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Simple Steps for Values-Based Parenting
By Tiffany Meyer

Are you concerned about having a values-based foundation for your family in a rapidly changing world?  Do you feel now is the time to get clear inside yourself about what your values are in order to share them with your children?

Keep reading this article below >>

News from PuddleDancer Press  

New Publishing Agreement and The 3rd Edition of Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life

We are very pleased to announce that the Rosenbergs and PuddleDancer Press have finalized a new and comprehensive agreement regarding all of Marshall Rosenberg’s Works published by PuddleDancer Press. 

Keep reading this article below >>


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NVC Quote of the Month

"I would rather take my
time and come from an energy that I choose in communicating with my children, rather than habitually responding in
a way that I have been trained to do, when it's
not really in harmony with my own values.

"Sadly, we will often get much more reinforcement from those around us for behaving in a punitive, judgmental way, than in
a way that is respectful to our children."

Raising Children Compassionately


Values-Based Parenting ...continued

If you are continuing to read this article then chances are that you want information that will help you reconnect to the values that matter most to you and how to apply those individual values as part of your parenting style. Read on as we share some of the basics of how to parent with your values in mind.

In the book Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids the authors state that everyday thousands of messages of violence and mistrust reach our children. In addition, there is the overwhelming pressure to define ourselves by what we have rather then what we value. Confused parents are crying out for help and support.

You know as parents you have influence with your children; you want to pass on values and guide them in ways that will contribute to their happiness and success in life.

So where to begin?

Part One:
Determining Your Values

Step One: What are your values?

Let's start with a basic definition of values. Values for the purpose of this article are qualities desirable as a means or as an end in themselves. Qualities we might consider important are cleanliness, courtesy, respect and cooperation, to name a few.

These values, as our definition states, are wonderful in themselves but also by having, as an example, courtesy we are able to develop stronger more reliable relationships with others.

So what do you value? Make a list.  To help get your thoughts rolling, look to your beliefs, morals, and ideals.

Looking to people you consider role models is another way to identify the values you find appealing, and that by having will positively impact the quality of your life and those around you.

Step Two: What does each value look like for you?

Read over your list of values. Beside each value you find important, write a description of what that value looks like for you.

Take the value of cleanliness. Are you an "eat off the floor" kind of person, or is cleanliness defined for you as having clutter under control?

By taking the time to be clear about what you value and your personal definition of that value, you can look more closely at your own life and see if indeed you are living your values.

Step Three: Not living a value but really want to?

If you find you are not living a value, but you really want to, then now is the time to ask yourself, why? Is this a value you really hold dear, or is it a left over from something YOUR parents expected of you? If you do want to focus on that value in your life, maybe it is a matter of looking at the level at which that value is of importance to you.

Using the example of cleanliness once again, your parents might have defined cleanliness as being able to "eat off the floor", but for you controlling clutter fits more with your view of the world.

Before making the distinction between what your parents thought cleanliness was and what your definition is, you might have felt pressured to have a "picture perfect" house. The level of anxiety and confusion created from trying to conform to the expression of a value you do not agree with often comes out in your actions and words to your own family. 

Part Two
Sharing the Concept of Value-Based Living
with Your Children

As we said above, as a parent you have great influence over your children. Most children learn from observation. In fact, 95% of what we remember comes from family and social interactions, not from something we read in a book or were told by an authority figure.

For your children to understand the concept of living a values-based life, they must observe you doing the same.

Step One: Determine Your Purpose for Nurturing a
Values-Based Home

Home is where, by your example, the values you hold dear will become part of your child's own value system.

Often parents will say they want to have a calm and peaceful home. It would seem that a values-based environment would guarantee that, right? You simply TELL your kids what YOU value, and assume ensuring that peace and calm will follow.

That seems easy enough. If that worked it would certainly seem worth the effort of figuring out what you value. Especially if this meant you could enjoy living those values and experience the end of arguments or conflicts.

But remember back in Step 3 when you were asking yourself why you might not be living a value you seem to hold dear, and you realized it wasn't the value you weren't living, it was the expression of the value that was based on old conditioning from your childhood home?

Well, raising your children in a values-based home requires that you not only share your values with them, but also take the time to understand what they value too. This step goes a long way in ensuring your home is a place of peace and calm because it demonstrates that you value your children as individuals.

Not only is a values-based home a place of calm and peace for everyday living but it is important to remember that the home is a foundation for your children's future relationships as spouses, life partners, mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, grandmothers, grandfathers, friends, and colleagues.

Being clear about your values and helping your children to understand their own values, gives them a way to function in a world where it seems we are pressured to focus on what we HAVE more than on who we are.

