I heard about the book Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt from Tim Ferriss's podcast with Julie Rice, the co-founder of SoulCycle. On the podcast, she talked about the book as having helped her learn about "fostering a company culture and a family life ... that make conflict resolution go smoothly and constructively." Given that I'm interested in both good company culture and family life, I decided to check it out.
There were certainly parts that I wasn't into, like the sales-y references to all the commercial international "Imago" training workshops and the various religious undertones throughout. However, there were also many parts that made me think and consider how its lessons may apply to my life. One core message in the book is that one's upbringing as a child and unmet childhood needs carry over into one's selection of partner and one's conflict tendency (basically, your subconscious recreating the unresolved situations from childhood).
While that kind of thing may seem Freudian or annoying/strange in one way, I do see the validity of many of the ideas firsthand and in relationships I've thought about. Certainly its lessons around how to begin a productive adult dialogue with a partner, discuss behavior change, and discuss one's needs are very useful. The concept of "graduated change" was also a good framework.
Below are my full takeaways from the book.
A local parenting author I've been following came out with a book recently giving very tactical advice on dealing with everyday situations and what kind of language can be most effective and respectful. I finally got a chance to read it and really enjoyed it: Now Say This: The Right Words to Solve Every Parenting Dilemma by Heather Turgeon and Julie Wright.
It read like a combination of RIE-inspired philosophy applied to daily situations. Half the scripts/examples sounded just like the best preschool teachers and directors I've seen in action and heard "in the field." Going through this book gave me a really good mindset for how to generate my own ways of saying the main ideas. I also found the ALP approach (Attune, Limit Set, Problem Solve) to be applicable to so many situations (in parenting and outside it).
I highly recommend this book to any parent. Probably in the top 5 parenting books I've ever read.
My notes on the biggest takeaways and example scripts are below. The book is filled with so many more details and example scripts and conversations.
I just finished reading Duct Tape Parenting by Vicki Hoefle, and it's probably the best parenting book I've read in about a year. Such a wake-up call and such a dead-on diagnosis of problems I've personally experienced.
The title sounds silly, but so many friends and authors I respect recommended it to me, so I checked it out. The title comes from the core strategy: putting duct tape over your mouth and hands to stop yourself from nagging/directing/commenting on/fixing your child's problems. It focuses on training and relationship strategies rather than "band aid techniques" (e.g., nagging/time-outs) for treating bullet wounds (severe training and relationship deficiencies).
I found a lot of value in the examples of how parents applied the ideas in the book to their lives. I also liked the detailed training roadmap that goes through the life skills and social skills kids should master at each age level in order to be ready to be independent by age 18.
I highly recommend this and wish I found it sooner. Now I just need to go get some duct tape....
See below for my full notes on the book.