The Reflective Parent

How to Do Less and Relate More with Your Kids

Regina Pally (Author)

Overview | Contents

An innovative parenting approach empowering parents to trust their instincts and embrace uncertainty.

Figuring out how to raise happy, healthy, and successful kids can be overwhelming. Parents find themselves wading through tons of conflicting advice. Books that outline a “right way” of doing things can leave even the most dedicated caregiver feeling discouraged and inadequate when real life doesn’t measure up.

An experienced psychiatrist and founder of the Center for Reflective Communities, Regina Pally serves up something totally different in her book. She argues that the key to successful parenting is learning to slow down, reflect, and recognize that there is no one key to doing it right.

The Reflective Parent synthesizes the latest in neuroscience research to show that our brain’s natural tendencies to empathize, analyze, and connect with others are all we need to be good parents. Each chapter weaves together discussions of specific reflective parenting principles like “Tolerate Uncertainty” and “Repair Ruptures” with engaging explanations of the science that backs them up. Brief “Take Home Lessons” at the end of each chapter and vivid examples of parents and children putting the principles into action make this a highly readable, practical guide for anyone looking to build loving, lasting relationships with their kids.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • February 2017
  • ISBN 978-0-393-71133-2
  • 6.5 × 9.6 in / 288 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

Endorsements & Reviews

“Psychiatrist Pally centers her gentle, thoughtful, and non-judgmental parenting approach around "reflective capacity"—the ability to understand other people's behaviors and responses as products of their internal mental states. By increasing empathy, she seeks to improve the central relationship between parent and child. . . . Pally guides parents on how to take on the adult responsibilities of setting boundaries while using reflection to adjust responses to the child's needs and perspective. At the end of each chapter she gives examples of things parents can say to children, which adds to the book's usability.” — Publishers Weekly

“[A] practical and easy-to-read guide for anyone looking to build stronger relationships with their children. . . . [T]hrough reflective and introspective processes backed by research and experience.” — Somatic Psychotherapy Today

“Every parent wants to be a good parent. But there is complexity at every turn. Regina Pally, a veteran parent and gifted clinician, has written the book we’ve been waiting for. She brings us back to basics: nurturing the relationship, listening, wondering, and mindfully trusting our instincts. This beautifully written, hugely readable, straightforward, very smart, and so helpful book is grounded in the science of relationships and contemporary theories of parent and child development yet it reads as if she’s having a conversation with us about everyday parenting, making sense of the journey and making it seem almost easy. For parents at all stages of child rearing, this book is truly a gift.” — Arietta Slade, Ph.D., Clinical Professor, Co-Director, Minding the Baby ®, Yale Child Study Center

“Regina Pally has harnessed the power of her brilliant and caring mind with a synthesis of rigorous scientific findings and proven parenting approaches. This book is a highly readable guide to a parent’s most important gift to their children, the ability to be present for who they are and to reflect on the inner mental lives that drive their behaviors. With accessible and practical suggestions for transforming your own reflective skills into daily interactions with your child and yourself, The Reflective Parent provides a powerful framework for supporting the healthy development of children of all ages.” — Daniel J. Siegel, MD, co-author of Parenting from the Inside Out and The Whole-Brain Child, Executive Director, Mindsight Institute

“In an age when parental anxiety is at an all-time high, Dr. Pally’s indispensable book supports parents and boosts their confidence. By teaching parents the skills to be reflective, Dr. Pally gives parents the greatest gift of all— the 'How To' of building a loving bond. Having a strong parent-child connection is at the heart of great parenting, and is the vehicle for raising kids who will thrive. This book is an extraordinary must- read guide for all parents aspiring to build a secure, healthy relationship with their child.” — Robin Berman, MD, Psychiatrist, Associate Professor, UCLA, author of Permission to Parent: How to Raise Your Child With Love and Limits

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