Zen Parenting + Pop Culturing

Podcast Archive

We discuss how feeling “bad”, whether it’s emotional or physical, is actually not so bad. Should grief be a diagnosable disorder or is it normal human emotion? Movie quotes from Airplane, Talladega Nights, and Billy Madison Talking about patience as a virtue and Todd Todd sings “Patience” (G n Roses a cappella) Time Stamp .30 Looking at your kids illness differently 1:58 11 Things I wish every parent knew by Stephen Cowan 2:24 A symptom ...
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Brene Brown’s definition of Critical Awareness and dealing with our constant need to be productive. Time Stamp 2:20 Critical awareness 4:08 Body Image 10:03 Todd’s no shower story 15:15 Categorize and differentiating children’s fears 19:10 Addicted to productivity 28:38 Debate on different definitions of meditation 33:03 #4 & #5- from Things I wish every parent knew 39:30 Kids are your your spiritual teachers 45:04 Tournament of Bad Give us a review on iTunes and receive ...
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Topics: We discuss the problems with society’s version of  masculinity vs. the hopes we have  for our sons. We also discuss a few of the 11 things one doctor wished every parent knew. The Mask You Live In Trailer 11 Things I wish Every Parent Knew Time Stamp: 1:05 Redefining Masculinity 2:38 Be U- Helping Children Become Emotionally Intelligent Leaders 5:15 Clip #1 from The Mask You Live In- society’s stereo-types of what it means to ...
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Topics: The Science of happiness, fathers who expect more from their sons, and using medical marijuana for sick kids We discuss two videos regarding the science of happiness: 4:24 The Science of Happiness 7:41 Showing gratitude is one of the keys to happiness (Soul Pancake Video) 8:45 Different ways to show gratitude without the guilt 9:30 Bon Jovi Concert Review 11:27 Tom Shadyac– Figure out what you do best and make that your way of giving ...
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Turning your children’s failures into positive experience, When children blur the lines between fact and opinion and how we can help them.  If you want to make your life less chaotic, then you need to make a shift in your perceptions.  We discuss what imaginal cells are in a butterfly and how we can learn from them. Both how it affects our own life as well as how we’re connected to one another.  We get ...
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The word you need to incorporate into your parenting- “WAIT”.  On todays show we discuss the following blog which can be found here. An excerpt from this blog… Parents need to slow down, stop comparing, and wait. This word, “wait,” is used too rarely in today’s frenetic lifestyle. Magda Gerber, a renowned child therapist and infant specialist, considered waiting to be a fundamental part of her child care philosophy. Parents don’t wait for their babies ...
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We discuss the story about a mom “spy” who told her 12 year old daughter she could spend time with her her friends, but also said she had to stay within a designated area. If she left the area, she was supposed to call her mom and let her know. The mom dropped off her daughter and then pulled the car around the block and parked out of sight so she “spy” or still see ...
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Cathy and I talk about sibling bullying.  Is it accepted more because it’s part of living with brothers and sisters?  Or maybe because bullying was part of our household growing up?  We discuss a USA Today Article entitled “Bullying By Siblings Just As Damaging” Keep in mind it’s not just physical, it’s psychological as well.  We give our two cents as well as some tools how to recognize if bullying is a problem and what ...
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This week Cathy and Todd focus on two things: Emotional Intelligence and Summertime Blues. What is the importance of raising emotionally intelligent boys? They are offering a class for 5th grades (10 boys/10 girls) and the girls filled up almost immediately.  The boys have been more of a challenge to recruit.  They discuss why, and they specifically cite Cathy’s latest blog about why we need to let our sons feel. They talk about their 5 year ...
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Cathy and Todd introduce you to their new program titled Be U: Helping 5th graders become emotionally intelligent leaders. Kids are always being told to focus on their IQ, but what about their Emotional Intelligence?  Do they know their value and importance? Do they know how to work with others? Do they know how to manage their emotions?  This 6 session program (offered in Elmhurst, IL) targets 5th graders to help them feel grounded in who they are ...
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My guess is that your answer is, “I hope so”  or “Of course I am”.  Sometimes what we wish for our kids is different than how we treat our kids.  An example of this trust issue happened to me at Great America when I waited in line with my daughter to get on a roller coaster only to find out when it was our turn to board that she was too afraid to get on ...
