Positive Parenting Affirmations and Resources

July 6th, 2015 by Dionna | Leave a comment
Posted in Carnival and Special Series, Consensual Living, Gentle Discipline Ideas, Successes, and Suggestions, Gentle/Positive Discipline, natural parenting

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A Safe Place - Code Name: Mama

In preparation for my homebirth with Ailia, I attempted to do something that has never come naturally for me: relax.

I’d had a long, hard labor with my son that would have ended in a cesarean section, had I not been with a patient midwife in a birth center. I was scared of a repeat performance.

And so I taught myself how to relax. Climbing in bed one night sometime during my second trimester, I explained to Kieran, my then three-year-old son, that I was going to practice relaxing all of my muscles. I told him that learning to relax was important for mama to be comfortable during labor. Kieran’s fierce desire was to be my labor partner, and he immediately wanted to “help.” So he lay down next to me to learn how to relax, too.

With lights low and the room quiet, I started out just the way Mind Over Labor advised. I said, “First we are going to think about a safe place. Your safe place should be somewhere that makes you feel comfortable, safe, and secure. A place that, if you are ever hurt or scared, will make you feel better when you think about going there.

I was imagining our family bed on the beach, waves gently breaking in front of me. I asked Kieran if he could describe his safe place, and this is what he said:

“Snuggling in mama’s arms.”

I love being my child’s safe place. And that is one reason I’m committed to positive parenting – I want to be the place of safety and constant love for my children, not one of hurt or fear. Today I’m sharing five of the top reasons I practice positive parenting.

Below are five statements (use them as affirmations!) I have written for my own parenting journey, along with related resources. I invite you to share your own goals and resources in the comments. If you are interested in parenting more positively and intentionally, whether you are a seasoned pro or just switching over to parenting mindfully, I hope you will find something empowering and informative on this list.

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5 Reasons I Practice Positive Parenting

  1. My children are kind, compassionate people because they care about others and our community.

    Positive parenting teaches children empathy and helps them internalize self-control and pro-social behavior. I don’t want them to “behave” simply to avoid punishment. I also don’t want to teach them that the bigger person and/or the one with more power wins. For more on the drawbacks of punative parenting, see:

  2. My children are learning positive lifelong skills in how to cope with frustration.

    Conflict is a problem to solve, not a war to win. Instead of pushing away my parenting frustration, it is often helpful to recognize it, take a breath, and re-channel it into a more constructive response.

  3. Parenting positively helps me address needs – my own and those of my family.

    At the root of all behaviors are needs. When I take time to discover what my child needs (love, food, respect, safety) and help my child figure out a strategy to meet that need, it does more to take care of any undesirable behavior. If I simply dole out consequences or punish misbehavior, then I am not helping my children make the connection between needs and emotions/behavior.

  4. By parenting positively, I am building stronger parent-child relationships and stronger and happier sibling relationships.

    Parenting with respect is the foundation for a happier family. Not only does it create strong, positive parent-child relationships, but research has shown that non-punitive parents have children who “fight less and are nicer to each other.”1

  5. I parent intentionally. I parent to nurture connection, maintain healthy boundaries, and promote our family’s values.

    I strive for connection and cooperation, not coercion. Respect, not fear. Acceptance, not conditions. I want to provide an environment of emotional safety so that my children can come to me even when it isn’t easy for them. I want to teach my children to see conflict as a problem to solve. I want to be the face of love for my children – yelling, shaming, hitting, blaming – those actions are not born of love. Parenting mindfully can help me. Reacting out of fear or anger does not teach my children the values I want them to learn.

Why do you parenting positively?

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Photo 1: Author
Photo 2 modified (words added) with permission from the owner via Eric Rudd Photography

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