Raising happy, healthy children — empowered, creative, resilient individuals who will blossom into the fullness of their capabilities — is one of the most important things we as parents will do in our lifetime.
We are the center of our children’s experience. If we model to them that they are worthy of our time and attention, that they are interesting and have valid opinions, thoughts, and feelings, if we show them how powerful, wonderful, and loved they are, they will develop these core beliefs about themselves.
But how do we put this knowledge into practice in a world with countless responsibilities, endless deadlines, and incessant demands for our time and attention?
START HERE: Know that you are your child’s right parent. You already possess everything needed to unlock your child’s greatest potential.
For example, if you’re a busy executive or entrepreneur pursuing your dream, you’re setting an excellent example for your children. View that as the absolute gift that it is! And understand that in releasing guilt — which serves no one! — and being kind to yourself, you’re also modeling the value of those behaviors to your children.
These are essential actions you can take to tap into your innate parenting genius and nurture your child’s connection to their greatness:
- Be dedicated to your own growth as well as your children’s.
- Live up to your standards before expecting anyone else to live up to them.
- Find the courage to heal your childhood wounds, so they do not filter through your parenting.
- Have clear boundaries — such as kindness, respect, integrity, and empathy — that are non-negotiable, and empower each child to discover their own brilliance within that framework organically.
- Model setting goals and working towards them, pursuing dreams, expressing creativity, and using your unique gifts and talent to improve the world.
- Also, model mistakes, discuss ‘failures,’ be vulnerable, take ownership and responsibility, and apologize when needed.
- Set your parent’s ego aside and be heart-centered and child-centered in every decision you make.
- Be flexible in your approach. I have five children, and they are each completely unique. Each one needs a slightly different version of me. My standards, values, and ethics do not change, but everything else is fluid to suit that child and their unique needs.
Also, create meaningful pockets of time for your children within each busy day
Next, it’s vital to understand that being an excellent, caring, and involved parent is possible even if you have an exceptionally active life. According to this study cited in the Washington Post, the quality of time spent with children is more important than the quantity of time. And I have found that to be true in both my home life as a mother of five and in my professional practice.
So I look for — or create — gorgeous pockets of time for my children within each busy day. It doesn’t have to be hours and hours. But it does have to be focused and mindful.
- I reframe some of my schedules and see if my kids can participate — are they going to help me cook the meal, are they going to help bake the cookies for tomorrow’s school party? If there are ways to incorporate them into what I’m already doing, I don’t have to make a separate task.
- Mealtimes and the clean-up after a meal can be an excellent time to allow the space for everyone to share and talk about their day. It can be a time of laughter or a serious time when we can step forward with support. And that’s where the real connection comes in and makes our entire family a more cohesive group.
- One-on-one “date nights” with kids are a great way to connect meaningfully. So even if we just sit and watch a movie together, we’re going to make popcorn and hot chocolate and snuggle together on the couch. That’s 90 minutes, but to them, it’s an important, fun, and memorable experience.
- Also, for us, Sunday is family day. So I very rarely work on a Sunday. We just hang out together, play board games, walk the dogs, or whatever it is. That’s my day of nothingness so that I can just be and get my inspiration and have joy and be in nature. I can incorporate my whole family into that. And that’s a gorgeous day that we have together. It’s also setting an example for them that our health, creativity, and equilibrium need to carve out time to step outside our busy schedules and hold space just to be.
We establish a sacred connection practice by holding space and listening intently to our children, whatever their age. This creates a lasting gift: the expectation of having a safe space to discuss the current events in their lives, hopes, dreams, and struggles.
Be brave enough to honor yourself in all things and courageous enough to live your truth. Our children do not listen to what we say; they watch what we do. If we focus on showing up as the most powerful, aligned versions of ourselves that we can possibly be in that moment, then we will inspire our children to do the same.
Tap into your own special genius as the catalyst for your child’s connection to their greatness. Join my waitlist to work 1:1 with me. Or, gain invaluable training, insight, and support through my transformational program, The Pillars of Leadership BLUEPRINT.
About the author
With over 20 years of experience transforming the lives of countless families in her practice as a Legacy Architect, Cathy Domoney is now bringing her expertise to the masses. A steadfast advocate for the child, her core philosophy is based on the delicate balance between being our children’s voice and holding them to a supremely high standard. She is paving the way for the next generation of parents who are raising resilient, inspirational, intelligent, and paradigm-shifting humans – the greatest future leaders of our time.
As the best-selling author of a kid’s book series, and a highly publicized thought leader seen on TED-Ed, Fox, NBC, CBS, BuzzFeed, and the Today show, Cathy is making waves as a new-generation parenting expert. Her 20+ years of experience in teaching, counseling, psychology, sociology, hypnotherapy, coaching, and raising her own five neurodivergent children has given her tremendous insight into parent-kid dynamics.
Through her parenting empire, Parenting Evolution, Cathy empowers and supports the parents of children destined for greatness, helping them unlock their children’s infinite potential so they can grow into the world-shaping leaders that humanity demands.