The power of play

healing power of play

First published in The Natural Parent Magazine, New Zealand.   Play provides children with a rich world of engagement, fun, communication, learning and exploring. When a child climbs a tree, they not only stretch and strengthen their muscles, develop their coordination, and explore their edges with height and balance, they also deeply bond with the Read More

Helping little people deal with their big feelings


Young children can feel and express a lot of big feelings!  Figuring out how to best deal with their upsets is all part of the job of parenting.  Children cry when they fall, when they get a fright, when another kid jumps on the swing they had their heart set on. They can cry when they’re Read More

Sleep training – research highlights the myth of self-soothing

crying babe

  Sleep training is sold as being beneficial, not just to the sleep deprived parent, but also to the baby who apparently learns to “self-soothe”.  However the lead researcher, Wendy Middlemiss, of a recently published study provides evidence that although the babies soon display lessened distress at the lack of responsiveness from their parent during sleep Read More

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