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Is it naïve to be positive, or is it naïve to be negative? This is the question surrounding the short video entitled “This is Water”, an audio from author David Foster Wallace’s commencement speech.  It’s backed up by meaningful and thought provoking video, reminding us to consider that if we view the world differently, we can change our own reality.  Cathy and Todd discuss the common “monotony” of an adult day, and how we can make ...
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Sticks & Stones

Sticks & Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me – is it true?  We think yes, and we think no.  Our friend’s daughter came home saddened by a classmate who said something mean – mom replied with, “words schmerds, don’t worry about it.”  And her daughter said, “But those words hurt me.”  We talk about the paradox of the importance and unimportance of words – they are powerful IF you give ...
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In a blog by Jill Kirby titled “If This Is Average, Then I’ll Take It”  We discuss that in a “bell shaped” curve, most kids are academically average, yet very few parents are willing to accept this. We continue discussing how a kid might be average in the classroom, yet have other special gifts.  Could they be good enough? And is good enough something you can handle? It is our job as parents to nurture and ...
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Jason Collins comes out as the first openly gay current NBA star.  We discuss why this will help our culture to continue to evolve to be one of inclusiveness instead of one of exclusion.  We also talk how this will positively affect all young boys and girls who are gay now might be able to look at this situation and imagine possibilities of their own life that were otherwise more difficult to see.  We discuss ...
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The Butterfly Effect, you have heard of it right? What you do has ripples and effects others around the world. In the wake of the Boston Bombings, and all of the activities that have taken place since, it appears that there is no better display of the Butterfly Effect to be seen right now. Cathy and Todd talk about how teaching your children about this idea can lead them down the road to success and ...
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Cathy and Todd follow up on last week’s ADHD discussion because they received some not-so-happy feedback from some listeners.  They address the fact that often times when a child is medicated, it can be a very difficult and well thought out decision, it’s not always thought of as a quick fix.  But in too many cases, it’s the first choice, and that’s where a new perspective or different options may make a difference. They also ...
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Are there “alternative” ways to deal with ADHD other than popping a pill?  Cathy and Todd discuss the significant number of children that are diagnosed with ADHD (6.4 million children) and why 2/3 of them are given a prescription. Todd recalls a recent experience where he witnessed a 40+ year old bully a 10 year old boy – he wishes he could have the moment back and do it differently. Todd and Cathy face-off on ...
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Sibling Rivalry

Cathy and Todd talk about sibling rivalry, how it’s good “life practice”, and the differences between what’s normal and when it’s a good idea to interfere. They also talk about family meetings and how to get everybody on the same page (before the kids tune you out). Todd talks about Lisa Reagan‘s article titled “Why and How Do We Shift” (in Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine) where she shares four different ways to open up ...
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You are not alone if you have shamed your kid this week. Why hide all of the truth? Let’s get it out in the open and talked freely about being shamed, because their is a good chance it happened to you. This week Cathy and Todd continue to talk about Brene Brown’s shame and vulnerability research. They discuss 6 ways to NOT respond when someone shares something deep or shameful, why some friends are easier ...
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Are you worrying yourself sick? Is that even possible? Cathy (with the support of Brene Brown) helps Todd through his continuous struggle over money, worry, & fear.  He’s frustrated with the amount of worry he’s carrying because it brings down his mood. He’s worrying about worrying and feeling bad about feeling bad. In order for us to be good parents, we must figure out a way to be a good example of how to allow ...
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Has Todd hit his boiling point when it comes to how much screen time his daughters have? The iPad is taking over and he can’t control it! Can Cathy help Todd come to love the iPad for what it can be? Who else spent all their hard earned cash as kids playing video games when they were young? Times have changed. Now there is no reason to go to the Arcade, because you can save ...
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While Todd didn’t see the stress of standardized tests in the latest episode of HBO’s “Girls”, it did stress him out because he is worried about his own children.  Will his own three daughters stay healthy if this is the way things are when they’re in their 20’s. Maybe Todd shouldn’t watch so much HBO. As for the standardized testing issue, every state and most parents have to deal with it and the stress it ...
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We discuss two related topics: Know anyone who lives life through their children?  Can you be too close to your children?  Do you know parents that have a case of the “We’s” – Do you find parents who say things like “We are trying to make the soccer team” or “We decided to do ballet this summer.”   This can sometimes be a sign that parents might be a little too close to their children ...
