Friday, January 18, 2013
Wanna know a little secret?
We purchased Brian, our money pit cockapoo (cocker-poodle mix), a few years ago on a Craig's list like website. According to its previous owner, our "used" dog is a puppy mill rescue that ended up being badly treated by her husband who didn't like four legged creatures.
Therefore, we found ourselves with a super cute dog with its share of physiological (and physical but this is another story) problems. Next thing you know, we watched every freaking episode of the Dog Whisperer (dog "psychology" trainer) with a note book in hand trying to figure out how to help our "canine son".
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When reading parental books, names like Dr. Sears, Tracy Hogg, Rudolf Steiner, Dr. Spock, Jean Piaget, Maria Montessori, etc. are common sources of information. To be honest, I don't read those books because I need guidance. I still trust my "mom instinct" and know that I'm the expert regarding Alice's education because each child is unique and doesn't fit in any pre-established mold. I read those books, even those that are against my personal values, because I simply find them interesting from a psychological point of view.
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That being said, after almost two years with a kiddo, if you were going to ask me who is my main parental influence, I would without hesitation tell you... Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer!
Cesar Millan didn't invent anything new. He just became famous by applying some VERY BASIC psychology principles (hello Maslow's hierarchy of needs) to dog training...principles that can obviously be applied to toddlers:
Fulfill the physical requirements of the body
(exercise, play, restful sleep, healthy diet, "work" - Alice loves doing simple chores)
Fulfill the psychological requirements of the mind
(structure, direction and positive discipline - rules, routines, rituals)
Fulfill the spiritual requirements of the soul
(love, affection, safety, attachment)
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I didn't write this silly post to create "controversy". I'm obviously aware that toddlers are a bit more complex than puppies, duh!
This post is actually a reminder (for me and, why not, for some readers) that sometimes, by over analyzing our every parental / child move, we create problems that are not even there and forget that simplicity is often key.
note 1: Yes, I'm strange!!!
note 2: I don't know where I found this awesome quote...sorry.