Interview Via Roma Khetarpal
She has gained worldwide recognition by calling for a radical restructuring of the parent-child relationship and was invited by Oprah to give her viewers a ‘Lifeclass’ on just that. She has been on Oprah’s: super soul Sunday and Super Soul Sessions for SuperSoul TV. Oprah herself has called her, “my favorite parenting expert” on several shows.
Dr. Shefali Tsabary is a world-renowned clinical psychologist who works with families. She specializes in the integration of Eastern philosophy and Western psychology, making her an expert in her field. Her message has the potential to change people’s lives for generations to come.
She is often asked to ‘fix a child’. But says it’s not the child that is ever the problem. It’s often parents who see their kids as subordinates and we parents she says, should really see our children as our teachers too. Masalamommas parenting expert, Roma Khetarpal recently had a chance to do a one-on-one interview with her about her journey with parents, parenting and her work on teaching parents to be ‘The Conscious Parent.’
She will also be in Toronto on Friday, June 24, discussing The Awakened Family, her latest book, at Indigo Yonge & Eglinton at 7pm.
What planted the seed for your focus on conscious parenting and inspired you to write The Conscious Parent?
The seed was my observation that despite the greatest love between parent and child, there was a great deal of dysfunction bred by parental unconsciousness. The Conscious Parent helps parents uncover the roots of their own unconsciousness, which then stops them from burdening their children with it.
There are many conscious and mindful parenting experts. What distinguishes your message?
My message focuses solely on the inner transformation of the parent, urging them to enter into a higher state of consciousness. Most other parenting books focus on “fixing” the child or “creating” the child to fit some idea the parent has of them.
What resistance did you face on this journey?
The resistance I face is only a disguise for fear. My message rings true for every parent. However, parents resist this truth due to their fear of looking in the mirror. It is not easy to look at oneself and take ownership for one’s role in the parenting process. It is very painful because, more often than not, it brings up one’s own past and one’s own unresolved issues.
Your book Out of Control seems to get the least attention. Do you feel parents are not ready to acknowledge the strength of its message?
Oh, yes, indeed. Out of Control is a powerful book that deals with the idea of discipline. Parents are hard pressed to give up the one free pass they have to control their children. That is why this book challenges them at every level. However, those who are further along this path of consciousness are able to delve in and understand the misguided beliefs around parental discipline and how toxic its roots are.
What was it like being on Oprah’s Life Class, and how did that opportunity come up?
Oprah invited me after she interviewed me for Super Soul Sunday, as she understood the power of this message for all parents.
You have started a Parenting Revolution with your new book, The Awakened Family. Why is a “revolution” necessary?
A revolution is necessary because the mainstream, traditional parenting paradigm doesn’t really work. It produces generations of anxious and stressed-out children and parents. It has created a generation of parents who believe childhood should be a project or, at worst, a career. When we turn children into puppets and objects of our fancy, we fail to tune into their essence. When they are disconnected from their essence they grow up lost and directionless. As adults, they then spend years trying to recover what they once had. It is a waste of time and energy, really. What if we didn’t have to go through this process of forgetting only to remember later on? What if we were allowed to stay connected to our essence in the first place? Wouldn’t that be amazing? This is the gift my book The Awakened Family offers parents: the opportunity to keep their children deeply connected to their essence so that they do not have to suffer the costs of being uprooted from it.
Watch Shefali on Oprah’s LifeClasson OWN:[vsw id=”ZsX6N94n74Y” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”344″ autoplay=”no”]
What do you remember about growing up as a South Asian female in India?
I remember being burdened by stereotypical and rigid archetypes of what it meant to be a “good” Indian woman. I grew up believing I could only be “compliant,” “dependent,” and “soft-spoken.” I thought adjectives such as those were the hallmark of a “good” human being. I found those definitions to be limited and suffocating. It was for these reasons that I had to leave my country and discover who I truly was.
More About Shefali’s Books:
Her latest book, THE AWAKENED FAMILY, gives us daily skills and tools to revolutionize our families and our parenting. This book holds the potential to liberate both your child and yourself from the clutches of anxiety leading you toward a transformed sense of peace and joy.
Her first book, THE CONSCIOUS PARENT, has been endorsed by Oprah as one of the most profound books on parenting she has ever read.
Her second book, OUT OF CONTROL, offers a unique and brilliant perspective on why traditional means of discipline don’t work with our children and what we should do instead.
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