Consistency over Constancy
Being a good parent isn’t about being all-available, it’s about being consistently there for your child over time.
You have the power to be the parent you want to be. Learn how to be attuned to your child’s needs while maintaining your own so you can develop trust in your bond over time.
Rupture & Repair
Throughout the day, we face many mismatches between parent and child when it comes to needs, wants, and desires. But these moments can be used as opportunities to create a safe and secure relationship where the child can trust that s/he is seen, heard, and held, and that you, the parent, will always be there carrying their mind in yours.
Understanding the relationship between rupture and repair can ultimately lead to improved capacity for emotional regulation, frustration, tolerance, and most importantly, resilience in understanding that you and I (or we, together) can move through hard things. In learning about the impermanence of feeling, we can move from negative to positive emotions and experiences and learn that we are not alone.
Two to Tango
So many parents deal with guilt when it comes to parenting. But understanding that the parent-child relationship is about both of you is a healthy first step toward achieving a harmonious unit.
A healthy relationship is one where both parties take delight as well as feel seen and heard; it is the balance of me, you, and us that makes space for harmony in your relationship.
The 4 Rs
Dr Cotler’s foundational theory on Mindful Parenting is based on her 4 Relationship Rs approach. Moving from self-exploration to self-awareness into the everyday experience of a parent-child relationship shows how important both the parent and the child are in a secure attachment. It’s a non-linear process that moves through guided reflection, narrative recognition, and a series of rupture & repair.
Reflection is a process whereby you learn to name your body sensations, thoughts in your head (from today and past), and feeling states (naming practices), so you can better identify what you need in any moment. By breaking down our experiences and reactions to them into a step-by-step reflective process, we learn to move through our world with mindfulness and self-compassion.
Recognition is the process of integrating Reflection practices into your role as parent. By noticing the child in front of you, their body sensations, thoughts in their mind, and feeling states, you facilitate co-regulation. By going through these steps with your child, you create a mindful space filled with compassion.
Rupture & Repair
Through a series of ruptures and repairs, the child learns that s/he can build trust in the parent. The child learns that the parents see them and continues to love them unconditionally even if boundaries are being set. These mismatches give rise to opportunity for the parent to help put words to the child’s emotional state while also showing that they will consistently be there no matter what.