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The Parenting Junkie Show

Author: Avital Schreiber Levy

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Hi,
I’m Avital.
(pronounced Ah-Vee-Tal)
I’m a mindful parenting coach, childhood designer, and mother. My work is dedicated to empowering intentional, imperfect parents (like you and me!) who face chaos, clutter, and conflict, through online tools to reclaim peace, presence and play for your family.
77 Episodes
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Do you feel like you carry the bulk of the load in your relationship? Like all the responsibility falls on you? Like the division of labor and the mental and emotional burden isn’t fair?  It’s understandable...and it’s also ruining our relationships. In this episode I’m going to walk you through a series of questions to help you shift your mindset and improve your relationship with your partner.  [02:16] Are you keeping a running tab of "who does what" in your head?  [04:05] Keeping score undermines your partnership. [07:59] A transactional approach to relationships is a major cause of division and conflict in relationships. [13:36] Is there really such a thing as equality in a relationship? [14:16] Do you really want things to be totally even, all the time?  [14:43] Does keeping score promote unconditional love? [15:58] Does it feel good when you pit yourself against your partner?  [16:07] Does nitpicking your partner make you love them more or less? [16:32] When you keep track of how much you give, does that make you a better or worse version of yourself? [16:53] What does your partner do that you appreciate greatly?  [17:19] What does it mean to you to love someone and accept them as they are?  [17:27] How does that look, and how do you know when you're practicing that?  [17:33] Ultimately, are you displaying unconditional love through it all?  [18:10] What's the difference between trying to change someone and trying to evolve with someone and influence them?  [18:30] What does your partner appreciate in you that you might be forgetting or discounting?  [18:42] What competencies, energies, and skills do you each bring to the relationship? [18:57] Should we be forcing each other to bring the exact same qualities to the table?  [19:23] Or should you each be contributing to the best of your abilities in our own special way? [19:32] What's the meaning of seasons in life?  [20:01] Are you accounting for the differences in personalities, temperaments, and abilities you each have?  [20:16] Are you communicating your needs properly?  [21:02] Are you using punishments to control or manipulate your partner? [21:37] Are you truly looking for you both to shine your brightest?  [21:47] Are you holding onto a victim mindset? [22:02] Are you ready to let you both shine in your unique and individual ways? [22:37] There's no such thing as a win-lose in relationships. If one loses, you both lose. Ultimately how we partner is how we parent. We should do everything we can to be peaceful partners, because it will translate into our parenting and make a big difference in all of our relationships.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Check out our latest training, Worth The Fight.
I know there can be a lot of anxiety and indecision when it comes to the topic of school vs. homeschool. How do you know which way to go? What if I try it and it doesn’t work? What if I ruin my kids?? In this episode I’m going to walk you through the decision making process and take you from indecision to clarity.  [10:42] “The best use of imagination is creativity. The worst use of imagination is anxiety.” Deepak Chopra [11:58] 1. Our role is to choose the environment in which our children educate themselves. [14:04] 2. Our choices aren't right for everyone. They're only right for our own families. [16:27] 3. Nothing is set in stone. We can make changes if something doesn't feel right. [18:40] Use this matrix & process to help you make a decision. [20:31] Education [22:13] Time [23:31] Cost [24:39] Reliability [26:16] Method [28:01] Socialization [31:50] Autonomy [33:22] Health [34:17] Relationships [35:58] Intuition [36:45] Add in any additional considerations for your unique situation. [41:02] If you're going to homeschool, work on mindset before you go out and buy all the awesome stuff.  [42:12] Learning can only be effective when you and your child feel good about it. Q&A: [49:29] I want to homeschool, but my spouse thinks I'll ruin our kids.  [51:47] How old were your (Avital's) kids when you started using your Focus Time approach? [53:03] What is a "hybrid model"? [54:25] How do I homeschool a preschooler and still work 8 hours from home? [56:07] What homeschool system do you recommend for non-English speakers? [56:43] My spouse thinks socialization will suffer if we homeschool. [58:22] I'm not a structured person and already struggle with routines...I fear it may be a little too much. [59:55] What time are the Q&A sessions if I join Focus Time? [49:29] I want to homeschool, but my spouse thinks I'll ruin our kids.  [51:47] How old were your (Avital's) kids when you started using your Focus Time approach? [53:03] What is a "hybrid model"? [54:25] How do I homeschool a preschooler and still work 8 hours from home? [56:07] What homeschool system do you recommend for non-English speakers? [56:43] My spouse thinks socialization will suffer if we homeschool. [58:22] I'm not a structured person and already struggle with routines...I fear it may be a little too much. [59:55] What time are the Q&A sessions if I join Focus Time? [1:01:02] What age should we start? I think my kids are too little. [1:02:20] Do I need to homeschool, or is unschooling an option? [1:03:30] Does homeschooling work between divorced parents? [1:04:33] Would Focus Time help me decide if homeschooling is for me? [1:05:13] How do you handle "demand avoidance"? [1:08:06] My Mom is an elementary school teacher and talks about homeschoolers always being behind when they start school. If you’re still unsure or are homeschool-curious, check out our course Focus Time. It will help you gain clarity and take a peek behind the curtain to see what it’s like to homeschool.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Go here to get a pdf copy of the decision matrix. Join our course, Focus Time Need help convincing your spouse? Check out my free ebook 10 Zen Secrets Of Persuasion.
So many of us have been pushing through, waiting and hoping for things to return to some sort of “normal”. But with a second wave sweeping through the world it seems like it may never get back to normal. And now with the school year approaching and continued restrictions wherever we go, there’s no end to the opportunities to feel anxious, fearful, and overwhelmed.  In this episode I want to help you recommit, reenergize, and reinvigorate yourself, bolstering your resolve with 3 simple mindset shifts.  [05:58] If you're feeling frustrated, cooped up, judged, irritated, etc., you're not alone. [08:13] How can we view everything through a more compassionate lens? [09:21] I believe there's a better way to handle differences of opinion. [17:11] Mindset #1: The benefit of the doubt. [22:03] Mindset #2: Believe in yourself [26:51] Mindset #3: Be the you that you want to be. Rather than approaching things with anxiety, judgement, shame, and guilt, we can use these mindsets to come at things with love, grace, compassion, integrity, and make a positive impact on the world. Let's be the people who increase calmness, peace, and reason. People who promote a sense of togetherness instead of tearing us apart.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Not sure if you should let your kids go back to school? Thinking about homeschooling? Attend my free workshop to help you gain clarity on what’s best for you and your family!  Want to homeschool, but feel overwhelmed? My course Focus Time will help!
Does social media stress you out? Research indicates that it can cause anxiety and even depression. I’ve heard countless people say they felt great after taking a break from it. Why is that?  In this episode I want to offer a breakdown of the recent social media landscape; how it may be harming us, what we can do to keep our sanity. [04:56] Links between social media and anxiety and depression. [10:37] Social media seems to be getting darker and the cons are beginning to outweigh the pros.  [14:23] A large part of it stems from anonymity, and losing face-to-face interactions. [18:49] There's a major lack of accountability. [22:52] There's a lack of discourse and an inflation of terminology. [24:22] The main factor contributing to anxiety is catastrophizing. [25:30] We're also losing our individuality. [26:28] There's a major lack of diversity of thought.  [35:38] It's brought back public shaming (which we did away with in the 1800's) [36:33] Can we start interacting online like we do with people offline?  [40:50] Social media is heavily influencing us and ultimately enslaving us. Social media is a tool, and all tools can be used for good or evil. It can be a tool that unites us, helps us keep up with friends and family and develop bonds and connections with people we otherwise wouldn’t have the pleasure of meeting.  But it can also be a major source of anxiety and depression, and can derail the relationships with people in our “real life”. So let’s re-evaluate our social media habits and make changes where necessary.  If we can start giving people the benefit of the doubt and treat each other with respect and dignity (like we would if we were interacting in person), we may see a shift in our interactions online.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital.
