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Cultivating a solid sense of self through nurturing our basic needs

Updated: Oct 26, 2021

Today more than ever, we are bombarded with messages about who we should be, how we should look and act, what possessions we should own, and how we should run our lives. The underlying message is that we need to check in with the outside world for direction in life and confirmation on how we are doing, completely overruling, and disregarding our own truths and values. How do we stop this cycle and get back in touch with our needs and our inner voice?

Let’s take a look…

We all have basic needs. As parents, it is our job to recognize, accept and cultivate those needs for our children, and for ourselves. When our physical needs are met on a continuum, our bodies grow and thrive. When our emotional needs are valued and nurtured, the relationship between parent and child strengthens and the connection becomes the anchor, giving the child something to hold on to, at least psychologically.

There is no perfect recipe for success in parenting, but in my opinion, there are key principles that cultivate connection on a continuum. When we put emphasis on the connection with our children, we make the relationship the priority. With that, we relay to our children that they are more important than their behavior, and when something comes up, that our deepest commitment is the child himself.

Our four basic needs are:

· Suitable sleep

· Nutrition

· Appropriate movement

· Relationships

When meeting our children’s needs becomes a deliberate daily focus, we nourish our children’s sense of self, letting them know that they are loved, valued, and accepted just the way they are. Being ok with who they are, strengthens their sense of self which allows them to think for themselves, act in accordance with their values, and ultimately, to count on and trust themselves moving forwards. When our needs are met on a continuum, we learn that we are good enough just as we are. And when we experience that we are good enough, we can lean on ourselves and honor our inner voice. That inner voice serves as our personal GPS, guiding us as we walk down the path of our life while staying connected inside.

What a beautiful gift that is!

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