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Talking about the Keys of Parenting with Katherine Winter-Sellery




Katherine Winter-Sellery, a leading parenting expert, is the creative force behind the Guidance Approach to Parenting, a program designed to help parents communicate more effectively with themselves and their children. There is no doubt that many parents are looking for help in this area these days, and to help she has released ‘7 Strategies To Keep Your Relationship With Your Kids From Hitting The Boiling Point’ her groundbreaking book. 

‘7 Strategies To Keep Your Relationship With Your Kids From Hitting The Boiling Point’ has readers riveted and exhaling a huge sigh of relief due to its comprehensive, extremely helpful and, yes, much needed strategies. If you are a parent if you are going to read only one book, this is a book for you.

 Winter-Sellery recently took time out of her busy schedule to talk to us about her work, helping parents, and what’s coming next from this gifted thought leader. 

Talk to us about your work life and family life, how do you or did you find the right balance with your own family and what role did those experiences play in founding the ‘Conscious Parenting Revolution’? 

Great question.  I left a corporate job and started my own business before my first child was born and what that allowed me was flexibility.  I had a nanny and she would bring him to the office for me to breastfeed him and then she would take him in his stroller for a nap up and down the streets of HK!  I think HK is in my children’s bones because of this!  When my daughter came along I would bring her to the office for the first year and she slept under my desk most of the time until she needed to be fed and changed and then back to sleep!  It was fun, everyone in the office would come in to see her too.  Later I would always pick them up from school and take them to their after school activities.  My work and my children were always interwoven.

Talk to us about why it is important to eliminate the 3Rs from your parenting style and your relationship with your child? 

I have been alluding to the 3Rs throughout.  Dr. Thomas Gordon actually was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 3 times around his research that discovered when you use a controlling form of discipline that you activate retaliation, rebellion and resistance.  In my TEDx talk at Case Western Reserve University The Rebellion is Here – We Created It, We Can Solve It | Katherine Winter-Sellery | TEDxCWRU I go into depth about the relationship I see between school shooters and the 3Rs and why it is URGENT that we learn a Guidance Approach to Discipline so that we have an effective alternative to this ineffective and dangerous “power over” approach to behavioral disruptions. We must move away from an authoritarian approach that punishes kids for their behavioral mistakes and believes that if you make them regret their lapses in self control and pay for it with a removal of a preferred activity that they will learn how to control themselves and regulate their emotions.  It doesn’t work!  We need to teach emotional self-regulation, healthy non-violent self-expression and problem solving skills and then children and adolescents can attain mastery over themselves and their behavior.

What can people expect when they do a breakout session with you? 

Clarity around the issues that they are facing, how they got there, and a road map to where they want to be. If people keep using the same old ineffective approaches to communication and conflict resolution they will continue to reap the same old harvest that I commonly hear parents describe as : not listening, not cooperating, spoiled, mean, self centered, out to get them, manipulative kids.  I can show them how to get to kind, considerate, loving, cooperative and connected.  Something is broken down, with the right support there is healing and reconciliation and new habits replaces the old knee jerk ineffective responses. 

You have helped thousands of parents achieve their AHA moments with their children, those people look up to you for advice and inspiration, the question is who do you turn to for advice and inspiration? 

I was blessed to have trained under Marshall Rosenberg, the founder of the Center for Nonviolent Communication.  It was sitting at the foot of greatness.  I trained at the Effectiveness Training Institute of Australia and learned Dr. Gordon’s approach to parenting communication and problem solving. I met Dr. Louise Porter along the way and we went on to co-write over a year, along with another colleague, the Guidance Approach to Parenting that my 90 Day Parenting Reset is based on and that underpins the Conscious Parenting Revolution. 

Dr Alice Miller’s work, especially her book the Drama of the Gifted Child, changed my life and is a seminal work that contributed to my own healing in relation to my own childhood experiences and really helped me to understand the importance of letting our children separate and individuate.  She articulated my experience.  I actually speak about that in my TEDx From overriding my inner knowing to trusting myself | Katherine Winter-Sellery | TEDxGEM  

Alan Watts had a huge impact on my thinking, I fell into his work right after my sister died of a brain tumor at the end of my second year of law school.  It was the straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak. I had endured my brother’s death by suicide 10 years earlier in High School, which my family didn’t handle well or bring in any psychological support for us to process, and so it wouldn’t be until decades later that I would process it and then this.  I stepped away, moved to the cabin in the woods, cut wood/carried water, began to meditate on the spiritual questions of “what’s it all about Alfy”, grieved, started a Course in Miracles, and immersed myself in deep inquiry.  I look back at this time, Melanie’s early death at 36 was the greatest loss and it would become the greatest gift.  It was a life altering event.  It jolted me off of one path and literally put me on another.  Aside from Alan Watts I began reading Ramana Maharshi, Carl Jung, Debbie Ford, Eugene Gendlin, Ann Weiser Cornell, Helene Brenner, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Brene Brown.  

What inspires Katherine Winter – Sellery?  

Underdog stories to triumph against all the odds, random acts of kindness, courageous behaviors, books/movies like:  To Kill a Mockingbird, the Help, It’s a Wonderful Life, The Blind Side, expressions that reveal our goodness inside, that reveal how we all belong to one another, our shared humanity.  

For more information head over to Katherine Winter-Sellery’s website. 

After working 4 years as a reputed journalist, Jerome wanted to explore internet-based journalism. He brought together the idea of USA Reformer to dispatch news that serves the need of readers with perfect information. He also contributes as a business news writer for the website.

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