June 21, 2021

Living the Good Life

Living the good life is a process, not a state of being―says the late psychologist Carl Rogers. In other words, human existence is less a journey to a specific destination and more of an ongoing process of growing and discovering that never ends. His view is that to enjoy the good life, we must embrace these five concepts:

  • Be fully open to experience
  • Live in the present moment
  • Trust ourselvesDMG-121212-LSP-3685054
  • Take responsibility for our choices
  • Treat ourselves and others with unconditional positive regard

Rogers believed that when we remain open to our experiences (without our rigid preconceptions) we are adopting a healthy way of being that prevents us from being stuck and feeling trapped. If we hang on to our ideas of how things should be, instead of accepting how they really are, we are unlikely to be able to find natural and healthy ways to meet our needs with what the world has to offer. Hence, we have difficulty trusting ourselves or others. So, when the world doesn’t do what we want, and we are unwilling to change our ideas, conflict arises in the form of our defensiveness.

How is this related to the Power Parent? As parents we may be inadvertently teaching our children that they are worthy of our and others affection only if they perform in a specific way. That an “A” in math, playing the right sport, having the right friends or even behaving up to our standards is the requirement or the “conditions of worth.” Achievements are to be respected and they are earned, but they are subordinate or “secondary” to acceptance, which is always a basic human need and  is everyone’s right.

Let me encourage you to teach your children, through your open communication and your consistent behavior, that you will always accept them and believe in them regardless of their performance or achievement. This will be the gift that allows them to trust themselves and others and to be flexible in seeing multiple options for growth and problem solving. Give your children the gift that teaches them how to keep “living the good life.”

Your thoughts and comments are very important to me. Until next time…Claim your power and expand your dreams!

Dr. B

About Dr. B

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  1. Living in the present moment is such a valuable life tool, I am discoverning this after spending too many years being more concerned about tomorrow…
    I especially appreciate your comments about giving your children the gift that teaches them how to keep “living the good life.” I heard a story on NPR yesterday about an 11 year old boy who staged his own kidnapping rather than face his parents about his bad grades.

    Congratulattions on your new book.

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