I spent this past weekend mostly by myself and in many hours of silence. I also slept more than I usually do. I listened to or watched hours of my favorites speakers; I walked for hours on the beach; I meditated; I gave myself the chance to re-connect with my inner world.
Just like our children, we end up feeling off-track, overwhelmed, tired, confused, dissatisfied, unhappy, angry… fill in the blanks…the list is endless. What I am inviting all of us- grown-ups- to (re)consider is committing to create “time -out” for ourselves on a regular basis. How about 30 minutes a week, to begin with? It doesn’t have to be a full weekend or a full day. That would be too scary, wouldn’t it? Or even a reason to feel guilty.
Daniel J. Siegel, M.D. & Mary Hartzell, M.Ed. wrote the acclaimed Parenting from the Inside Out ( 2004; re-publised in 2014) and sub-titled it: How a Deeper Self- Understanding Can Help You Raise Children Who Thrive. Key word here: self-understanding . There is a direct and scientifically proven correlation between our own level of self- understanding and self- awareness about our inner world ( childhood experiences, belief systems, values, default/unconscious emotional reactions, personal boundaries, life purpose and meaning) and our ability to parent mindfully, consciously and in a connected way.
So: because I know that all of you who are reading this post, will take 30 minutes this week to be in silence with yourself :-), here are 11 ( eleven) questions that you can reflect on with gentleness and an open heart, from a place of wonder and self-discovery ( stay open and non-judgemental of the messages you will be receiving from your Higher Self while you are in silence):
- Am I happy?
- When do I love myself ?
- When do I not love myself?
- Who am I right here and now?
- Who do I want to become?
- What are my childhood experiences that are most painful to me?
- How can I heal my past wounds?
- Am I willing to forgive myself and others?
- What am I grateful for right now?
- How can I help others ?
- How can I become the best version of myself in all relationships that I have?
(…) making sense of your life is the best gift you can give your child, or yourself.
Daniel Siegel & Mary Hartzell, Parenting from the Inside Out
I hope this invitation resonates with you, my dear reader, parent and grown-up. Let me know how it worked for you. Yours in gratitude,