Let’s face it, we moms barely have time to pursue any interests outside the core family functions and the luxury of reading a book cover to cover might be a thing of the past. That’s why audiobook apps like Audible are so good.
Here are my Top 2 recommendations for parenting books you’ll want to listen to. You can listen in bed, while you fold the laundry or pump/feed; wherever you can! Just pop your earphones in and listen as the pages unfold. Recommended read: The Explosive Child: A New Approach for Understanding and Parenting Easily Frustrated, Chronically Inflexible Children by Dr. Ross W. Greene. Every mom, no matter how old her child, should listen to this on Audible. It’s 2.5 hours and can be listened to in sections if you need it. The best part about listening to it is the vignettes you hear of parents talking to their children. They are so relatable and easy to replicate. Don’t be thrown by the title of this audiobook. It’s relatable to every parent for the parenting strategies alone. But mostly for an understanding that no two children come with the same set of challenges, needs, or personalities. The same theory applies to parenting styles. If you need help with your challenging child like yesterday, this local center dedicates itself to parents across OC. https://hbcc.us/ Recommended read: The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. I came across this book many many years ago but rediscovered the audiobook at a time in my life when I needed clarity—new motherhood. It’s the time in our lives when the internal voice questions everything, add in the new mom pressures of caring for a new child, changing relationship dynamics, and some sleep deprivation to boot. Ruiz outlines the key to happiness lies in applying four rules to most of our interactions. I found The Four Agreements especially helpful in my motherhood journey as my identity changed. We, as Moms, often take ownership of our child’s behaviors—after all, they are our little mirrors. But Ruiz explains we can only prepare our children as best we can, the rest is up to them. Their successes and failures are theirs to experience. It’s their journey. Focusing on this can empower your child to explore their independence. The main takeaways for us Moms are:
- Always do your best. No Mama is perfect and as soon as we allow our expectations (for ourselves and our children) to change, we can release the tension. It’s an important mantra for your child too: just do your best.
- Don’t make assumptions. Don’t guess what your child means, ask questions (lots of questions) eventually you will extract their meaning and it will lead to improved communication between you two, rather than frustrations at not being understood. This goes far in all of life’s relationships too.
- Be impeccable with your word. Follow through. Do what you say and say what you mean. Simple really. Forget frustrations at directions not being followed, just say what you need, again, but with more direction or explanation.
- Don’t Take Anything Personally. Don’t take your child’s successes and failures as your own. You are not a failure if your child can’t do something. Reframe that thinking and use it as an opportunity to use more reinforcement or teaching next time. Same goes for when you see that party posted on social media.
If you have listened to or read this before, I implore you to take another listen with a parenting lens, chances are you’ll find some newfound clarity as I did. Together we can help you create a family environment with calm parents who know how to communicate so children listen and partners respect each other. After all, that’s all any of us want for our families and children to be happy and harmonious.