Empowerment Parenting

6 July, 2013

I’ve been thinking a lot about differing parenting styles, apparent in children in the playground and at parties.  Sometimes it feels like we’re inundated with the selfy-helpy world of how-to-bring-up-your-kids. Having spent thousands of hours on facebook, er, researching child rearing, one day it struck me, I finally realised where I had been going wrong.  It was one of those “aha” moments, that changes your life forever.   Having tried my new approach out on more than two children, I can honestly say it’s totally amazing and it will change your life too.  I call it the GeddityerselfTM method.

There are only two rules in GeddityerselfTM parenting.  But they must be followed at all times.  They are:

  1. Say no to “no”.  Yes, that’s right we say no to saying no and we say yes to saying yes.  We never ever say yes to saying no.  No, we’d never do that.  So if your child asks for something, you always say “Yes”.  You can choose to that with an endearing term such as  “darling”, “sweet child of mine,” or for a teenager, “mummy’s lickle lamb” (always goes down a treat).
  1. The second rule is that you always follow that “yes” with our second foundation mantra; Geddityerself TM.

This works with children of all ages.  Here are a few examples;

Child:  “Mum, can I have a drink?”
Mum:  “Yes darling.  Geddityerself TM

Teenager:  “Mum, can I have a car?”
Mum:  “Yes, Geddityerself TM.”

Child:  Can I have lunch?
Mum:  “Yes, my love.  Geddityerself TM.”

Child:   “Can I have an allowance?”
Mum:  “Yes, my lickle lamb. Gedditoffyourdad.”

The sceptics amongst you might be thinking, but does this really work in real life?  Here are just a few of the many thousands of letters I receive everyday, from ordinary people, just like you.  The one thing they have in common is they have changed their lives, and the lives of their children, for the better using the Geddityerself TM  method.

“We were on our way to leave our seven children with social services one weekend, when we heard about your Geddityerself TM parenting method. Your blog was a turning point in our lives. These days, we all live as one big happy family.  Honestly, we can’t thank you enough.”
John & Olivia Walton, West Virginia, USA

“GeddityerselfTM parenting is a work of great emotional depth.  It challenges the holes in the fabric of redundant ideals of the western parental system.  I am in no doubt that I have been a better parent to little Sergey, Tatyana, Ilya, Leo, Marya, Petya, Nicholas, Varvara, Andrey, Michael, Sascha and Alexis since studying it.  Oh, and my wife, Sacha is getting on much better Timmy, my illegitimate child now.  (Although, she’s still a bit frosty with his mother).
Leo Tolstoy, Russia

“Fantastic!  You deserve a prize.”
A. Nobel, Stockholm

“Your gas bill is now overdue and requires immediate payment.”
British Gas, FTSE 100 Company, UK

Buy the Geddityerself TM Approach today for £199.99

While stocks last!

“The pressures of parenting and money meant my husband and I were both working second jobs, to make ends meet. We couldn’t cope. With the help of Gettidyerself parenting, I gave up my evening job as a prostitute and my husband stopped dealing crack on weekends. Instead, we spend our free time running happily through flower meadows, like other families. Thank you so much.”

Disclaimer:  Due to unprecedented demand, the Gettidyerself TM method has, er, completely sold out in all leading bookstores and on Amazon.

Copies are still available at the Wednesday market in Witney.  (Cash only)

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Wembley Great Hall, 1st and 2nd Oct 2011

You’ve probably heard of Paul McKenna (McK) right, but might not have heard of Richard Bandler.  He’s something of a big guru in the world of NLP and hypnosis.  A controversial character for many reasons, none of which I can be bothered to bitch on about here.  His innovative techniques for phobias, metaphorical language and personal change, I’ve used with success.  I’ve never seen him because his training seminars are way out of my price range.  I have read some of his books one of which “A Guide to Trance-formation” I rate highly as a guide to learning hypnosis – if you ever want to.  Overall, I didn’t really know what to think, other than he’s got quite a dedicated fan club who dangle on his every hypnotic syllable (eugh).  So when the chance to see him for two days for £188 arrived in my inbox I took it, well I bought it from NLP Life actually.  Most of his training seminars cost thousands of pounds to attend (hence I haven’t done any of them) and this seemed (comparatively) a good deal.