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Cathy and Todd discuss “disengagement” and how it can erode the trust in a relationship – your partner may not be cheating or abusive, but if they emotionally disengage, it can be very painful.  They also discuss how we disengage from our children and how it makes them feel unsafe.  We often talk about Domestic Violence against women, but what about when a man is abused by a woman?  How does this type of domestic ...
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Have you ever heard of the term “childism”?  Neither had Cathy or Todd, until they heard about a book by Elizabeth Young Bruehl called  “Childism: Confronting Prejudice Against Children”  They discuss the increasing trend of parents using social media to humiliate their children to demonstrate authority.  Todd really struggles with parents who punish and exert unfair tactics against their children. In this episode, learn how to discipline kids without humiliation so that the discipline works ...
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Cathy and Todd talk REAL love vs SPIDER love (taken from Martha Beck’s book, Steering by Starlight) – do you love authentically or do you “make” people love you by controlling their behavior OR altering your behavior so you don’t “bother” them? REAL love is about sharing your true self and setting the ones you love free so they can be their true selves.  They also discuss if it’s wise to talk to our kids ...
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How exactly are we teaching our sons “to be a man”?  Have you ever used the phrase- “You throw like a girl.” Most have and we explain why it’s the little things that add up to make your son less of a man and create your sons’ overall perception of women.  1 in 5 women in America will report that they were sexually assaulted.  We discuss Colin Stokes Ted Talk regarding the movies we watch ...
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Dr. Kelly from Tree of Life Chiropractic joins Todd and Cathy for a discussion about the flu and the flu shot.  There’s a lot of panic right now, but there are many effective ways to take care of you and your family.  Dr. Kelly shares information and resources that may ease your mind.  And Cathy and Todd discuss the Lance Armstrong interview – are we practicing forgiveness or do we feel the need to punish? ...
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Cathy and Todd discuss the importance of listening, inside and out. How yoga/quiet time can help our kids, and how listening to what our kids have to say (instead of being punishing and punitive) can help us be better parents.  They specifically discuss a San Diego school that has incorporated yoga into their curriculum – certain parents aren’t happy about it, what do you think?  They also discuss the “police stories” of their childhood, and ...
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Why was the Violence Against Women Act, initially passed in 1994, allowed to expire?  Todd and Cathy discuss this, women’s safety, and how India is peacefully protesting violence against women.  They also discuss the key to keeping a relationship alive and healthy, and they reference the movie Hope Springs ...
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Are you ready to shine this year? Are you ready to help your kids shine this year?  Todd and Cathy discuss three simple ways to make this a possibility.  They also discuss an article in The New York Times by David Brooks about a dad who tells his kids he’s ashamed and disappointed in them so they change – does he think shame and guilt will work and does  he understand his role in their ...
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Cathy and  Todd discuss this quote they found on Dr. Christiane Northrup’s Facebook page.  Sounds  harsh, but is it true? Does your family tend to tip-toe around one person during the holidays? Does one person’s difficulties become everybody’s difficulties? They discuss setting appropriate boundaries with a bah humbug relative so you can hold on to your Christmas Spirit.  They also discuss personal responsibility and how your attitude is always your decision.  How do you view ...
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Cathy and Todd discuss the importance of personal responsibility in the wake of a tragedy. You can do something, you can make a change. Focus on what you are doing, giving, saying on an everyday basis – what kind of ripples are you putting out into the world? Are you focused on love or anger? Giving or taking? Being “right” or making a connection? They also discuss the importance of grieving, stigmas around mental illness, ...
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How do we teach our sons to respect women?  It starts with women loving themselves.  Todd and Cathy discuss Jada Pinkett Smith’s Facebook post and how degrading women hurts men just as much.  They also discuss Cathy’s latest blog about self love, how to talk to our kids about death, and how much they love the original Karate Kid ...
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Einstein said the most important question we can ask ourselves is whether the universe is kind.  What do you think?  Cathy and Todd discuss universal principles, faith, miracles, and how these belief systems effect our parenting.  They also discuss Debbie Downers, why negative thinking can be harmful, and Marianne Williamson’s new book ...
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The battle you have all been waiting for- ZPR vs Parenting Unplugged.  This is a “no holds barred” cage match to decide who is the better show… and the better parents for that matter.  This is one that you won’t want to miss ...
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Cathy and Todd had the honor of talking with Rev Ed Bacon, author of the 8 Habits of Love and host of Oprah’s Soul Series on XM Radio.  They discuss everything from forgiveness, to self awareness, and why choosing love over fear is an essential decision when it comes to your partner, your kids, or even yourself.  In true ZP style, they even talk about the best movie, the best candy bar, and who Rev ...