Join me in a conversation with my friend Kate Northrup, "Do Less" author, as we talk about time-management, work-life balance, and vulnerability.  Sometimes we feel we have to hide some part of our parenting because we're afraid of people's judgments. We fear sharing our whole, vulnerable self because disagreement is often met with hostile, dogmatic, judgmental comments.  One of the things I’ve worked hard to cultivate is friendships with others where it is ok, desired even, to say your honest (respectful!) opinions. And I think this conversation about vaccinations with Kate exemplifies that type of supportive friendship.  [03:18] How entrepreneurship and parenthood converge. [04:34] The origin of "Do Less". [09:02] We have to advocate for ourselves to get our needs met. [12:41] Let’s give our children "trust to show up for themselves". [15:17] “Less preparation, more presence” -Adrienne Maree Brown [17:21] Do less, so that what we do is high quality. [19:48] Avoid "keeping score" and tallying the hours spent being mom, working, etc. [21:47] Looking outside of ourselves for what we "should" be doing can be dangerous.  [25:44] Let's talk about vaccinations... [32:16] How Kate handled pushback on her vaccine stance. [38:36] We shouldn't have to walk on eggshells or be afraid of saying the "wrong thing".  [42:42] You can't "go there" with everyone, but often if we take the lead and try, we'll be pleasantly surprised. [43:22] How Kate "does it all". [52:35] Stop beating yourself up! If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Kate’s book Money, A Love Story Kate’s book Do Less Emergent Strategy by Adrienne Maree Brown Kate’s website Find Kate on Instagram @katenorthrup
Do you feel tired or burned out in your parenting? Do you feel like you’re “on” all the time and never get a break? Do you think your child’s happiness and entertainment falls squarely on your shoulders? In this episode I want to address an issue I see a lot; overparenting.  [03:01] What is overparenting? [07:24] A big indicator of overparenting: Burnout [08:08] Overparenting is not good for the parents [10:45] Don't take on other people's roles [12:34] Overparenting is not good for children. [15:34] Overparenting makes children weak, timid, and fragile.  [16:53] It's not your job to keep your children happy. [20:09] It's not your job to constantly entertain your children.  [24:00] Get comfortable with discomfort.  If you find yourself in the overparenting camp, start sitting back a little more. Let some of those things go, and stop taking on roles you weren’t meant to take on.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital.
There’s a mindset that has permeated our culture and it’s causing a lot of damage. It ruins our homes and families, our relationships, and even entire communities. Which mindset? Blaming. Let’s discuss. [03:32] The blaming mindset is rampant in our culture. [08:41] How does blaming help?  [09:49] How a blaming mindset affects our homes. [10:29] Blame triggers defensiveness. [11:53] Blaming over-simplifies a problem. [14:13] Blame makes people deflect. [16:34] Instead, let's develop a solution mindset. [20:19] Say “We don't blame in this family.”  [21:17] Empathize When we empathize with people and focus on finding solutions together, we’ll find that there’s opportunity for growth and learning, and it’ll strengthen relationships instead of tear them apart.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Need help figuring out how to homeschool? Take all the guesswork and trial and error out with our homeschooling course, Focus Time.
Many people have been struggling with feelings of powerlessness and negativity. But what if I told you that you possess the ability to empower yourself and create positivity in your life? That’s exactly what I’ll be discussing in this episode.  [03:50] Our thoughts and words are powerful. [06:48] Culture has "watered down" certain words and concepts. [10:54] When we use exaggerated words, it sets us up for failure. [13:28] It's making us fragile. [18:41] Let's disempower our negative experiences. [21:42] Challenges make us stronger, not weaker. [23:10] Let's be more discerning and selective with the words we're using.  [24:09] We can choose how to interpret our challenges and circumstances. Let’s reflect on the words we’ve been using lately. Are they exaggerations? If so, they’re weakening us and holding us back. Let’s commit to flipping that script and interpreting things in a way that strengthens us and finds the good in our lives.     If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Book “The Coddling of the American Mind”
We all want to be better communicators, right? I know I do. Like most things in life, improving our communication is a process and it takes intentional work to help us break old habits and create new ones. Join me as I discuss some specific toxic patterns that we all need to break and what we can do instead.  [04:13] Communication skills are so important to be a healthy adult. [06:14] We often fall into old habits and patterns. To change that we have to work on learning new skills and break the old patterns... [08:56] Interrupting [10:38] “Shoulding” over everyone. [11:36] Generalizing (always, never, etc).  [12:42] Yelling [14:29] Threats and ultimatums. [16:40] Pointing & physical intimidation. [18:48] Criticizing & name calling [19:46] Shaming [20:51] Stonewalling If you start working on these areas and push past the awkward early stages, you WILL see progress in your relationships. Don’t give up!   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Develop 10 powerful tools of communicating artfully with your partner with this free ebook.
