Why I Do What I Do

People often ask me why I am became a social worker. Of course, there’s many reasons why I wanted to help people – part of it is just who I am. I was always the person my friends came to for a listening ear and a shoulder to cry on. I’m also insatiability curious. I want to know about people and why they do what they do and about their lives. I believe people are doing the best that they can and I believe people are good at heart and are capable of change. It’s not always on my timelineContinue Reading…

Perspective

One of my favorite questions to ask parents in parenting coaching sessions is “How do you think your child felt in that moment?” This often comes after they’ve recounted a challenging interaction or a meltdown or a time when they felt like they couldn’t do anything right. Those things happen to every parent. One happened to me this morning. We can’t always see things from our child’s perspective in the moment – maybe we are tired, frustrated, triggered, or just too worried about something else like getting to work on time – it’s human. None of us get it rightContinue Reading…

How to create a better start to your days!

One of my most frequently asked questions is how to improve mornings – whether it’s getting out of the house or navigating drop-offs at daycare, preschool, or grade school. Parents often say, “I am not a peaceful parent in the mornings!” It’s hard to have empathy and patience when you have PLACES TO GO! Mornings are hard. I’m right here in the trenches with you. Here are my best suggestions! Snuggle Up! Spending even five minutes of the morning filling your child’s love cup with some cozy time gives you both an oxytocin burst – that bonding hormone is profoundlyContinue Reading…

Four Agreements for Parenting

I remember the first time I read Don Miguel Ruiz’s book “The Four Agreements”. It was recently out and was getting a lot of buzz. Oprah was talking about it on her show (I’m showing my age…) and it kept coming up in conversation. Every time I read them; I was struck by how impossibly hard they sounded. They are hard. But they are not impossible. Like everything I share, it’s a one day at a time suggestion. Sometimes, parenting feels like more like one hour or one minute at a time and that’s okay too. For now, let’s startContinue Reading…

Minding Our Expectations

Recently I was out to dinner with my daughter on a date. The restaurant we went to is very family friendly and had a great play area for kids. My daughter was off exploring and I was sitting at the table people watching. I am fascinated by people and always very curious about what they are up to – this is why I became a social worker – I want to know all of the things about all of the people. Along with being family friendly, the restaurant has a creative little solution to help you flag down your server.Continue Reading…

The Nuclear Option

Now that the winter holidays have come to a close, I’m taking a look at all of the similar challenges a variety of families have brought to their coaching sessions in the last six weeks. I am always reminded we are more similar than we are different. Parenting is no exception. In every single parent coaching session I’ve had since just before Thanksgiving, something has come up for every family. My child is saying mean things to me! The holiday season is a wonderful time for lots of family time, extended family visits, delicious special meals, presents, and time spentContinue Reading…

What if it’s an opportunity rather than an obligation?

During a yoga class recently, the teacher shared a mantra which I immediately applied to my practice as it was so helpful. She invited us to think of getting to our mat as an opportunity not an obligation. As I was driving home, I realized how much it might help parents to use the same mantra as it applies to parenting. If you’ve taken one of my workshops or we’ve worked together in coaching before, you know I spend a lot of time and focus on preventative maintenance. My mentor, Dr. Laura Markham, outlines the tools of preventative maintenance as:Continue Reading…

Stop, Drop, and Breathe!

One of my favorite tools for self regulation comes from my mentor, Dr. Laura Markham. She suggests we stop, drop our agenda, and breathe when we feel triggered or annoyed. Children are childish, imagine that!, and we will feel triggered! Here’s an example from my morning. After a mostly relaxing morning getting out the door, we hit a snag and were running a few minutes behind. As you can imagine, I was feeling flustered. It’s worse for me when things are on track and then go sideways vs an all over off-track start to the day. We were driving toContinue Reading…

Welcoming Tears

Welcoming tears is a new concept for most of us. Tears are often not welcomed in our culture, our communities, or in our families. We demonstrate this in obvious ways when we tell children not to cry, or when we rush to get tissues when someone starts to cry. We give the person crying the message, “That’s enough.” I always cringe when a parent tells their crying and distressed child, “You’re fine!” I don’t know about you, but I am not usually crying when I am “fine.” I was called “too sensitive” as a child and heard those familiar refrainsContinue Reading…

The Best Podcasts for Kids!

Quite often, I consider going back to a flip phone (do they even make them anymore?) because I wonder if smartphones do more harm than good because of their power over all of us. Of course, actually giving up my iPhone would require a lot of sacrifice. The primary reason that I could never give it up are podcasts. My name is Lisa and I am a podcast addict. If we have a personal conversation, chances are good that I will bring up a podcast episode that you *have to* listen to or recommend one specific to your interests. IContinue Reading…