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When Modern Consumption Becomes a Style of Parenting

Luke Hancock
Written By Luke Hancock
June 10, 2014

Many of us have grown up in environments where the connection and unconditional love was absent or limited and often replaced by material needs and rewards. Often parents may compensate for their lack of spending quality time and energy with their children by providing material gifts. It is somehow easy to use money to resolve a time/emotion problem. This using of gifts to pacify the child both eases the guilt within the parent and appeases the child on a superficial level. We have been educated under the patriarchal system with the belief that having the food on time, enough clothes and being an achiever and well behaved is enough. Stuff, possessions, replaced time, love and attention. However the child still needs emotional intimacy on a deeper level and if this human need remains unfilled there are very real consequences in adulthood. Dr. Shefali, world-renowned clinical psychologist and author of Conscious Parenting says, “Just because our children came from us it doesn’t mean we get to dictate to them How it is they express their essence.”

If we observe carefully since the Second World War, the cost of living has steadily been rising, also known as inflation, while our salaries have stagnated and the purchasing power of our money steadily decreasing. This is the economic reality we live in today for the majority of the people excluding the rich. Ten dollars today buys you far less than it did ten years ago, the purchasing power of fiat money has decreased. This economic reality forces parents to spend more time at work and on their careers or business and less time at home with their families. This is a daily challenge that the majority of families. In many cases today, the primary role of the parent has become one of income generation as opposed to being the emotionally mature and physically available parent/role model that children so badly need.

In an ever growing amount of cases, the parent may have two jobs, taking even more of their precious time away from their family. The consequence of all of this is that many parents today have less and less time to connect with, and become healthy role models for their children. To make matters worse, our society offers one of the most important jobs or roles in the world, that of being a parent, no training about how to be a parent. No training in understanding the child’s developmental needs as they progress from infants to teenagers. According to the pioneer of the self-help movement, John Bradshaw, children experience five different stages of childhood developmental needs, namely infant, toddler, pre-school, school and teens. In each of these stages there are very different needs that all children have. If any of these different needs are left unmet during childhood this often leads negative psychosomatic disorders in adulthood. Furthermore, due to a lack of genuine parental time to provide unconditional love, the child’s developmental needs are compromised which in turn severely impacts the healthy growth of their self-esteem, self-worth and ultimately their Inner Foundation. Again, this often unconscious neglect can lead to serious negative consequences in adulthood. For many generations the emotional connection of unconditional love has been largely neglected within the family unit.

For a parent that has not done their own healing work that can be a hard truth to swallow, when adults often live their lives through their children. To make matters more complicated many parents have not taken the time to do their own healing work and so are often unaware of the unconscious patterns they are playing out. This means that at an unconscious level that we as adults are often projecting the same patriarchal authoritarian belief systems on to children that we received as children. The inter-generational trauma cannot be interrupted and stopped if we do not do our healing work. Could it be, that the lack of time and unconditional love inside the family unit and the excessive time and energy given by parents to survive in this modern day consumer economy, is one of the leading causes of the psychosomatic disorders we see today in adults? When parents have less time and energy to give to their children and act as role models, children look elsewhere for these role models.  Dr. Gabor Mate explains this reality well in his book “Hold on to your Kids” that “Children take their lead from their friends: being ‘cool’ matters more than anything else. Shaping values, identity and codes of behavior, peer groups are often far more influential than parents.”

According to the CDC, Today’s current rates of depression, suicide and homicide among teens and young adults is a very real and present danger that society and us as elders are badly failing the next generations. We need to learn how to become better role models so we may guide the young generation more wisely and skillfully. Doing our internal healing work is one of the main and only ways we are going to heal our families, schools and communities and ultimately become better role models. Simply put, parents and non-parents (adults without children) need to devote more quality time and energy to their own healing work and less time on distractions and buying stuff. This way, they may heal from their past adverse childhood experiences and the societal and family conditioning so present in our patriarchal system today. A system that has suppressed men and women for far too long!! Times are finally changing, in part due to those prioritizing their healing work and the simultaneous shift in consciousness that is taking place across the planet today.

There is professional support to assist you on your journey. If what you have read resonates with you the feel free to connect with us by writing a comment below and grab you free copy of Luke’s life changing book, “Own Your Power”.

There are some important things you should consider when embarking upon this journey of healing and personal transformation:

  • Learn to develop the growth mindset and the motivation to change your life. Realize that you will probably experience pain when going through change
  • You will most likely need the support of a mentor, counselor or someone who has actually been on this journey of personal transformation.
  • Having a solid healing & coaching framework will ground you into practical daily steps to shift your mindset from where you are to where you want to be.
  • A continuous support program to help you to embed the new daily routines into your life.
  • You will need to have a supportive community that respects you and is there for you when you need.

Having a strong Inner Foundation is fundamental to reaching your full potential and life of happiness and satisfaction. Whatever you choose to believe, feel and act upon either moves you away from or towards your desired future. Without a a strong Inner Foundation supported by healthy habits, the chances of failure increase dramatically. Your mindset, beliefs and attitude are crucial for you to create and navigate a successful happy life. Are your beliefs supporting or sabotaging you from successfully moving from where we you today to where you want to be in the future?

Did you know that knowing yourself, trusting your internal guidance and believing in your decisions is the most empowering and liberating experience of personal growth? But if you cannot trust and accept yourself or you fear the consequences of your decisions, then you won’t be able to recognize and access your full potential. Today, many of us do not know ourselves deeply and so don’t trust ourselves or our decisions. Instead, we often rely on the opinion of others to make key life decisions. By looking outside to get approval or validation from others you became trapped, suffering from trying to fulfill societal and family expectations and demands. As a result, you  lose sight of who you truly are and what is important to you. Instead you wear a mask to please others instead of having the courage to embrace your authenticity.

Have you consider having a strong Inner Foundation, your personal power can emerge to manifest your authentic self? How would that feel to you? Today you may believe within yourself something is not right and deep down you may feel powerless, not knowing how precious, powerful and wonderful you are!

But have you considered wherever there is a internal crisis, there is also an opportunity for a powerful transformation towards rebuilding your Inner Foundation?

This internal crisis is a natural, necessary and urgent wake up call to born out of an internal intuitive knowing, that things in your life must dramatically change. It’s a wake-up call for you to review your life! To (re)discover who you truly are and reevaluate what’s important to you! If this resonates with you, then you will really enjoy reading The Inner Foundation Book.

Luke Hancock Own Your Power

About The Writer

Luke Hancock is the author of the book Own Your Power. Since 2012, Luke is an accredited Transformational Life Coach with the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and since this time has been coaching individuals through their own journeys of personal and professional transformation. Since 2016 he has been delivering professional training and coaching courses to businesses, schools and individuals. Luke is also an environmental sustainability consultant, guiding businesses (employees), schools and communities to reduce their “environmental footprint’ and become more sustainable in their operations.

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