're talking to your child or answering a challenging comment on Facebook, what do you think you know that you could explore more deeply?
What if we dedicate ourselves today, this weekend, to listening with curiosity? Some questions I've been asking myself about my inner experience, my talks with my teenage sons and husband, experiences with extended family, friends, students, the news, etc., include:
I'm a mom, wife, daughter, friend, and teacher who has long struggled with the desire to be the perfect person I imagine that I should be. Practicing mindfulness has changed my life, helping me to make peace with myself as I truly am and to appreciate my family, life, and the world as they actually are.