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Natural Awakenings Boston

Conscious Parenting

I hope that you love our feature article this month as much as I do. In “Growing Up Empowered: Helping Kids Step into Their Best Selves,” writer Judith Fertig offers insights on how parents can help their children grow into confident and capable individuals. It offers a perspective full of reassuring hope that, regardless of what else is happening in the world around us, leaders of following generations are being equipped to succeed. Given encouragement by parents and mentors schooled in conscious living, there are no limits.

One of my favorite success stories is that of Jacob Barnett. At age 2, his parents were told that due to a diagnosis of autism he would likely never speak or read. His mom refused to give up on him, freed him from society’s systems with their limited expectations and encouraged him to follow his own interests. Believing in her child’s potential, she gave him the opportunity to believe in himself. Now 18, Jacob is working on his doctorate in quantum physics. He’s who he is because the hearts of a mother and son knew better than the “experts”.

I’m a bit envious of young people raised with a conscious style of parenting that lovingly keeps kids safe while allowing them enough leeway to make their own choices and mistakes. My siblings and I were raised to be afraid of taking chances. This came with rules like: stay within the lines; danger lurks around every corner; always play it safe; and follow the rules regardless, because adults know what’s best better than kids do.

It wasn’t until I was 40-something and introduced to Landmark Worldwide’s Landmark Forum Course that I gleaned my first glimpse of what it means to be truly independent and accept responsibility for where I am in life. It took time to figure out the how-to and the lessons continue to come. Today I’m grateful for the many twists and turns that have contributed to my ability to live a more empowered life and am convinced that I wouldn’t be writing this letter to you today if I hadn’t risked the changes that that course inspired me to undertake.

Please join me in voicing kudos to parents, teachers and mentors everywhere that are actively encouraging today’s youth to boldly think and act for themselves. You have the world’s future in your hands.

Happy summering,

Maisie Raftery

Maisie Raftery, Publisher