An Attentive Pause

Hello friends

You may or may not have noticed that it has gone a bit quiet here. And the plan is that it will stay that way at least until the new year.

I found this gorgeous quote from Mary Oliver recently:

β€œTen times a day something happens to me like this – some strengthening throb of amazement – some good sweet empathic ping and swell. This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.”

The soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.

A few weeks ago, I received the same piece of parenting advice twice, first from this podcast, and then on a handout forwarded by my own wise mama. But before it got to me the second time, I had already implemented it.

The wisdom is this: to help your children be well-behaved (due to greater peace and confidence I guess?) spend a bit of time each day being completely engaged with each child, playing and listening and conversing with your whole self. With no distractions.

The soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.

Be fully present to each child individually for at least ten minutes every day.

Wow. What a gift. They love it. It is precious. And I can actually do something achievable towards a top, yet slightly nebulous, priority.

Yes, it can at times feel like one more job, another hassle to squeeze in after school. But I come away from the time feeling closer to the child, knowing what’s on his mind and understanding more deeply how he works. My soul is built up. Their souls are built up. Is there anything of greater value?

After Christmas my littlest starts preschool and I will have more time to invest in this blog and podcast.

Until then, it will be quiet here. I will be mulling and praying over the way forward for this space.

More importantly, I will be spending my time and energy building souls, being attentive to those closest to me. I sincerely hope you have the opportunity to do the same.

With much love to you all

6 thoughts on “An Attentive Pause

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  1. Scientists and early childhood psychologists now explain to us that when we are attentive to a child by taking time to listen with empathy, love, interest and humor, cells in a particular part of their brain light up. Pathways are created as his or her emotional intelligence is “swelling” with growth. This is soul work with our children. When the soul is attended to, it can more naturally attend to others. Taking time with a child will pay deep dividends for their sense of self which will naturally impact future relationships. Jesus knew this and welcomed them to come to him, “for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven”.

  2. Hey Lissy, I will miss your podcasts, but whilst I have other resources, your lovely boys have only one mama πŸ™‚ Good call to make the most of this special time before January. And I can’t believe it is that time already! It doesn’t seem that long ago we had that garden centre lunch when you were expecting.

    I listened to that podcast last week too! And I’m half way through a book along similar lines that I think you might like….will pass it on when I’m done.

    Every blessing to all of you as you enjoy your family time, making connections and memories.

  3. Great call Lissy! May this time bear fruit for you and yours. And I look forward to the podcasts starting up again in a different chapter. Attentively waiting πŸ™‚

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