So the holidays are around the corner and history continues to prove and repeat itself with the stress patterns that come when deciding what to buy our children, followed by the anxiety of the shopping frenzy, long lines, procrastination, credit card debt, wrapping gifts and so on – very exhausting just thinking about it – let alone acting on it. Yet, as a society, we continue to “buy” into the madness over and over again.
And at the end of the day after “the rush” wears out and ultimately wears us out, we are left with an inner self of over indulgence of what has been done, expectations that have been set to our children and ultimately lacking to convey the important messages of the holiday season – spending time together, with our full presence (not presents) and truly cherishing what blessings we have (not “needing” or asking for anything more).
So before you head out shopping this holiday season, ask yourself a few of these key questions:
1. What is my intention in buying my children so many gifts? What does this say about me and my own needs?
2. How am I teaching my children, through my own actions, about what it looks like to spend quality / valued time together?
3. What lessons do I want my children to learn when it comes to receiving gifts (tangible and intangible)? What does that mean to me first and how can I demonstrate those teachings through my own actions?
4. What one or two new holiday traditions can I create consciously that will align with being more present with my children?
On the continual path of conscious parenting, through the holiday season and beyond, let us all be reminded by some of Dr. Shefali’s insightful messages from The Conscious Parent …
“Our children first and foremost need us to give them our attention, not our money. The gift of our attention is so much more valuable than anything money can buy. If from a young age our children are taught to value our relationship with them over the things we buy them, we set the stage for a reliance on their inner being rather than externals.”