Shefali Tsabary's first book,The Conscious Parent: Transforming Ourselves, Empowering Our Children, is different than any parenting book I've read. It brings a very deep sense of spiritual purpose to both our experience of parenting and our child's experience of developing.
Shefali writes about parenting not as a struggle to control children and mold them into what we want them to be, or even as a beautiful service we do for our children, but as a path to healing and awakening for ourselves. This is important to me, because it can get me out of the self-righteous or martyr role that I fall into sometimes, and remind me that I am actually getting a lot out of this parenting journey. It's hard, definitely. I'm sometimes exhausted. If it was a job it could never pay enough. But it's a deep spiritual practice and learning experience that is changing me in important, essential ways. I am not just in this for my kids, I'm also in it for my own growth!
The second powerful message in the book focuses on how to support our children's emotional intelligence, creativity, and purpose. Throughout this book and all of her work, Shefali stays very clear about the innate dignity and purpose of every child and the importance of respecting it as we grow up with them. She offers lots of detailed and clear stories that help to bring awareness to typical parenting patterns and more conscious ways to handle situations.
I recommend that you get this book and read it! It will probably make you uncomfortable at times as you recognize things you have been doing unconsciously. It will also inspire you!
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 helps me find peace with my imperfect journey--being with myself as I truly am, loving my family as they are, and showing up for a messy world with openness and compassion.