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3 Questions with Brittany Polat
“Tranquility Parenting: A Guide to Staying Calm, Mindful, and Engaged.”
Polat encourages parents to find engaged contentment as they learn to stay calm, deal with problems, reduce negative emotions, and truly enjoy being with their children. By applying the ancient Greek philosophy of Stoicism, this approach to parenting can help parents and their children discover the path to flourishing.
In this Q&A, we asked Brittany 3 questions for our readers to get a glimpse behind the scenes.
1) Why did you write the book and what do you hope readers take away from it?
A few years ago I had never heard of Stoicism, and learning about it had such a huge, positive impact on my life. I want to spread the word as widely as possible so that it will be accessible to all parents. My hope is that even if readers don’t become hardcore Stoics, they will take away at least a few ideas that will make a difference in their own lives. I think the process of clarifying your parenting philosophy and being very intentional in your actions is valuable in and of itself.
2) When you were writing your book, what was your biggest challenge?
I wrote the book as a stay-at-home mom with three small children, so just finding time to write was a significant challenge! But I discovered that whenever I sat down to write, it forced me to think carefully about my own parenting, and as a result I became a better parent. I hope my readers find that taking a little time to read and reflect will help them become better parents, too.
3) What was your favorite book (or two) of last year?
I really enjoyed “The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives,” by William Stixrud and Ned Johnson. Their vision and experiences fit very well with Stoic parenting, especially the idea that you can’t (and shouldn’t try to) control your child. Instead, we should guide our children in the ways they need it, and allow them to explore things and learn for themselves.
Another book I learned a lot from is “Innate: How the Wiring of Our Brains Shapes Who We Are,” by Kevin J. Mitchell. I think most parents are interested in the nature versus nurture debate, and this book confirms our suspicions that there is not much we can do to change our children’s personality traits. But it’s also a celebration of individual differences. Instead of trying to change our kids and other loved ones, we should value them for who they are. What a great reminder for all of us!
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