We are witnessing a critical time in the breakdown of the family unit. We need to create unity in family life…whether it is in a blended family or single parenthood. This is needed for peaceful living, a peaceful state of mind for you and your children. Let’s explore how you can feel less pressure parenting and offer a loving,peaceful envoirnment for your family…you, your spouse, your children.
"Peace Smarts is a program/curriculum designed to bring a peace culture into the lives of youth grades 5-12. Parents,teachers,and after-school programs have adopted the principles to build communication skills, conflict-resolution techniques,creative solution and problem solving on issues that concern youth.
From building self-esteem to across curriculum subjects such as the environment and drug and alcohol abuse, we teach kids with tools to succeed in life. Statistics show that youth today are living in the confusion and turmoil, often bullied not only by the peers, but from the media and society at large that sensationalizes degradation and disrespect: from the political arena to celebrities that are poor role models. Children need an ethical structure that allows them to feel what is right…and ultimately be able to perform right actions: when it counts, under pressure, and to stick with their convictions.
How do we build this Peace structure?
1. It starts within…the ability to tune into your true nature.
This includes teaching a child that they can deal with their unresolved feelings and challenges. Whether it be anger,worthlessness, the syndrome "I want to be accepted and to fit-in. Parents be mindful, we model what our child sees on a daily basis. Creating a quiet-time in our home. Having the agreement that reflection is good,slowing down is necessary for balanced living.
Take a few minutes each day, to listen to soft music. To breathe deeply and slow down the mind. Take time in the garden,or in nature (at the park) or hiking, bicycling, getting out of the traffic rush.
2. Find interests that the family enjoys together. Have fun and create daily memories to shared always.
Interest Examples: A painting project to spruce up the child’s room, or a drumming session with each family member participating. Eating meals together is vital. Avoid stopping at fast-food places. Prepare meals together, sing and make-up songs. Have fun, laugh, enjoy your precious time.
3. The essence of family activities is communicating, beyond the role of parent and child. Having mutual interests, keeps the line of communication open. This vital practice, opens trust. When the time comes that child needs to turn to you, when they are troubled or in trouble, the groundwork has been set. They will know it is safe to turn to you, for assistance,advice and comfort. This is a state of empowerment.
4. Boundaries are necessary for Peaceful Living.
Having family meetings to establish what is acceptable and what isn’t is vital. When your children are involved in decision-making, they learn to be adept decision-makers. They build confidence that their opinion counts and they learn to listen to other points of view without resistance. They learn to be a team player, in a Peaceful family think tank that benefits the whole.
5. Consequences for not abiding for the rules set: can be agreed upon by all family members. Honoring those consequences builds character and helps a young person to understand the meaning of integrity,accountability, and resilience.
When the family is viewed as solid unit,a team to be relied upon…we learn what unconditional love,respect and honoring truly is. How we treat one another will make Peaceful living a way of being…
Merrie Lynn Ross writer/filmmaker/comedienne/child advocate creator of "Peace Smarts" acclaimed programs serving thousands of parents,children,teachers nationwide.
Merrie Lynn’s New book:
"Bounce Off The Walls – Land On Your Feet" Morph Havoc & Hassles into Harmony & Happiness