In terms of “getting the life I wanted”, well when I booked this seminar I have to admit I didn’t really think that was something I particularly needed.  I’ve been feeling pretty happy with my life for a while now.  I do struggle to understand the pseudo spiritual culture rife at the moment like “The Secret” where the goal of life is – getting what you want.  If I was leading a seminar it would be called “Want the life you’ve already got” (and no one would come).  The real “secret” of a lot of this bull is about giving people unattainable dreams and then convincing them they can have them.  Then if they aren’t able to attain that dream (because it’s totally unrealistic and implausible and unachievable) then the problem is that they didn’t “believe” in it enough to make it happen.  So it’s their own stupid fault they’ve failed again.  I think there are kinder ways of seeing the world than this.  To be honest, I think it’s probably better for people if you just cut out the middle bit and told them at the start that the “Secret” is it’s all their own fault.  I think if you did it in a slightly mystical way with some soft music and a faraway look in your eye then it could be really effective.  I’ll try it out on people over the next couple of weeks and let you know how it goes.  Maybe in the playground, next time one of my mum chums comes to complain about her husband leaving dirty clothes on the bathroom floor, I can go into a slightly altered state and tell her that I “feel” (because a lot of this stuff runs on how we “feel” about things), yes, I feel that ultimately she is creating this situation and that only she can resolve it (because there is no longer any such thing as “fault” only incomplete solutions).

Ok, so you can see that I wasn’t the most ideal candidate for this seminar, but by the time it actually came round, I have to say I was feeling pretty uncertain about some of the decisions I was making about my future.  I’d lost my mojo somewhere around early August and blamed it on six weeks of holidays with my three darlings at home (what to speak of two weeks in a tent with them).  But it wasn’t really true, I had properly lost my mojo and didn’t know where or how to get it back.  I was happy enough, but just not as sparkly as I normally feel.  For example, I’d look at my blog and just not write it, even though I used to love it.  So I was sort of curious by the time it came round to see if it would help me, or if it would fill me with impossible dreams and then leave me on Sunday evening, waiting for a tube in the rain with big fantasy umbrella keeping me dry – if you know what I mean.

The first thing about the seminar that made a real impression on me was that McK opened it alone.  Yep, Bandler hadn’t bothered to get out of bed for 1,300 people (at an average price of £270 pp).  Unbelievable.  None of the “Hi, it’s like really lovely of you all to be here, this is gonna be so fabulous” etc etc ad nauseum.  I had to admit I sort of liked it him for it.  I mean how many of us sit through all sorts of shite just for the social nicety of it all.  Bandler didn’t.  I think I was envious as I was sitting through yet another McK enactment of his dream life as Sean Connery.  (He obviously hasn’t seen Megamind yet).

McKenna smoking during the break

McKenna smoking during the break

I think it went a bit like this the night before:

Bandler:  “Fuck it, McKenna you do the fucking morning, I’m not getting out of bed and driving all the way to fucking Wembley till I’ve had my fucking brunch.”

McK: “Er, ok, I’ll warm them up using my rather fabulous James Bond persona.  The natural charm and confidence I adopt will spread good feelings through the audience and……”

Bandler (interrupting) : “Do what the fuck you like, make them cluck like fucking chickens but don’t expect me there before 3pm”.

McKenna: “Ok M, leave it to me, ”.

Bandler: “What did you fucking call me?”

McK : “Nothing”

So McKenna did the morning.

Now I have to say I’ve seen McK a few times in the past.  The first time I saw him he was in a really bad mood.  I don’t know what was up with him – he was living the Bond life he wanted after all. Wearing a Bond suit, telling the time on a Bond watch, driving a Bond car, planning his career with a real life Money Penny;  and dating Bond girls – who turn in psychos and stab him in the back – hey what more could a guy want?  Anyway, I went to his I can make you thin event a few times, I bought tickets, I won tickets, I couldn’t get away.  And I couldn’t get thin either.

Ok, so let’s get back to Bandler, when he eventually got up and had brunch (he’s American and I believe they all have brunch every day; then hot dogs with yellow mustard in the afternoon when they’re doing their police jobs; then they have dinner somewhere swanky in the evening. Trust me, I’ve seen it ont’elly).  He managed to spur himself towards our event and arrive mid afternoon.  No rush, no rush.  Then he proceeded to tell outrageously funny (and seemingly embellished) stories of inventive therapy sessions he’d conducted.  Couldn’t help but like his stories and his irreverential style.  During all this he was spinning something called “nested loops”.  It’s a hypnotic technique where you begin a story and then digress with another story, and another etc building different levels within each story.  Then you do some subliminal work on the clients (us) and close the stories one by one in the right order.  Well, that’s how Bandler teaches it, but it’s certainly not how he does it himself.  I have to say many of the loops were not closed and I have no idea what the hell he was doing with them all over the place.  But I sure felt good by the end of the day and felt like he actually gave a shit about people’s mental well being.  This was also reflected in the imaginative and kind work he did with people on the stage.  Humble he is not, but skilled he certainly is.

