This giveaway is now closed. Please stay tuned for the announcement of the winner.
This is a joint giveaway between Code Name: Mama and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only. Please find the section marked “Win it!” for the mandatory entry and optional bonus entries.
From our reviewer, Dionna at Code Name: Mama:
About Parenting for Peace
I first heard about Marcy Axness’s book, Parenting for Peace, on a podcast from Amber at Strocel.com. I was so intrigued by what I heard that I knew I had to read the whole book.
Parenting for Peace presents a set of principles that parents (current and expecting) can adopt and adapt to their families to raise the next generation of peacemakers. The principles are:
Axness applies these seven principles to seven different “steps” of our parenting lives, from cultivating a fertile mind and body to shepherding our children into the world. Through scientific research and data from experts in diverse fields, Axness shares a road map for how to raise a peacemaker.
What is a peacemaker? It is someone who is “[v]itally engaged in both inner and outer life, imbued with comprehensive social intelligence, . . . [who has] intellectual and emotional flexibility, robust imagination and the ability to devise innovative solutions to complex puzzles.” A peacemaker is resilient and feels safe.1 The seven steps and principles “foster the optimal development of [the brain] and support the flourishing of the whole child – body and mind.”2
What I love most about this book is that Axness not only delves deep into some fascinating research about how we are wired (from conception on) and what parenting techniques are helpful (or not), but she also gives concrete examples of positive parenting techniques and practices that can have far-reaching effects.
Here are just a few of the techniques:
“[W]hatever you put your attention on, you get more of. When we’re upset, we’re choosing to be present to that which we don’t want. When we get annoyed or angry with our children the same thing happens — we’re being present to everything we don’t want, rather than standing in that loving, authoritative center and focusing on what we do want (and calmly expect) from our child.”3
Instead of focusing on any anger you may be feeling, Axness encourages parents to find something they can appreciate. “Think of something that pulls up the ‘appreciation’ feeling from your mental file cabinet, and immerse yourself in that feeling now: . . . . This is especially helpful when you’re in the grip of angry feelings, because as sophisticated an instrument as your brain is, when you’re in a stressed or highly emotional state, it becomes fairly primitive and can deal with only one thing at a time — either anger or appreciation.”4
“If we complain about chores — even just in the way we make the gesture of doing the chore — it will be emulated (perhaps not right away, but years from now). So, for example, take care that the books you read to your little one also interest you; if you are forcing yourself to read to your child (again, as a chore), you risk his imitation in the form of resisting the desire to read!”5
*By the way, I think there is a way to enjoy reading to your child, even if the book isn’t your idea of fun. Just like mamas can choose to nurse through aversion, we can choose to spend time with our children doing things that may not be high on our priority lists – and we can take joy in doing so. I’d recommend adapting this inner awareness exercise, along with any of the other meditations you can access at Presence Parenting.
Here’s an interesting tidbit for you birth junkies: “The latest, hottest technology for midwives (or anyone else attending a birth) is . . . wait for it . . . knitting! A midwife (or doula, or partner) sitting serenely in a corner knitting is considered state of the art in progressive labor care. Knitting reduces adrenaline (in the knitter and by extension in the laboring woman) and cultivates the perfect atmosphere: monotonous, repetitive and beautiful. (A fringe benefit is that knitting is also known to facilitate hemispheric integration in the brain, readying a caregiver for optimally effective responsiveness when he or she is needed).”6
*And you know how I already feel about using knitting as depression help!
Axness also has a section on parenting methods that “de-peace” children: spanking, shaming (for example, saying “why did you lie to me?!” to your four year old), and isolating (i.e., using time-outs). She presents research on why these techniques are harmful (up to a global level) and offers alternatives to promote peaceful interactions.
Sprinkled throughout the text are fascinating stories and anecdotes that will have you reevaluating how you see parenting and life.
Parenting for Peace is one of my new favorite parenting books. I highly encourage you to pick up a copy of Parenting for Peace so you can read more.
You can purchase your own copy of Parenting for Peace on Amazon for $12.63.
Or pick up a signed copy plus the CD “Calm Authority for Mothers” at Marcy’s website for $39.95.
For your own chance to win one of two copies of Parenting for Peace, enter by leaving a comment and using our Rafflecopter system below.
Two winners will each receive one copy of Parenting for Peace. Contest is open worldwide.
MANDATORY ENTRY: Tell us one way you have parented peacefully this week. You must enter your name and email address in the Rafflecopter entry system for your entry to count, after leaving a comment on this blog post.
Leave a valid email address so we can contact you if you win. Email addresses in Rafflecopter are not made publicly visible. Please leave the same valid email address in your mandatory comment so we can verify entries.
See the Rafflecopter entry system for bonus entries to increase your chance of winning after completing the mandatory entry. All bonus entries are entered directly into Rafflecopter. Just click “Click for instructions” for guidance and then “I did this” — any comments or extra information such as URLs can be entered into the “Extra Info” box. Give it a try or visit the Rafflecopter tutorial, and email or leave a comment if you have any questions!
Contest closes July 24, 2012 at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time.
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