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Is the Minimalist Parenting Style Right For You?

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How many times have you heard that life will change after you have kids? Of course, you probably did not need to be told that having a helpless infant in your care would present new obstacles, but unsolicited advice is just one of those new additions to your life as a parent. What is less frequently warned about is how outside expectations of you can quickly add up into stressful complications. While there is no real-life spam filter, you can adopt the principles of the Minimalist Parenting Style to help you keep the focus on who you are and what matters most to your new, larger family.

What does it mean to be a Minimalist Parent?

“Being a minimalist parent is about really embracing the fact that there are certain things that matter to you. Not everything in the world has to be perfect in your life in order for you to be a perfect parent to your children,” says Asha Dornfest, co-author of Minimalist Parenting: Enjoy Modern Family Life More By Doing Less.

Your priorities may change as a parent, but know that it’s okay if your personal interests don’t. As much as you love and cherish your new bundle of joy, you don’t have to take on an entirely new lifestyle based on what other people think a parent should do.

But how do you go about that, exactly?

Start by identifying the things that really matter to you most. What do you enjoy or excel at that you would be happy to teach or take part in with your child?

“I know for me, I am not a particularly crafty parent. I just am not. I’m not doing art projects with my kids. I’m not making homemade this and that. I know a lot of people really love to do that and so for them it’s a great use of their time. For me, it’s not,” explains Dornfest, founder of award-winning website Parent Hacks.

Drop the guilt

Despite how that may sound at first, it’s not a selfish approach to parenting. In fact, it’s a method of creating more time and energy for your family to focus on your own unique interests. Worrying about how other parents spend their Saturday afternoons will only cause undue stress, and trying to incorporate them into your schedule will take up valuable time.

Dornfest says she has learned to let go of the guilt by understanding that she has her own unique gifts to share with her children.

You + Baby

The biggest tip Dornfest offers for being a minimalist parent is to know that you can be comfortable being who you are for your children.

“If you are a playful person, be playful with your kids. If you’re a strict person, that’s okay too,” says Dornfest.

Successful parenting stems from an adult who loves and cares for their child in a way that is comfortable, readable, and enjoyable for the whole family. For some families, this is accomplished with the minimalist parenting style.


For more on the Minimalist Parenting Style, check out expert tips on how to Simplify a Hectic Family Life.


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