Step Two: Have a "Values Conversation" with Your Kids

Having this type of conversation on a regular basis WILL lead to a peaceful, calm home.

After you have identified your values and why a values-based home would meet your needs, discuss this information with your children.

Children often are more than willing to contribute if they are given guidelines and feel relaxed because their views are being considered also.

In our book Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids, we go into much greater detail about how to use this beginning information about values, combine it with understanding your needs and those of your children to create a home life that meets your purpose through respecting all members ideas, feelings, and needs.

Step Three: Continue Your "Values-Based
Parenting Education"

Children need parents who live honestly and with a commitment to their values. You have always known this instinctually, but now you have a few tools you can use toward this end.

We invite you to take the opportunity to get clear about what has purpose and meaning for you and your family.  And, to do your best together to live in harmony with it.

To help support your continuing education in Values-Based Parenting check out the book Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids. Next, for a very practical way to involve your family in learning and expressing what they value in your family, get The No-Fault Game.

These resources were created by Sura Hart and Victoria Kindle Hodson are coauthors of The Compassionate Classroom, Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids, and The No-Fault Classroom, as well as creators of The No-Fault Game. They bring a combined 45 years of elementary teaching and parent education experience to their work. They've been developing and facilitating parent and teacher education workshops together for over 20 years. Learn more at

Then, to receive weekly reminders that will help you focus on living in harmony with what you value,subscribe to our FREE Compassionate Parenting NVC Tips.


Tiffany Meyer is the past editor and a contributing writer to the NVC Quick Connect e-Newsletter, the founder of the Help Share NVC Project, past marketing director for PuddleDancer Press, founder/president of Numa Marketing, author of Writing a Results-Driven Marketing Plan: The Nonprofit's Guide to Making Every Dollar Count, and creator of the companion online training program, Results-Driven Marketing Mastery. She has been learning and practicing NVC for more than a decade and remains committed to integrating it into her personal and professional life.


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"To communicate a
quality of unconditional
love, respect, acceptance
to our children doesn't
mean that we have to
like what they're doing.

"It doesn't mean we
have to be permissive
and give up our needs
or values.

"What it requires is
that we show them the
same quality of respect
when they don't do what
we ask, as when they do."

Raising Children Compassionately

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New Agreement & NVC 3rd Edition ...continued

Our new agreement with the Rosenbergs consolidates all previous agreements for the works listed to the column to the right into one document and serves to ensure that there is no confusion about ownership or administration of rights for these works in the future. All inquiries regarding publication, permissions or translation of these works should be made directly to PuddleDancer Press using the Permission Use Request Form, Foreign Rights Inquiry Form, or the Feedback Form found on our website at

Announcing a New 3rd Edition of
Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life

We are also very pleased to announce that this new agreement paves the way for a new 3rd edition of the Nonviolent Communication book, which will include a brand-new chapter on mediation and conflict resolution.

Over the years we've had many requests from the NVC community for a definitive treatment of this topic and we can think of no better way to satisfy this desire than by adding a comprehensive presentation of this subject, in Marshall's own words, to the main teaching tool available for learning the Nonviolent Communication process. We are confident that a new chapter that specifically addresses this topic will add a great deal of value to the book.

This is not only a chance to significantly bolster the value of the book; it is also provides us with ways to breathe new life into the opportunities for extending the reach of NVC work in general. A new edition is treated as a new book in the book industry meaning that all of the opportunities for promoting a new book become available to us again. We are thrilled that we have the chance to reinvigorate these possibilities for increasing awareness and acceptance of NVC by a wider audience and the ripple effect that this wave of new energy will have in supporting everyone in the NVC community who is involved in spreading this work around the planet.

Available Fall 2015

We have the book scheduled for release in fall 2015. This means that between the end of this year and through the summer of next year we will have a window during which we can leverage many of the advancements in social media, blogging, visual networks, Google +, podcasting, etc. to promote the book to new audiences. With the release of the book in 2015 there also comes the opportunity to take advantage of the latest advances in interactive book design and digital apps that can further engage readers with the content.

Later this year keep an eye out for special announcements about these opportunities and the possibilities of gathering support from the existing NVC community to help realize their fullest potential.

Please stay tuned. Exciting times are on the horizon!



Titles Subject to the
New Publishing Agreement

Trade Books:
  Life Enriching Education
  Nonviolent Communication: 1st, 2nd,
    All Subsequent Editions
  Speak Peace in a World of Conflict

Trade Booklets:
  Being Me, Loving You
  Getting Past the Pain Between Us
  The Heart of Social Change
  Raising Children Compassionately
  The Surprising Purpose of Anger
  The Spiritual Basis for Nonviolent
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  We Can Work It Out

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