Day 14 in our 30 Days to Transform Your Play series and it’s a good one! Today’s topic is something that is very dear to my heart, something that is so simple but can have an extraordinarily positive impact on your and your child’s sense of wellbeing and connectedness; today we are talking about ‘want nothing time’.
What is ‘want nothing time’?
“…when the parent doesn’t want to do anything with the [child], has no plans other than wanting simply to be with the child; just floor sitting, being available, being there with all senses awakened to the child; watching, listening, thinking only of that child…”
~ Magda Gerber – Dear Parent: Caring for Infants With Respect
I think so often we feel like we have to ‘do something’ when we are with our children; right, I’ve finished the washing, I’m here now. Let’s do something, when sometimes it is nice just to be with our children, just to sit and watch, play alongside and be there fully in the moment; not wanting anything, just being there.
It can be difficult; being fully there with our children, in body and mind; emptying our mind of all distractions. But when we sit with them, even for fifteen minutes, peacefully, asking nothing of them other than to be in their presence for a while, we are affirming a belief in our child that they are valued; that they are seen, not for what they can do for us in that moment but for who they are.
Schedule some ‘want nothing time’ in your day. Even if it’s just 15 minutes. 15 minutes to clear your mind of distractions and be fully present with your children.
Here’s some articles I thought you might enjoy.
- Magda Gerber’s Gift to Grown-ups: Parenting that engages the mind (from Janet Lansbury)
- Emptying our Minds in Order to be more Present with Babies (from Lisa Sunbury)
- Slowing Down Care Giving Moments to Encourage Independence in Toddlers (from Kate Russell – Peaceful Parents, Confident Kids)