So often we approach our children assuming certain things about them based on what we “know” about them, instead of just experiencing them in the moment.  Many parents (yes, myself included!)  respond to our children based on what we think we know about them.  More often than not our assumptions are based on our own experiences and expectations (good or bad) which ultimately colours the way we view our children and their intentions.

How many times have you caught yourself telling your child to stop something you thought they were doing or going to do only to find out that they were intending something else.  Being the typical adult living in the future, too often we base our judgment on our prediction, best estimate or expectation of our children.  In doing this we loose the present moment.  We miss when they shift and change their response or their actions to situations, even if ever so slightly.   I have definitely been guilty of that .   For example, if I anticipate that my son is going to balk at something I ask him to do, I may ask it in a tone that reflects that I don’t believe he will do it or that I don’t think he will want to do it.  What a set up!   Of course usually in these cases I get what I expect- complaints, whining, resistance.

Being in the present is a lot easier said that done, especially in this time of technology.   Texting, and checking e-mails on our “smart” phones can make us stupid when it comes to being present and in the moment.  I have caught myself checking my e-mails as one of my sons approaches me with an important piece of information. I’m not talking “mom there is a fire”,  “I need help with my homework”  and those things that as adults we deem as more important.  I mean those often judged by adults as “frivolous”, like “look at what I made”, or “I cant find my favorite toy” or “look how I can jump over two cushions!”  Yes those important things. Important because that is what is happening in the moment, that is what is important to our children, that is what they want to share with us and it may not be six o’clock news worthy but it certainly is take a moment and pay attention with all of your presence worthy.

So I was thinking, a while back I scheduled in my phone calendar little reminders for myself to “Trust the process” “Let it go……Relax into it” as I was working on launching our web site.  They were put in as appointments and set so that I would receive pop up reminders of this “appointment”.  The result was having little automatic affirmations for my self programmed into the day.   That’s using technology to stay present.  As I was writing this I thought, hey why not put little reminders about being present with your children into your schedule- yes why not?  We schedule everything else.  In the in between times when we are not so “busy” the opportunity for being present gets lost because we are too busy catching our breath, rather than being with our breath and really being with our children, with our very essence.


If you want to try this with technology or even a paper planner here are some ideas.

1. Schedule in a reminder during the day, preferable when you know you will be busy and your children are around, to be present: it could be as simple as “I am fully present with my children“.

2. If you are in doors all day with your children, no mater what the weather, get outside with them and go for a walk in nature. Join them in discovering the surroundings.  This is different than a scavenger hunt where you know what you are looking for; allow nature to reveal itself to you and your children.  See what treasures your eyes see and your ears hear.

3. Play a game of I spy with your children.

4. Play the mirror game with your child: Sit facing your child and copy the expressions on his or her face.  You can do this with your whole body too, moving your arms and legs to match how your child moves his or hers as if looking in a mirror. Your child may like to take a turn copying you as well.  Have fun, let your child self-correct.










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