What is “PATH Parenting”?

PATH Parenting is a natural, creative, compassionate parenting style that empowers children and parents to enjoy living, loving, and learning together in harmony. PATH Parenting makes the adversarial methods of traditional parenting obsolete by focusing on four positive pathways to power:

Partnership, Authenticity, Trust, and Heart

Partnership is a pathway to power through connection.

A healthy partnership is a mutually empowering relationship that grows stronger through empathy and creativity. When people feel connected to each other, more power to one is more power to all. The more you give, the more you have. It's a win/win game. In partnership, you resolve conflicts creatively by focusing on what works for the whole partnership instead of making right/wrong judgments that weaken connections and lead to power struggles. Partnership-oriented parents don't seek power over their children because they enjoy being powerful with their children.

Authenticity is a pathway to power through alignment.

It's the quality of being true to yourself, emotionally honest, and aligned with your innermost being. As a child, whenever your elders resisted your authentic expressions, you were compelled to create a false self that would be "acceptable" to society. As an adult, the false self undermines your efforts to create healthy partnerships with your children, family, and friends. But when you align your thoughts, words, and actions with your true self, your relationships begin to align, too. Children are naturally more cooperative and respectful with adults who demonstrate and support authenticity.

Trust is a pathway to power through understanding.

Lack of trust in your children or yourself leads to anxiety, which disconnects you from your power. Understanding relieves anxiety and restores trust, which reconnects you to your power. When you have a clear understanding of human nature, you can trust that children’s behavior is always an expression of their innate goodness, and "misbehavior" is primarily an indicator of unmet needs. When you understand your emotions, you can trust them to connect you with your authentic inner guidance. And when you understand that the universe is benevolent, you can let down your defenses and trust life.

Heart is a pathway to power through unconditional love.

When you value the intelligence of your heart, you open the door to an abundance of wisdom and creative possibilities that would otherwise go unnoticed by your rational mind alone. Heart also means courage. It takes courage to keep your heart open even when you have plenty of "good reasons" to close it and stop loving. Unconditional love transcends reason. It's not something you do because it's "nice" or because you "should." When you love unconditionally, you are reclaiming the power that's rightfully yours: the power to choose love for no reason at all.

The PATH acronym is not merely an easy way to remember these four pathways to power, it's also a reminder that the journey is the destination. Goals give you direction, but life is what happens on the path, in the ever-present now. PATH Parenting makes you more fully present as all four "power moves" — connection, alignment, understanding, and unconditional love — are aspects of presence.

As you master the art of being fully present, even under the most trying conditions, you become a catalyst for peace, love, and joy — not only for your family but for everyone you encounter in life.

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Coaching: Get support for PATH Parenting

Note: This summary is nearly the same as that of The PATH Way. However, this one describes the concepts in terms of parent-child relationships.