This is a book about a journey that began with a parent and a child and the powerful natural connection between them, singular in its fierceness, instinctive protectiveness, and potentially one of the deepest forms of love. I hope to reveal to you how I found an innovative way to parent my child so he would experience an extraordinary life, and to show you how you can do the same.
The journey begins with parenting, but it’s also about healing: healing for those who are not just parents or children; healing for anyone who wants a better life. It includes a daily healing process, for those who no longer want to settle for less than the best life has to offer, and for those who are tired of searching—but not finding—answers that will guide them to live the lives they want to live.
I was a divorced single mother on welfare when I chose to assume the sole guardianship of my young son. Within me burned a deep passion to cultivate the best in him, so he’d have the skills and tools to create the kind of life for himself he dreamed of living. I wanted this for his children, too—empowering a new generation of people ready to face any economic, social, political, and environmental challenges that beset us in this 21st century, and any unknown challenges of the future.
In searching for answers, I stumbled upon a way to do exactly this. It became so incredibly exciting, so powerful and yet so natural, that my son’s upbringing became a work of art.
My son’s subsequent success as a young businessman and as a contributor to other people’s lives led me to broaden my outreach. I now hope to reach not only parents and guardians who have the delicate and sacred charge of helping shape a child’s life, but also grandparents who co-parent, and anyone else eager to contribute their gifts to change the world for the better. By embracing this journey, anyone can truly experience the simultaneous miracle of amplifying their own spiritual capacities by achieving the self- fulfillment and joy that comes from helping others. I sincerely want you to be able to experience this, too.
Through the incredible voyage of mentoring my son, my surprise gift has been the revelation of the most expansive version of myself and my son—as we navigated through the rich labyrinth of our lives together.
Many years after I developed this system, I was delighted and deeply gratified to learn of the breakthrough research of Dr. Robert Epstein, one of the world’s leading psychologists and former editor of Psychology Today magazine.
At the 2010 annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Dr. Epstein gave the results of his study involving over 2,000 parents. The outcome of this critical, groundbreaking report was validated by elaborate statistical analysis and by the review of over 50 prior studies on this subject to refine the research methodology used by Dr. Epstein and his team, in order to arrive at the best possible ways to investigate this crucial topic with absolute accuracy.
Of the top three factors linked to successful parenting, two of them were not solely related to what the parent does or says to the child. Instead, they consisted of the parent incorporating the following into all aspects of his or her life—not just parenting:
a. Well-developed stress management abilities, and
b. Good relationship skills. The single most important factor of the three—giving the child lots of love and affection—will obviously be a difficult challenge for the parent to consistently provide if the parent isn’t competent in stress management and good relationship skills.
Dr. Epstein’s research discovered that, unfortunately, most parents are decidedly substandard in these areas. The system provided in this book will change that factor, empowering you as a parent to raise the bar in these and other critical areas of everyday life. As a result, when you choose this method, you will ultimately raise extraordinary children who will be empowered to make positive choices and who will experience extraordinary lives; the lives they were meant to live.
From the book Mentoring Your Child to Win. Copyright 2013 by Arlene Karian. Published by LifePath Books. Karian, a local author, uses the same method that lifted her out of poverty to help women who want to move to the next level of their lives,