Why We Wrote a Parenting Book
Analyn and I have a passion for parenting because we believe every family can have a joy filled home that offers hope and successfully launches productive young adults into the world. We believe this is possible by making a subtle shift in how we see our kids and how we measure our success as parents.
We believe our journey, comprised of both negative and positive experiences, provides an object lesson for parents to glean from. We do not claim to be experts on the topic of parenting but we have learned some valuable lessons along the last 25 years parenting 7 children. As you read the blog, pick up a copy of our book, bring us out to speak, or hire one of our coaches, we pray you gather helpful, hopeful, and most of all practical strategies to apply in your own parenting journey. One of the core messages we are most passionate about sharing is the idea of shifting focus. It is all too easy to see and focus on the faults in our kids.
Once we get past the initial awe and wonder of the blessed baby season, our children will start to exhibit behavior that can be frustrating. Living in frustration is exhausting, so instead choose fascination and aim to discover the heart and nature of your child through every stage of life. A shift to what we call “discovery mode” with our kids - the same discovery mindset we had in their first year of life - is key to shifting the focus and seeing who truly are. Discovery mode means looking beyond the actions of our kids and seeing their essence, who they truly are. While behavior way wear on our patience, we have the opportunity as parents to fulfill one of our children’s basic human needs - to be known.
Now, don’t get us wrong. We are not advocates of permissive parenting, allowing our children to do whatever they feel like doing and going along with the whims and ways our toddler or teen think are best. Nor are we at all advocates of a hands off approach to parenting, which in our opinion looks like neglect. At the same time, we found that a top down, autocratic, military style approach to parenting did not produce good results, especially when our kids hit their adolescent years. All we managed to do was estrange our emerging teens.
We believe God directs us how to raise our kids. He provides us with incredible insights from his Word, and he gives us the Holy Spirit as a teacher and guide. He will empower us to shift from a negative, weakness oriented approach to a positive, strengths based approach to parenting our kids. He will help us see all that is right rather than merely what is wrong with our kids. Additionally, God gives wisdom generously to all who will ask allowing us to learn from our mistakes rather than replicate cycles of discouragement, frustration, and destruction in our parenting journey.
This is our story. When our older three kids were just entering their teens and adolescence, we made the shift to a strengths based approach to parenting. We worked hard to keep our eyes focused on what was right with our kids, instead of being consumed with what was wrong with them. Our kids were not, and are not perfect little angels. We have some challenging personalities coupled with strong willed temperaments and fiery dispositions. Each of our beautiful and wonderful bundles of joy, have, and do present major challenges. And why wouldn’t they, their kids! They are supposed to make messes along the way of life so they can learn who they are and how to get along in this world.
We hope and pray our efforts to add to the parenting conversation make a positive difference. If you would like to learn more about the work we do or to ask us parenting questions please contact us through our website at www.analynbrandon.com.