Family Therapy and The Mindful Family
Families are equally as great as they are complicated. When you’ve got a whole group of relationships, communication styles, sibling revelries and personalities at play, everything combined makes for a strong emotional toll on everyone involved. Sometimes it’s sweet harmony, and other times it’s brutal conflict. Wouldn’t it be great to have more of the happy and less of the complicated? Family therapy really can help take care of life’s precious relationships. Being mindful of the way families work systematically, similar to dominos, paying attention to the growing and changing, helping the team work.
Set Your Priorities
Sometimes this means setting priorities for your own personal self-care, and sometimes it means setting your family (as a whole) as a priority, and sometimes this means finding which takes higher priority between the two. Family counselling helps you understand that it’s important to give yourself and your family permission to make time for one another, and for yourselves especially without any excuses. Maybe it’s making time for an outdoor family outing every Sunday for quality bonding time, or giving yourself one night each week for meditation by yourself. Make priorities for yourself, and for your family to build outward from your family therapy sessions, by starting with a mindful self – this is a part that plenty of parents easily forget!
Give Yourself Some Slack
When you make a mistake, it’s important to forgive yourself and move forward. Cut yourself some slack – that’s how mindfulness works. It takes some work keeping focused and being mindful, but understand that when your mind strays, you have the power to regroup your thoughts and bring yourself back to the current, without judging yourself. It’s just like building a habit, practice makes perfect and you have to learn from your mistakes. Accept the fact that even as a parent, you’re still capable of making mistakes. When you mess up, you may have strayed from your intentions, but train yourself to get back to that aha moment and realize that the vital moment is when you invite yourself back and improve on your mistakes. Build outward from your family therapy sessions by following up with a mindful partnership and cutting each other some slack when it comes to practicing your mindfulness.
Mimic Your Children’s Mindfulness
Guiding your children with your seasoned mindfulness is important; but the mindfulness of your child is invaluable for you as a parent. Sometimes, it’s important to use your children’s mindfulness as a guide for your own mindfulness, or you and your partner’s mindfulness to grow and flourish. Family therapy is a great way to break down the defensiveness that many parents feel in a moment where you get push back from your child, practicing mindfulness with your children to stop what you’re doing, take a second to breathe, and interact differently than you previously were. Give up your notion to be admired for being a parent, and understand that if you’re not okay, your children aren’t either. Use that as a drive to let go of that strong defense, and let in the possibility that your children can be a mindful guide for you.