There’s a mindset that keeps parents stuck and suffering, and really holds us back. We have a lot more control in our lives than we sometimes believe, and it can take some gentle nudging (or tough love, for some of us) to help us see things for what they are. Changing our mindset in this one area can make a big difference in our lives and empower us as parents and leaders of our family.  [04:20] We often CAN do the things we say we can't do...we've really just chosen NOT to do them. [09:29] Saying "I can't" breeds desperation, anxiety, and depression.  [11:05] We have nearly endless choices over the majority of things in our lives (80%).  [12:58] Why do we choose not to? Sometimes we just don't want to.  [14:10] Sometimes we aren't willing to pay the price. [16:40] Sometimes it's just not a priority for us. [17:08] We need to take ownership of our choices. [19:04] Reframing our choices is empowering and can help us through difficult circumstances. So instead of saying “I can’t”, which is true only 20% of the time, own your choice: Say you don’t want to, you aren’t willing to pay the price, or you’re prioritizing other things. Then when you need to, remind yourself of the choices you’re making, and why you’re making them.  Need help setting up your family for homeschooling success? Check out our course, Focus Time. If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital.
Because sending kids to school is often the “default option”, I’m often asked “Why do you homeschool?”  I think it’s time to start reversing that question and ask “why are you sending your kids to school?” When you really think about what your school provides (or doesn’t provide), homeschooling may begin to look much more appealing and not as out-of-reach as you once thought.  Let’s discuss. [05:19] Why do I homeschool?  [08:00] Schools are a service, and we can decide if that service is right for us. [08:50] Service 1: Babysitting [09:29] Service 2: Education [12:08] Service 3: Socialization & community [14:11] With how much is at stake, the real question should be "why send your child to school?" [16:06] You don't have to be a trained educator to homeschool. [18:01] There are other options if babysitting is the main reason you send your kids to school. [20:00] Many schools push rote memorization, which isn't effective. [20:32] We can help our kids develop skills they might otherwise learn in school. [21:01] There are ways to help homeschoolers make friends and build community with others. [22:41] Schools often use extrinsic motivation, which isn't effective. [23:44] They learn to compete instead of collaborate in schools. [25:11] It may require certain sacrifices and lifestyle choices, but it's so worth it.  [26:41] It may not be for everyone, but if you want to do it, you can! If school really is the best option for you and your family, great! But I want you to at least work through these questions and justify why you’re sending them to school. Let’s do what’s best for our children and family, even if it means going against the default.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Check out our new course, Focus Time
Even without a global pandemic, life can be hard. Bad things happen and we all experience difficulties and challenges. It’s easy to feel sorry for ourselves and go through life as a victim. But I’m here to tell you that there’s so much more waiting for you on the other side of victimhood, and you can decide to leave it behind. Let’s discuss how.  [04:07] Society pressures us to sacrifice everything on the altar of parenthood. [05:36] Feeling your feelings is step 1, and victims get stuck here. [08:01] It's ok to feel that way. But do you really want to stay there?  [10:31] Humans have the ability to overcome the craziest challenges and hardships, and can come through it stronger. [12:49] Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional. [15:12] If you want to stop feeling like a victim, you have to stop seeing yourself as a victim. [17:32] Not all stress is bad. [18:37] We need to mind our own business and focus on things we can control.  [20:36] We need to take control of our thoughts. [23:32] We have power over our words. [30:13] Double down on what we can control. [32:40] Present Play is an amazing resource to help overcome a victim mentality. Join before the doors close for another year! The choice is ours! We can stay in the suffering and live life as a victim, or decide enough is enough and leave it behind. So much of it is within our control. We are not powerless. We’ll find that these simple changes will have a major compounding effect if we continually reframe our situation and choose to stop seeing ourselves as a victim.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Join Present Play before the doors close on May 1st!
