Living Outside the Box with Your Child 

As a young person growing up on a farm in rural Iowa, I lived in an area where many people “knew your business.” It’s a place where you could get a reputation if you stepped outside the box or if someone even suspected you had.

So I tried to fit in, even though I never really felt that I did. I tried to put on a good show so no one would know how isolated and lonely I felt. As you can imagine, this was incredibly restrictive and limiting to me, and , yes, I did get an undeserved reputation from people who had no idea who I was.

Fast forward to becoming a mom at 27 when I made a conscious choice to raise my son in a way that made sense to me. I had observed other parents relating with their children, and I had seen the limitations of the ‘usual approach.’

I wanted no part of it. I knew my son – all children – were much more than the adults around them realized. No more trying to fit in or not stand out as different.

I chose to focus on the two things that really mattered to me –

I wanted Orion to be who he was, not who society, the education system, or I wanted him to be. I wanted to support him in being his own person and living his truth. What I today call his Inner Brilliance.

I wanted to have a great relationship with him, where we were authentic, honest, and trusting with one another as people, not based on a traditional mother – son relationship.

These two priorities mattered more to me than anything, and I did my best to not let his room, schoolwork, friends, clothes, and other minor issues damage what mattered most.

If you ask Orion or I today, we will both agree these two priorities made all the difference as we continue to cherish our honest, loving relationship with one another.

Living outside The Box, parenting outside The Box requires two things:

1. The willingness and ability to think for yourself. To look around you with a questioning eye and to find your own way. Focusing on making your choices consciously and not simply going along with the crowd and fitting it.

2. The courage to trust your child and yourself. The courage to be seen as different and to stand out, most likely inspiring others to reconsider the choices they make as a parent. To be willing to fly in the face of authority and tradition, even when you’re scared and uncertain.

Now it’s your turn. What matters most to you as a parent? What are your highest priories for your child and yourself? I’m talking Big Picture things here. Not academic achievement or achievement of any kind. Not your fears or concerns. Dream big!

What do you really want to create / share / experience with your child?

Then let this be your guide. As you look at the day-to-day challenges, how can you honor your highest priorities as a person who is a parent and create a joyous, honoring relationship with your child?


An Invitation to join “Our Children’s Inner Brilliance Community’

Want to chose your highest priorities as a parent and learn how to stay focused on them through your day-to-day interactions with your child? This is exactly what we are going to talk about in our September Community Call on Saturday, September 27.

If you’d like to continue this exploration and discussion, I invite you to join ‘Our Children’s Inner Brilliance Community.’ where we explore this and other topics to nurture your child’s and your parenting Inner Brilliance.

This Community is for anyone – parents, grandparents, educators, concerned family and community members – who care about nurturing the Inner Brilliance of our children and who want to nurture them in being who they are.

Click here to learn more and join us today!

Play Dough ‘Ignited’ My Granddaughter!

I had the most wonderful experience with 3.5-year-old Madison yesterday that filled us both with such joy. In an email I received from The Artful Parent blog, I was reminded how much kids love play dough. Madi and I hadn’t played with it before, so I decided to make some with her.

After a pretty uneventful process of making it (she kept asking if she could taste it, remembering all the yummy things we have made previously!), we dumped all of it on a plastic tablecloth on the living room rug. Within moments, she began making a big, fat pancake with all of the dough and then folding it, every minute becoming more vibrant and animated.

Then she got the idea she’d like to cut it and ran into the kitchen to get ‘her knife,’ which cuts almost nothing but play dough. Together we made fudge and marshmallows, all of which had to be fed to her baby.

The entire time she was breathing more heavily than usual and sharing how much fun she was having. There was an intensity, a confidence, a certainty, a positive power I don’t think I’ve ever seen in her before, and she is not usually a cautious, held-back girl. She was passionately  ‘on fire’ and I was blown away.

Later when we got in the car, she told me, “Grandma, you are the most wonderful grandma I ever saw.” Said with heart-felt appreciation. The play dough was the perfect thing at the perfect time. I can hardly wait to play with her again!

Nurturing children’s Inner Brilliance is the most impactful, joyful gift we can give children, whether it looks like cutting play dough together, listening to their concerns or wants, or setting limits. When we focus on supporting our kids’ Inner Brilliance, we are on-track to bring out the very best in them.

If this is a priority for you also, I invite you to attend my FRE^E annual ‘Nurture Your Family Virtual Retreat’ where you’ll have the opportunity to explore ways you can nurture your child’s Inner Brilliance and create truly joyous relationships with him /her.

We’ll meet via a phone conference line and our three calls will be recorded.  By registering, you’ll be able to  get the recordings shortly after the retreat and listen and do the exercises at a convenient time for you.

