Mummy has been sent a new parenting book, Kids Don’t Come with a Manual, and she has been asked to review it.
The book is written by Carol and Nadim Saad. Carol is a Montessori trained teacher NLP practitioner and relationship coach and Nadim has an MBA from INSEAD, is a serial entrepreneur and a systems relationship coach. They have three children.
As a single mum I was apprehensive that the advice would be for two parents, as it’s written by a couple. I have three of my four children still at home, my eldest is in Uni. I find parenting tough at times, despite being a trained counsellor, and relaxation and meditation teacher, parenting can be as tough as it gets! Especially when there is no one to hand over to. This book, although it does discuss joint parenting, and has a section ‘Teamwork’, is just as applicable to single parenting.
The book claims there are three key parenting styles – the strict parent, The All-heart Parent and (the one we should aim to be) The Balanced Parent.
I find myself, I suspect like many other parents, a bit of all three! It was useful to identify these styles, and I am working towards being a Balanced Parent.
I like that you can dip into the book at any section which are clearly marked in the index.
I don’t have time (or patience!) to read a book from cover to cover, so this is great for me – as are the summaries at the end of each section.
It did make me feel sad, and a bit of a failure when I read some parts – I know I am too shouty, and I have to have respect from my children, I guess it is SO important to me because I’ve never had it from their father. But I can be a bit verbally horrible and my children are copying me.
My tween turns 13 in the summer, and we are having some issues, but this book is honestly proving invaluable to me.
Modelling – or leading by example – is proven daily in my house. For example –
Me – shouting – ‘what do you think you’re doing?’
Tween – shouting – ‘NOTHING!’
Me – ‘do NOT shout at me like that!’
Tween – ‘well you’re shouting at me!’
Much better to speak. To ask. To not shout! Calmer for everyone.
I have already started to change my attitude and behaviour towards my children, for the better. I am using more positive language, resisting intervening in sibling squabbles, and giving Pickle limited choices, which does seem effective.
I like the idea of setting rules in the third person – I do already do this to a degree, using the ‘in our family we do…. Or we do not ….!
I also found the section about sibling fighting enlightening!
Leaving them to sort our their battles is actually teaching them a valuable lesson rather than me wading in – as I do – sometimes not knowing who started it, or who is in the wrong.
The book won’t magically turn you into the perfect parent, but, it is a brilliant aid to helping you enjoy parenting and facing the challenges it brings in a more positive way.
Page 16 – getting the most out of the book, and the sections and tools are explained.
Page 221 – siblings using violence and teasing. My middle two love each other dearly
but also fight like cat and dog – sometimes physically. I hate it. I rush to step in, but I’m
not going to next time.
Repairing tools (page 4 tool 14). Repairing is such a positive tool , one I do use without realising.
Page 82 – Rewind and replay tool – so important, and effective.
I love that there are quick and easy solutions, and ones requiring more time. And that an age guide is given too.
The book is simply and effectively laid out.
Separate the behaviour from the child. I don’t like what you are doing , rather than I don’t
Always reinforce your love for them.
Listen, you have two ears. Only one mouth. Practice Active Listening. As a trained counsellor this is one of the most important life tools we can have.
Breath! Stop, take a breath before you wade in. Take a moment to act not react.
I highly recommend this book, it is easy to read, easy to navigate, and the advice really works!
I am using it with my toddler, tween and teen!
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