Dr. Shefali Tsabary-Conscious Parenting

As many of you already know, India holds a special place in my heart as do many of my friends who are from there.  The spiritual connection we all share is something I cannot describe but can definitely feel.

I recently came across a TED Talk by Dr. Shefali Tsabary, Ph.D. clinical psychologist, and author of the book “Conscious Parenting.”   Her Indian background compliments her style of work where Eastern spirituality and mindfulness meets Western world psychology, creating one of the most transformative ways of thinking while raising children.

Whether you are a parent or a non-parent, Dr. Tsabary’s insight is remarkable because all relationships are intimate connections and relationships with our children are the most intimate of all because they are a part of us.  As children grow and learn, we relive our own childhood and this includes the challenging times they experience which can trigger the challenging times we experienced as children with our own parents.  The same is true with love relationships, new situations can trigger old wounds which continue to revisit us until they are dealt with.

We all carry around something called our emotional shadow which is our emotional baggage of unacknowledged pain and our own ego.  Whether you are a parent or not, we all have it and carry it.  Maybe your emotional shadow is made up of pain, neglect, abandonment or dishonesty.

As a parent, we can’t expect our children to embrace painful feelings if we haven’t taken the opportunity to do that with ourselves.  They need to experience pain in order to grow because it’s where we learn the most from life.  Hiding, covering up or avoiding pain only adds to the emotional baggage and when you become a parent, our children will do something that triggers that old wound, and instead of reacting in an outburst, we need to look within ourselves and ask why we are reacting a certain way so we can awaken ourselves and start being better parents.  We need to explore our emotional shadow to face the unprocessed emotional pain and tune into our own essence, therefore, tuning into the essence of our children.  This is how we face our own ego and become better parents.

As you help your child, you are helping yourself and as you look within yourself to ask your inner child what this is trying to tell you, you are helping your children.  Children are our teachers and this is why it’s so important to put yourself first so you can be the best possible parent for your children.  It is the most transformative swing of the pendulum because you are changing your perspective from ego to wisdom and both sides are winning.

Dr. Tsabary also talks about how we always have choices in life and we can look at life situations in two different ways.  One, life is happening to us or secondly, life is happening for us.

In the first example, life is happening to us, essentially means, you vs me.  It is a separation from our spirits, a victim of life perspective.  People become passive aggressive and find addictions as an escape route.  Perhaps it’s someone who lost their job or a failed relationship.  People see themselves as chronic victims and find an addiction such as drugs or food and they lose their spirit and connections in the world.  It’s the easy way out.

In the second example, life is happening for us.  People rarely take this approach, but it is always a choice that exists.  Life disguises itself in painful ways such as trauma, shock, darkness, yet even in these times, we can look at this pain as an awakening and we can ask ourselves “What does this experience mean to me and how do I need to grow?”  Life mirrors back to us the ways we have yet to develop.  We miss these signs, calls, and invitations because we look at it as if life is happening to us.  Every difficult relationship is a calling because it’s asking us to wake up.  Ask yourself, “What in my emotional shadow has been triggered so I can reach my authentic self?”

Dr. Tsabary developed an acronym as a reminder when owning your own emotional baggage, which is ACT.

A-Aware of yourself.  Aware of your anxiety, energy, words and beliefs.  See things as is, as they really are.  What is really going on?

C-Consciousness.  Noticing the cause and effect.  Where do our cause and effect occur?

T-Transformation.  There are 3 ways to transform.  One, embrace the situation, take it for what it is.  Two, stop being a victim, change it, go to therapy, and start healing.  Three, leave it.

When people see the work and effort that is required to own their emotional baggage, they take the first approach where life is happening to us and therefore, no ownership is taken because it means giving up too much.

Every moment is alive with meaning and purpose, and we can lead joyous and peaceful lives for ourselves and for our children.

We just need to awaken into conscious parenting.

 

Much Love ❤

Jen

 

 

 

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Waking Up Without Ever Having Gone To Sleep

authenticitypledgetreeweb

Self-help and personal growth and development are one of the most popular genres of books, music, videos, and movies these days and people are searching for inspiration in everything because they live with a feeling that something is missing in their life.  I know I’ve had my fair share of days where I don’t feel aligned with who I really am and there was a time when I wasn’t living my most authentic life either.  When you suppress the real you and live for somebody else, essentially it is a betrayal of yourself and that really hurts.

We often hear the phrase “live an authentic life.”  What does that really mean?  How do you know you are living an authentic life and how do you know if you’re not?  The best place to start is by defining your core values.  What makes you who you are?  If you were to describe yourself in 10 words, what would they be?  These are your values, they come from your heart and they drive your behavior.  On the other hand, a belief is something with the word “because” in it, such as “I believe ____ because _______ .”  These are not who you truly are because they are usually imposed on you from somebody else like a parent, teacher, or society which can end up being self-limiting and disempowering.  Values are never self-limiting, they expand and empower you.

For example, let’s say you value creativity because you are into music, writing, painting or whatever the case may be.  You might be a high profile professional and feel like something is missing in your life and you’re right, there is.  It’s your authentic self that’s being suppressed because the outside world might be screaming “don’t do that, it’s a waste of time, put your efforts into your work/family instead.”  It might even be your gremlin inside your own mind saying “who do you think you are, pursuing something like this?”

Sound familiar?  Yep.  Been there done that.

To live an authentic life we need to learn more about ourselves by spending time alone and asking some tough questions that we need to know the answer to.  If we don’t ask, we’ll never know, right?  Living authentically is in constant motion which means it’s always shifting and evolving so you can find what’s real and then have the courage to live that way, despite all the judgments and criticism.  Every time you look within yourself, a little more authenticity is revealed and your challenge is to find your power in a disempowering environment.  Nobody said it would be easy but what’s even harder is ignoring your authentic self for the rest of your life.  We need to let go of the fears of what other people might think of us if we decide to show our authenticity and instead we can choose to love ourselves unconditionally.

Fear always feels bad, insists on certainty and needs everything whereas love always feels good, accepts uncertainty and needs nothing.  The more we can live with an open mind and open heart on a daily basis, the more authentic our lives will be.

The beauty of living authentically is the waking up without ever having gone to sleep.

 

Much Love ❤

Jen
xo