Click here to find out more and to sign up.

Feel free to share this anyone whom you feel might be interested. Thanks so much for spreading the word!!

I’m sure you’ve had a similar, magical experience with a child.  Would you please share it with us ?

Don’t Miss This Call Tonight! Nurture your Child’s Self-Confidence

This is your last chance to join us for my class tonight “5 Essential Secrets to Raising a Self-Confident Child.” I have so much crucial information to share with you.

In fact, as I’ve been finalizing the content for the class, I’ve discovered I have SIX essential secrets to share with you. I promised I would give you the best I have about nurturing your child’s self-confidence, and that is exactly what I am going to do.

Often parents don’t recognize when their child is struggling with confidence, a lack of grounded trust in herself. Yet if your child has recurrent emotional meltdowns or angry outbursts, if your child hesitates, is often uncertain, or lacks motivation, your child is in some way struggling with self-confidence.

I invite you to take a moment and consider how important your child and his confidence is to you.

Then consider what you are willing to invest of your time and finances to nurture that. It’s probably a lot.

Now let this powerful feeling of commitment to your child and her self-confidence move you to take action right now.

Sure, spending more money and being on the phone tonight may not sound like the highlight of your day right now. But what if you leave the class more energized, more inspired, more focused and clear about what you need to do to nurture this all-important quality in your child?

What if you can make a profound, positive change in your child’s life by making a few simple changes in your own behavior and in your awareness of what your child needs from you?

The time is now. There is no more ‘tomorrow’ to sign-up. I’d love to share this information with you.

Click here to sign-up now.

If you already have something you’re doing tonight during this time and cannot be on the call live, sign-up now and I will send you the audio recording and the transcript within just a couple of days.

Plus, if you have a question you’d like to ask me about your unique situation, go ahead and register and then email your question to me by 3 pm Pacific today, and I will answer your question during the 30-minute Q & A at the end of the class.

Don’t miss this impactful, life-changing information! I am blown-away by all the content I will be sharing with you tonight!

Click here to sign-up now.

Oh, and when you come to the call tonight, be sure to have paper and pencil and your favorite drink so you can get the most from this class for yourself and your child.

I look forward to talking with you soon.

To your Joyous Family!

P.S. Please tell your friends and family who might also want this information about nurturing their child’s self-confidence. Make a difference in their lives too! Thanks.

How Praise Damages Your Child’s Self-Confidence

Many people will tell you to praise your child, that it helps her self-esteem and develops self-confidence. Yet if you are a parent who praises your child, you’ve probably noticed that it may make her feel good in the moment but does little to build self-confidence in the long run.

You continue to see signs of your child struggling with self-confidence. Or perhaps you want to do all you can to develop his feeling of being able to trust himself so you praise him often.

You may believe praise and encouragement help your child’s self-confidence; yet, in fact, you may be unintentionally and unknowingly diminishing and limiting her confidence.

In my new video below “How Praise Damages Your Child’s Self-Confidence,” I share with you two powerful ways in which praising and encouraging your child actually limits this crucial quality.


If you’ve missed any of my previous videos about nurturing your child’s confidence, click the links below.

“5 Qualities Your Child Needs to Be Self-Confident”

“Why Your Child’s Self-Confidence Matters”


If your child’s self-confidence is a priority for you, don’t miss my new teleclass “5 Essential Secrets to Raising a Self-Confident Child.”

In this class, you will learn:

~ 5 reasons why self-confidence is important

~ 3 ways introverted children express their self-confidence that is different than extroverted children

~ Why encouragement actually diminishes your child’s confidence and what to do instead

~ 5 effective, simple do-now actions that will nurture genuine self-confidence in your child

The teleclass (class by phone) is next week on Tuesday, March 12 at 6:30 Pacific.

Don’t let this one get by you!

Click here to sign-up and learn more now!

I hope you enjoy the videos!



Are You Missing Out on Heart-Felt Appreciation from Your Child?

Almost every parent I talk with in depth admits they don’t feel appreciated by their child.

Parents of young children don’t expect appreciation, believing their youngster is incapable of such awareness.

Parents of teens hate the lack of appreciation they receive for all they’ve done and are continuing to do for their adolescent, yet it is considered ‘normal behavior’ in teens.

Those parents with children between toddler and teen passionately hope their child will figure it out.

When my son was young, I committed to trying something different from what I saw parents around me doing…and with profound, amazing results. Now, observing my two grandchildren ages 2 and 5, I am continually blown away by their heart-felt appreciation, politeness and kindness toward me and others.

Watch the short video below to learn the most important part of developing appreciation in your child.