'Slow parenting' doesn't sound like the most exciting way to prepare your little hurricane for the world around her, but the phrase might not mean what you think! ‘Slow parenting’ is actually a parenting trend that was sparked by Carl Honoré’s 2009 book, Under Pressure: Rescuing Our Children from the Culture of Hyper-Parenting. The book, and the parenting style it recommends, emphasizes less scheduling, less focus on ‘milestones,’ and more focus on play and relaxation time for you, your family, and your baby.
Have you noticed parents around you who sign their kids up for enough classes that their day-to-day schedule can start to feel a little hectic? Have you ever worried that you might be one of them? Many parents believe activities that start to cause stress can take the attention off more meaningful moments in life. The concept of ‘slow parenting’ is designed to let children develop at their own pace and have more natural interactions with the world around them. Slow parenting as it pertains to babies involves getting rid of activities, packed schedules, and the excessive concern over when your baby reaches certain developmental milestones, and whether or not she is ‘advanced.’
Slow parenting is meant to lower stress - stress that, in reality, may not need to be the norm. There may always be tots who can speak French and do splits on a gymnastics bar, and you may not want completely unstructured play for your child. But there’s definitely a happy medium with space in between schedules for freedom, learning, and growth. No matter what you choose, it never hurts to be reminded to take a moment to enjoy your baby's babyhood. It doesn’t last forever, and it’s the unplanned moments that will stay with you as your baby grows.