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Cathy has been emailing Todd articles about being “too busy” and today they talk about it.  Why is this the social norm and why are we so comfortable with busyness? (Best two articles Article- Are you as busy as you think by Dr. Laura Vanderkam and Simple Yet Astounding Ways to Calm Down by Norman Fisher).  They also discuss Ed Bacon’s 8 Habits of Love (Ed will be a guest on ZP next week!) and which habit they love ...
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ZPR Talks Politics

Do you talk about politics in front of your kids? Of course you share your perspective, but do you also say the other side is bad, evil, or whatever negative word you can find?  We discuss Dr. Peggy Drexler’s blog titled “Talking to Kids about Politics” – Talking to our kids about our viewpoint is great, but showing compassion for the other side is even better.  Cathy and Todd also talk about Annie Burnside’s latest ...
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The “R” Word

Do you want one child, two, three, four?  Everybody has an opinion, but what’s right for you? Cathy and Todd share their decision making process and discuss why it’s important to  respect other people’s choices when it comes to family size.  Ann Coulter made news when she decided to tweet the r-word, and John Franklin Stephens made bigger news when he wrote an open letter explaining why this word is offensive – Cathy and Todd ...
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We talk about the brave and beautiful Malala and her strength and determination to speak up for education. We discuss how teach our children how lucky they are to have access to education and other human rights. We also share thoughts on how to deal when you kids make friends with difficult kids (and start mimicking their behavior…). Join us! ...
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Did you read Allison Tate’s blog titled, The Mom Stays in the Picture?  Cathy and Todd discuss why moms step out of photographs and therefore aren’t captured in the memories.  Yes, there’s the vanity issue, but Cathy thinks there are deeper issues, too (shocking!).  Todd also shares a lot of hangover stories – once upon a time he was the life of the party, but having kids gave him some perspective.  They also discuss the ...
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Would you make your kids wear a sign that says, “I’m a thief?”  Or would you shoot your child’s computer and then post it on Facebook?  Maybe not, but have you ever humiliated your child in front of their friends or family?  Cathy and Todd discuss the shame involved in humiliation and why we need to “wake up” before making a choice that could negatively effect our children.  They also discuss yelling and fighting in ...
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Are you the only parent who has to stay at the party or the sports practice?  Do you feel like your kid needs your support all the time, but other kids don’t seem to need their parents?  Cathy and Todd discuss “needy” kids and why listening to their needs is important today, and in the long run (and they discuss Cathy’s recent blog about this very experience).  They also discuss the importance of stillness/quiet time/contemplation ...
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Did you know that our first impulse is to be generous?  But if we sit and think about it too long, we often change our mind.  Cathy and Todd discuss this research and also Ed Bacon’s new book called The Eight Habits of Love (#1 being generosity!).  They also discuss attachment parenting and what some call detachment parenting (taken from a Huffington Post article), birthday parties, and why Todd thinks kids should feel more pain at ...
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Judging is normal.  All humans judge situations so they can better assess what to do next.  BUT, we have to notice when we are judging and realize that our assessments aren’t always correct.  Cathy and Todd discuss how to assess whether something is true by using Byron Katie’s method titled The Work.  Todd also decides that you can’t say you love your children unless you are practicing love – he gets angry when abusive men/and ...
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When it comes to sports, do you encourage or push? Cathy and Todd discuss why supportive encouragement is great, but pushing can be harmful.  Do you want your kids to play your sport and live your dream, or do you want them to figure out what they enjoy?  They also discuss the obsession with sports and Todd’s three fantasy football teams – you read that right, THREE ...
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Are girls “meaner” than boys? A lot of parents say this, but is it really true?  Cathy and Todd discuss this and refer to Cathy’s latest blog about why calling girls mean can be harmful.  They also discuss three things that every man should know about women – ladies, make sure your husband listens to this podcast!  It can open up great conversations about what you need and why!  Finally, they talk about the man ...
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What do you do when your toddlers (or older kids) come into your bed in the middle of the night?  Are you used to it? Does it drive you crazy? Todd and Cathy discuss night-time options and their own personal experiences.  They also discuss why making casual negative remarks about your kids in front of your kids (i.e. “I can’t wait until this guy goes back to school…”) may be harmful.  They also discuss wool ...
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