Let’s face it, children can be challenging.
Those who raise or work with children have many resources to support them yet often feel frustrated that nothing seems to work. Instead of feeling less stress, more confident, more effective and a sense of setting children on a course for future success, they feel the opposite.
Many feel like the guidance intended to help is overwhelming, confusing, discouraging and even makes things worse.
So, I am often asked – what is different about the Nurtured Heart Approach® (NHA) and why did I choose it to practice both personally and professionally?
I can answer the second question quickly because, like many parenting experts, I feel it is important for adults to trust what feels right to them. The Nurtured Heart Approach felt right to me 🙂 It resonates with my own intuition and energizes me with the results I want for myself and my children. My ‘right fit’ is no longer an elusive goal.
Simply put, NHA gives people the ability to be who they always wanted to be.
More specifically, it has brought me to a new level of grace when things are challenging, influence when things are not and empowerment to access either. Rooted in authentic connection, relationship and choosing to focus on what is going right, it gives us the why, when, how and what to steer intense behaviour in a productive direction while building strong children from the inside. The result – empowered adults, connected families, classrooms and communities and children who believe in their unique qualities for lifelong success.
Parenting our children still has its challenges, after all, people are not meant to be perfect. But, with deep compassion for myself and my children, I feel more confident, patient, effective, empowered – and nurturing.
So, what makes the Nurtured Heart Approach® different? In the words of a client, ‘…it goes above, beyond and below anything else that is out there.’
Here are some commonalities between NHA and other philosophies around raising children.
• use encouragement, positive words and calm emotions
• have strong and supportive relationships
• clarity, consistency and boundaries are paramount to help children build trust and feel safe
• everyone wants and deserves to feel loved, to belong and to feel good about who they are
• adults have a tremendous amount of influence in what we model
Here are 5 things that make NHA unique and powerful.
1) The 3 Stands – beautifully clear, simple, accessible, applicable and effective.
♥ The same techniques are used regardless of age, ability, situation or goal. They can evolve with you and your children to always be your limitless ‘go to’ resource. Most importantly, they are easy to remember and return to if you get off track.
2) No energy to the negative – an incredibly enlightened concept.
♥ NHA moves moments of ‘negative behaviour’ from moments to punish, teach or ignore to moments where we can hijack the inappropriate to the appropriate. Many other practices have us inadvertently give energy to negativity (albeit subtle or intended to be kind, loving and compassionate) which keeps us sending the wrong messages. In some cases, they even hurt our children.
3) Energizing the positive – rich and simple tools allow endless creativity.
♥ NHA is WAY beyond praise and confidence boosters – no empty words or ‘good job’. It uses genuine, authentic and in the moment evidence to teach values, rules and the ‘how’ of self-regulation. All in the energy of truth, connection, love and compassion.
♥ NHA is heart-centred with the intention and goal of building Inner Wealth®. Therefore, it can have a profound influence of appreciation to the child. Most other teachings don’t reach that same level of “what this says about who you are.”
NHA helps empower adults to use our responses as well as proactive measures to create opportunities for success and inspire transformation.
4) “Behavior management” – NHA transforms rather than manages.
♥ Like many, it promotes problem-solving, autonomy, choosing solutions etc. in order to be successful. Unlike many, it goes deeper to instil the qualities that drive those skills. By looking at each child as a unique being with their own personalities, strengths and likes we find qualities that can be nurtured to become their greatness.
♥ Many conventional approaches are about the adult taking control because the child is ‘out of control’. What we really know is that we have little to no control over others. Furthermore, searching for the ‘perfect’ punishment feels futile and frustrating. NHA offers the critical yet under-utilized power of perception, timing (when we show up) and quality (how we show up) instead.
5) There is no ‘shame’ in not being ‘perfect’.
♥ NHA uses individual performance to teach rules and solutions while providing evidence of existing skills. It inspires individual greatness rather than expectations to measure up or reach for an artificial “ideal”.
♥ NHA teaches both parents and children how to know and acknowledge feelings. Once re-balanced, one can make a healthy choice of what to do with them and take the next steps forward.
NHA leads to beautiful outcomes for adults and children. It gives parents the ability to feel like they are making a difference rather than just doing what they have always done even if it doesn’t work. Most importantly, the intention is to be clear, consistent and compassionate in attaining the most important ingredient for success – Inner Wealth®.
The parents I meet, want to enjoy parenting the children they have. They want to feel confident that how they parent is effective. At the end of the day, they want to feel they have the ability to best help their children possess all they need to live a successful and fulfilling life
When you have the right philosophy and the right tools you can!
Marny Elliott is a Parent Coach and Relationship Counsellor. She empowers parents, educators and professionals to use the Nurtured Heart Approach®, an effective, heart centred method to transform behaviour, build relationships and grow the Inner Wealth® of children. In addition, she provides holistic counseling to adults seeking to address defeating patterns and improve their relationships with themselves and others. Please visit www.joywithin.ca, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250.218.8702.