On the second day there was an interesting exercise with McK where we looked at our values and from there our goals (yes, yawn, is there anyone who hasn’t done that a thousand times before), but then we put them on a time line and played around with them on there.  A timeline is an imaginary line depicting your life in chronological time.  You can move stuff around on it, change things and do interesting stuff with it therapeutically.  Anyway, eventually we went to the end of our lines (metaphorically our old age) and looked back over the part we’d been planning with our values etc and checked we were happy with it.  McK, then asked a few people in the audience about theirs.  Now a lot of the audience were NLPers (you can tell cos they look like estate agents.  “Height phobia Madam? I want you to imagine yourself in a low lying bungalow in Southend, feel how big the rooms are, notice how small and grey the price appears, would you like a viewing?”).  So, from the audience we got all the typical  I want, I want, I wants.  There were famous writers, famous musicians, famous filmmakers and famous photographers (notice a theme anyone?). Fine.

But as I looked down my own timeline there wasn’t anything famous on it.  I saw myself responsibly bringing up three children on my own, who I love.  I saw myself working as a hypnotherapist, which I love.  And I saw myself spending an inordinate amount of time getting a science degree from the Open University, which I will love.  Nothing sexy, glamorous, award winning, rich or famous along this line.  But as I looked back from my old age perspective I felt an incredibly powerful sense of well being, I felt the reward of being responsible to my children, the joy of helping people with their problems and the challenge of study.  And I felt an incredible sense of simple satisfaction that I’d spent those years of my life on those things.  And to be honest, there’s something a bit priceless about feeling that good about the life you’re living; the one you’re already actually living, not an imaginary life that you wish you had.  And right at that moment, I realized I’d found my mojo again.

Paul McKenna

Richard Bandler

The other good news is that I’ve picked up my blog and started writing (obviously) and begun to manically walk everywhere I go.  I’ve stopped over-eating and one week after the seminar have lost 5lbs.  I have also more strangely found myself doing stomach crunches at 5am in the living room before going back to bed (!!). I don’t know if it was Bandler or McK, but I have to say, I’m really glad I went along.

Bye xx

Flying Friars

26 January, 2010

It’s been a while since I posted.  Basically what happened is that the computer said no, and I said the f. word.  Eventually, an acer netbook came along as an early birthday present (thanks so much mum) and so the laptop has been well and truly dumped.   By that I mean,  dumped on the kitchen floor for now.   Sometimes, I wonder if I should apply for funding as a landfill site with the amount of shite that piles up in this house.  Where oh where does it come from?

That aside, this xmas has brought some real wonders into our home.  Prize for the best present ever given to us by anyone, goes to Dhira and Libby for the camping ice cream ball.  It’s amazing, I cant tell you how well this thing performs.  It’s basically a football that makes ice cream.  It’s a bright blue hard plastic ball with an opening at each end.  At one opening there is a vacuum type flask which you fill with milk, sugar, and in our case, blended up After Eights.  At the bottom of the ball is another opening, in here you put ice and rock salt which surround the flask bit and freeze your ingredients without touching them..  You roll the ball around on the floor for ten minutes (although the instructions tell you it will take 1/2 an hour – it’s not true).  Then you scrape the frozen ice cream off the insides of the flask, mix it a  bit and it all becomes soft scoop After Eight ice cream.  It is truly amazing and I’ve already bought one for someone else, which proves how great I think it is.

Second on the brill present list goes to Sandy for the Light Saver torch she gave Sami.  As soon as Sami opened it, Asha ran over, grabbed it from and said “mine”.  I have even found myself playing at turning it on and off, just to hear that exciting light saver noise.
But there are two books that entered our house recently that i want to share with, well, with anyone who reads this.  They are,  Whittaker’s World of Facts, which I gave Sami for Xmas.  And secondly, the Tashcen book on Gaudi, which was a present from Sakti and Phil.  I have to say that one of these has provided me with real creative insight.  It’s really blown my mind with the breadth of imagination involved.  Truly awe-inspiring.  I can’t wait to share it with you and then later I’ll write about the Gaudi book too.