I get messages from parents all over the world (hundreds a day) asking how they can get their kids to play independently.  I hear things like: My kids won’t play My kids are clingy We live in a small apartment My kids have very different play styles My kids fight with each other I’m a working parent, so it can’t work for me I’m here to tell you that those are just excuses! And to help you see that your kids are capable of independent play, I wanted to share some stories from a few of my “Present Players”. [01:14] No matter how out of control life may feel, there are always things we can control. [06:10] Independent play is a skill that can be developed [07:56] Independent play has incredible benefits for our children. [08:55] You don't need to buy anything. You'll likely even get rid of some things.  [11:17] Hear how Elizabeth learned to prioritize play, and accommodate 2 very different styles of play for her children. [12:46] “Strewing changed my life...It's like magic.” [15:34] She found that each of her kids have different play needs, and does what she can to encourage and protect that. [16:18] Hear Galina's story about how she set up her zones in a tiny New York apartment. [17:18] Overwhelmed in her small apartment with too many toys. [18:48] Even though she has a small apartment, she has found a way to set up all of her play zones. [21:07] “I wasn't sure if my child could play independently because he was clingy.” [23:59] Don't let excuses get in the way! If Galina can make it work, you can make it work too! [25:11] Melissa didn't know how to organize life in the midst of chaos. [26:01] You don't have to do everything at once [26:10] Make sure the structure of the space makes sense for the intent of the space. [26:31] Even in quarantine (with 6 people in a 3 bedroom house), she was able to set up a space for school work without affecting her existing play spaces. [27:18] It eased the transition to homeschooling [29:06] Hear Victoria's story, and how she's able to "parent from work" and direct her son's play, even when she can't be home with him.  [30:40] You can set up your home with small changes, using things you already own. [31:18] Is it relevant for a 10 month old? Yes, and he's morphed into an independent play toddler. [31:35] Has allowed her to set up her caretakers (and son) for success by strewing and designing his play areas. Whether you have lots of space and access to the outdoors or you live in a small apartment with no outside space, you can design your home in a way that encourages independent play. Whether you’re a full-time caretaker or work full-time, Present Play will help you set your kids up for [independent play] success.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Join the “Love Parenting with Avital” Facebook group! Check out the Play Guru module for free before it closes!  Join the challenge!
I know that these times have been tough for many, leaving some in a “survival mode.” But others have found, in spite of the challenges and frustrations, that they’re enjoying certain aspects of their time at home with their family. And it may leave us wondering...do we really want life to go back to the way it was before? Or is it time to make some changes to the way we live our lives? Let’s discuss.  [03:19] Let's choose to find the good in a bad situation.  [05:40] Amidst the hardship and trials, you might find yourself enjoying it. [08:23] We may find things about our lives that we want to change going forward. [14:26] What I learned living through terrorist attacks in Jerusalem. [17:16] It's so easy to focus on only the bad things when you're in a crisis. [17:46] There are always gifts to be had, even during tragedy and crisis. [20:13] Challenges we face can give us perspective and remind us of what's truly important.  [20:59] We need to create the reality we want and lead our families.  Let’s not let this opportunity go to waste. Let’s assess our lives and start crafting the reality we WANT to live, and not just go back to life as it was before.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Join the challenge!
At times in life (and for many, the present time), we’ll face challenges and changes in our resources. To stay sane (or sometimes just survive), it’s necessary to adjust your expectations to what’s realistic given your circumstances.  [08:53] We can choose whether or not to be a victim. [10:29] We have to match our level of expectations to the level of our resources. [11:17] When you lose resources, there's a transition period where you may be edgy and frustrated. Give yourself grace! [12:11] If you're measuring against old expectations, you'll feel like a failure. It's time to adjust your expectations.  [13:34] Resources can be time, money, etc., but we must also consider physical, mental, and emotional resources. [14:43] Assess how your resources have changed. [15:43] In areas where there's a depletion of resources, there MUST be a depletion of expectations. [16:49] We must be adaptable, and flexible...even in our parenting styles.  [17:58] If you're feeling overwhelmed, just focus on the next thing. [19:07] Celebrate every win, no matter how small. It’s liberating when your expectations are adjusted to reality. You can focus on what’s next, give yourself some breathing room (and grace), and look for the good in the situation we’ve been handed.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Join the challenge!
