Avoiding stress overload

Mischievous Little Girls

Managing those stress levels.  Learning to identify when your stress levels are rising as early as possible and then finding other ways of gaining relief from the frustration will all help you avoid reaching the point of overload that can result in yelling or being overly impatient and controlling. The person who grew up in Read More

Children need reassurances when their parent is grumpy


Children need lots of reassurances when their parent gets upset, or even just very stressed. When you’re annoyed at something your child has done, your child will feel those feelings from you and see it in your face and they generally need to know at least something about why you’re upset.  Mostly what they need Read More

Help your child to be skilled at solving problems


Promoting problem solving skills Instead of thinking of your child’s behaviour as wrong or naughty, it’s more constructive to think in terms of problems that need to be solved with a positive solution that meets some of the needs in another way.  Children need a lot of practice solving their daily problems all through childhood Read More

Dear Mum, we are committed to peaceful parenting


This is a letter that a client wrote to her mother in her endeavour to make it clear that she and her husband were committed to peaceful parenting and that her mother wasn’t going to get her to change her mind.  It was written with the hope that if she clearly explained her need to Read More

When not to reason with an upset child

Razor, USA

A mother whose been doing skype parent coaching and counselling with me for a while recently recounted the story of a big upset that their family had and gave me permission to share it.  This is a good example of how invalidating a child’s feelings tends to fuel the fire of their upset.  And also Read More

To make your child very angry, tell them to “calm down”


Children are so often told to “calm down”. Have you been told to calm down as a child or an adult? And if so, how has it felt to you? What effect has it had on you and what was the message you received? To become more calm is so often what’s needed when a Read More

The consequence of imposing consequences


First published in The Natural Parent Magazine (New Zealand and Australia) “Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent than the one derived from fear of punishment.”  ~  Gandhi When requests, limits and boundaries are asserted by a parent or teacher with the threat of enforced consequences, a culture of conflict Read More

When children seem hard to please


Often when my daughter is tired and I’m caring for her, it can feel like I’m just not getting it right for her.  Her needs are high and her tolerance is low. The hug is too tight or not tight enough, I spoke too loud or she called me and I didn’t hear her or Read More

The pitfalls of obedience training

obedience leads to wars

First published in The Natural Parent Magazine 2013. Who would want to train children to be obedient, when we can bring them up to be discerning, critical thinkers with a highly developed capacity for big picture thinking, for empathy for self and others and to value integrity and what feels right above the directions of Read More

Thank you for staying with me when I told you to go away

Girl Holding Butterfly

One day when my daughter was about eight, in expressing to me all the reasons why she really appreciates me, she said “because when I’m angry and I tell you to go away, you stay with me and keep looking after me”. I knew she was particularly referring to an experience we’d just had of Read More