I’ve heard that there are a lot of fact shows on TV at the moment, so I’m not going to compete with them and list loads of great Whittaker’s World facts for you.  No, sorry, beg me all that you want, but I’m not doing it.  However, I will tell you my favourite fact of all in this book.  It is the story of The Flying Friar, St. Joseph of Copertino (1603-63).

Now according to the book, many christian saints have had the ability to fly (er, sorry??), but St Joe was the most famous of them all (er, like he had the X-factor when it came to flying around the place).  He was an Italian Franciscan friar and he began to levitate in 1630.  Often it would be during religious services and once he performed it for the Pope Urban VIII.

Now my very first question on this matter has to be; did eight Popes really called themselves Pope Urban?  And were they into rap rather than gregorian chants?  Does that explain why there is so much bling in the Catholic tradition?  I have to admit I feel a little misled by the prudishness of the modern church, in light of these cool Popes and I’m not even Catholic.   Imagine if the current Pope, who  is called something like Pope Holyboringness WWE, had called himself Pope Urban X, how cool would that have been?  Then we would have quotes from the church which instead of saying; “And almighty god did smite the sinners with an almighty smiting curse.  And this smiting, curse did fall on every sinner who sinned or even made a mistake in life, even if it was just once and an accident, for almighty god said, “The sins of the sinner will come to bear down heavily on his children  on his children’s children’s children, for ever and ever.  Thanks be to god, Amen”  Under Pope Urban we’d have; “You’d better get your sick ass down to da church, or you is dead, man”.  Or “You’d better pray you dont do no sins, cos Jesus don’t never forget”.   And “Get me some more bling in these here churches and some sheepskin rugs, for Jesus is da shepherd and da king of kings.  Respect..”

Um, so where was I?  Fascinating facts, the Flying Friar took flight in front of Pope Urban VIII.  Now I’m wondering what the Pope had to say about this.  Significantly, flying it seems was a fairly common thing for Friars to do at that time, but not such a common thing for Popes to do.   I think it went a bit like this;

The Vatican

(Pope) Urban X:  I has heard you is gonna do some flyin’.  Show your stuff my humble holy man.

Flying Friar (FF):  Flaps his hands gently at the side of his body and takes off lightly from the ground.  “Try  it Your Most Holy Popeyness.  It’s easy, just flap you hands and think of your favourite things.  (FF starts to sing to himself), “Big holy bibles, tied up with string, this is just one of my favourite things.  When god’s hand  smites, or hell fires light, and I’m feeling sad, I simply remember to flap my hands like mad, and then I don’t feel, soo bad”.

Urban X: “Easy ya say?” (Pope flaps hands and makes a straining sound)

Bishop  no 1: “Your holymagnificentness, should I fetch the holy chamber pot”

Urban X: “What you talkin ’bout, Flying Friar?  Dis aint no easy shit.”

Bishop no 1: “I’ll bring some prune juice too, your prayerfulness.  Wont be long”  (bishop 1, hurries away)

FF:   I just think of Jesus as the wind beneath my wings.

Urban X:   You don’t have no wings, fool.

FF:  Perhaps if you removed those heavy gold chains and the thick signet rings and put the mitre down and cast the thick brocade clothing aside, then you might find it a bit easier to rise up?  (Saying this, FF gently floats up to the top of the vatican dome).

Urban X: No way man, them is part of the job.  You aint never gonna get me in no open-toe sandals. Jesus, what you on?”

FF: “Your holiness, your holiness” FF starts shouting with uncontrolled excitement

Urban X: “Friar, what the holy heck is going on here ?  You having visions or something ?”

FF: “Your holiness you’ll never believe it – it’s a miracle, that which  I have seen”

Urban X: “Now you really freakin’ me out”  (He gropes around in his robe for a rosary and finds on made of rubies strung together)  “Tell me Friar, just what it is?”

FF: “Your Holypopeyness, I can see my church from here”.

Back to the facts:  The Flying Friar was also known for carrying other friars on his back and performed over a 100 flights.  The flying Friar is the Patron Saint of pilots, astronauts and air travellers.  Satan is the patron saint of Ryan Air.

So, that’s just one of the fascinating facts from this wonderful book.  Rest assured, if you have any fascinating questions and you would like some help answering them, then please do drop me a line and ask.  I will be more than happy to look them up for you (after Sami is asleep I can steal it from his bedroom). Ask away……