Renee Jain is back for another episode! With so many parents finding themselves homeschooling, we thought we should offer some practical tips to help parents through this challenging transition and help you (and your kids) stay sane!  [02:50] Cut yourself some slack. It's not realistic to think you'll be a homeschooling pro in a couple of weeks.  [03:05] Kids go through a "de-schooling" process; expect it to be rocky. [05:41] Be realistic about the amount of time it takes to figure out a flow that works for your family. [07:33] Some routine and rhythm is helpful. Try focusing on 3 "big rocks" [12:11] What is our role in all of this? [13:37] The highest priority is to preserve an energy for connection and family joy. [15:31] Trying to recreate a school experience at home is a complete waste of energy and causes disconnection between us and our children. [17:31] Let's not put academic pressure on our children during this time. They'll be able to make up for whatever was "lost". [19:15] So what should they be doing? Play.  [19:56] This is an opportunity to show us just how capable our children are of entertaining themselves. [22:54] Play is crucial for our children's development. [24:24] Become a play guru!  [25:59] We can have certain rules around a few things, but for the most part, let your children be. [27:43] We can help our children get into a state of "flow" in their play (which I call free play). [29:44] When you're in "flow", you're not directed or rewarded by someone else. The activity is the reward. [30:03] Don't interrupt their flow! Let them be. [31:54] This also teaches them responsibility for using their time well. [33:36] Experiment with strewing!  [35:52] Boredom is a choice. If they're bored, put it back on them. Help them in age appropriate ways, but let them figure it out.  [37:22] There's a difference between encouraging independent play and being disconnected. [38:00] Give your full attention during care-giving activities, but otherwise, give them some space. [41:14] Homeschooling doesn't require you to be constantly present all day long. [45:50] Thinking you have to entertain your children all day long will lead to resentment.  [46:39] Hold the boundary and they'll adjust and get over it. [48:22] Set limits to protect the relationship. [49:33] How to stay organized when strewing. [50:26] Don't take it personally if they aren't into a strew idea. Some will land, and some will not. It’ll take a little time to “de-school” and figure out a new normal. Focus on helping your children play and get into “flow” and don’t worry about their academics. It may not happen overnight, but you’ll see change quicker than you think.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Play Guru Course (free for a limited time) Show Notes: https://www.theparentingjunkie.com/59
As we face the COVID-19 Pandemic, there’s a lot we can’t control. It can cause major fear, anxiety, and worry...but it doesn’t have to. This episode is from a live video I did where I shared 3 questions you can ask when you’re facing a crisis, and I wanted to share it with you in hopes it will help you through these uncertain times.  [02:49] Question 1: Who do I want to be? [06:53] It may not come naturally...you'll likely have to work to be the person you want to be. [07:16] I try to imagine what my older and wiser self would say about the situation. [09:48] You can be doing the right "whats", but the "how" will make a big difference in your experience. [10:55] Question 2: How can I help? What can I [practically] do? [13:22] Our kids are looking to us to learn how to handle crises. [16:09] If you're not on the front lines, focus on what you can actually do. Spend your energy there.  [21:02] Question 3: Look for the blessings in your situation. [26:59] Challenges make us stronger...if we let them.  We don’t have control of this situation. And to a large extent we can’t control how it develops and how it changes life as we know it. But we can control our perspective and how we respond. The choice is ours.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to Instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on Instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Lawrence Cohen’s book The Opposite Of Worry. Show Notes: https://www.theparentingjunkie.com/58
Hi friend! Do your kids ever get angry or throw tantrums? Do YOU ever get triggered by their tantrums and lose it?  🙋🏻‍♀️I do. We all do. In this episode you’ll get to hear from the amazing Renee Jain of GoZen as we discuss how to “handle” emotions in both our children AND in ourselves.  [05:37] What is GoZen in a nutshell? [09:20] We have to make peace with the idea that stress and difficulties are a part of our humanity. [09:42] Feelings aren't good or bad. They're neutral. [11:24] Create a character (a name) for each emotion (such as “Fury” for anger). [14:30] Emotions come and go. They're not permanent. [14:44] We need to have a relationship with the [seemingly negative] emotion and see the upsides. [19:23] Anger/fury usually pops up for protection, or when boundaries have been crossed. [22:10] Don't try to teach your children things "in the moment."  [22:48] We need to model what it looks like and stop trying to control our children’s emotions.  [27:28] In those moments, try putting on your detective hat. [31:24] Play is so important, even when they're throwing angry tantrums. [32:51] Progress should be measured in years, not days.  [34:44] Practice or role play (outside of the moment) to teach them how they can respond differently when they're in the moment.  [41:21] It's a marathon, not a sprint. [44:52] We can't be afraid of feelings and try to always suppress and control them.  [48:26] Get a stuffed animal for each of the 4 main emotions and use them for role play. The work never really ends, but if we’ll remember that progress is measured in years and not days, that it’s a marathon and not a sprint, and implement some of the tips that Renee mentions, we’ll start to see some lasting change in ourselves and in our children.  If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Go Zen's Website  Go Zen’s Masterclass Dear Anxiety Podcast Episode Show Notes
So many of us want to improve our relationship with our partner. The love, romance, and fun we once had evaporated when kids came along, and we’re left scratching our heads, wondering if we made a mistake or if we can ever get that back. I’m here to tell you that it’s possible! And that it’s normal to go through these seasons of challenges in a relationship.  In this episode I’m going to give you the blueprint from my Parent In Love course and give you some actionable steps you can take to make changes in your partnership, even if you don’t sign up for my course.  [03:54] Why is it so hard to make your vision or dream for your relationship a reality? [06:30] Why I talk about improving our relationships. [12:26] It only takes one person to make significant changes in your relationship. [13:34] Step 1: Mindset [17:00] If you have any thoughts about leaving, that needs to be addressed first.  [18:18] Step 2: Communication [23:52] Step 3: Teamwork [30:13] Step 4: Vision [31:56] Learn how our own childhood and past experiences influence our partnership and parenting. [34:48] Make time for some deep conversations. [35:34] Step 5: Connection [40:45] Step 6: Leadership (how we parent together) If we don’t put some time and effort into changing ourselves, our partnership won’t change. Sure, our partners have things to work on...but so do we. And if we work on ourselves and how we react and respond, we’ll start to see changes in how our partner reacts and responds too. It only takes one person to make big changes in a partnership.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources: Unleash Your Inner Power Couple Workshop 10 Zen Secrets Of Persuasion eBook  Video about reconnecting with your partner Parent In Love Course
In this episode I’m going to give you a framework that you can use to create anything you want in your marriage, family, and life. [02:52] You can create family bliss [02:59] We want people to move from just consuming our content to creating. [05:31] What do we mean by "create"?  [06:11] Commit [09:39] Reframe [12:03] Educate [13:58] Action [15:54] Trust [17:22] Envision It’s a cycle...when you commit to making changes, reframe your circumstances, educate yourself, take action, trust the process, and envision what life could be, it fuels the process and creates more energy to continuously propels you through C.R.E.A.T.E process.   If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!Are you subscribed to my podcast? Subscribe here so that fresh episodes are delivered directly to you. Those shiny 5-star ratings and sweet reviews have me all gushy, thank you. But more importantly, they help other parents discover the Parenting Junkie Show and spread the word about Loving parenting and Parenting from Love. If you have a moment to spare, those reviews mean the world to me, you can leave one here.  Want to connect to like-minded parenting junkies? Join our (free & awesome) FB community Love Parenting with Avital. Resources:   Show Notes: https://www.theparentingjunkie.com/55
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Comments (9)

Crissi Dares

GREAT episode. So reassuring and such important info

Jun 26th
Reply

Clarissa Langford

absolutely brilliant!

Jun 22nd
Reply (1)

Ruska R

Avital, just put those cereals in special boxes. They stay fresh & you don't need to roll anything. Problem solved. (Posting this with humor. 🙂) You are awesome, thank you!❤️

Nov 4th
Reply

Ruska R

This episode is pure GOLD!

Nov 4th
Reply

Jordan Nicole

I'm so incredibly type A and when given a strict guideline I follow it to the T in an almost unhealthy way. So the permission to relax and change things if it's not working for me is the best advice I've ever gotten. I feel more confident in trusting myself and I'm inspired by your advice and experience. Thank you Avital!

Oct 23rd
Reply (1)

Diana Cross

Definitely not for me. I listened to the whole first episode to give it a chance and after wading through 15 minutes of nothing before it properly started, I didn't really agree with anything at all.

Sep 9th
Reply

Samantha Perry

Thank you Avital! It's like you know what I need to hear and when. You've changed the way I see parenting!

Apr 8th
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