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The Awakened Family: A Revolution in Parenting

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  1,200 ratings  ·  151 reviews
"Parents . . . you will be wowed and awed by [Dr. Shefali]." —Oprah Winfrey

New from the New York Times bestselling author of The Conscious Parent comes a radically transformative plan that shows parents how to raise children to be their best, truest selves.


What if...?

What if I told you that you can put an end to all of your parenting struggles?

That you can learn to parent
...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 31st 2016 by Viking
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Erin Just this morning my 4-year-old seemed to have woken up on the wrong side of the bed. Or something. All I know is when I got up at 5:45 he was awake…moreJust this morning my 4-year-old seemed to have woken up on the wrong side of the bed. Or something. All I know is when I got up at 5:45 he was awake and already screaming. He wanted to get dressed. (Ok) Then he couldn't find his favorite shirt (more screaming). Then his shoes were untied (more). Everything was a reaction. I reached for him, and held him tightly to my chest, kissing his head, patting his hair. He hit me. I told him I loved him. I sat there on his floor and held him close to my heart. It went on for more than fifteen minutes. I don't know if he was tired or what. This is very unlike him. All I know is that with the help of Shefali's book, I was able to be there for him in his time of need. I didn't yell back, hit back, take it personally, get angry, or storm out and leave him alone. I don't know quite what the right thing is to do for him, but I know my reacting with my own insanity is not going too help my boy.
After breakfast and thirty minutes later he asked me to cuddle on the couch. What an honor. We got in the car, went to school, and he is seemingly okay now.
Now, how would have that scenario looked a few months ago in my house? I'm sure I would have been yelling, too. Thanks, Shefali. (less)
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Jenifer Jacobs
Jun 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Finished reading for the second time. Back to the beginning to start again. So wonderful.

This is the parenting book I have been waiting for all my life. I finished two days ago and promptly began it again. I listened to it, bought the hardback, and am purchasing the kindle version as well. It pulls together so many ideas I have about parenting and the world, and also makes me stretch and turn inward to examine my own biases and triggers. I LOVE THIS BOOK. I have had the best days of my life with
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Sera
Jun 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is tough to review. When I started it, I almost put it back down for good, since the opening was all about how your kids are your equals and other comments that sounded very much like the book was going to be about permissive parenting. I'm glad that I continued to read it, because there was a lot in the book that I found interesting. For example, we project so much of our crap on our kids, mostly based out of fear, or our own experiences with our parents when growing up as a child. We ...more
Skylar
Dec 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
I'm sure this book is great for someone, but that's not me. I like new age psychobabble as well as the next guy, but this was beyond my understanding and patience. The language was too flowery and convoluted to be meaningful, much less practical. I quickly stopped reading and moved on. An excellent example is the third sentence: "Once we have connected with our sovereign spirit, creating the space for our children to get in touch with their spirit becomes the critical objective of parenthood." ...more
José Antonio Lopez
Feb 10, 2018 rated it it was ok
A good idea buried in rubbish.

I became interested in Tsabary after an invitation to one of her conferences. Trying to become familiar with her work I watched her TEDx talk in SF and an interview with Oprah Winfrey. Her thesis about changing the idea of perfect parenting for self-improvement through our interactions with our children is right on. Even more when combined with mindfulness to be aware and sensible to the moments parents get hooked in power struggles with their children. However, I
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Kevin Egan
Nov 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Well worth it. Have it nearby to remind yourself that to help your kids live life to the maximum you must keep yourself in order.
Leanne
Aug 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: psychology, parenting
On one hand, I adored this book. Tsabary truly is breaking down old parenting traditions and putting forth a powerful new premise on how to parent. On the other hand, her meandering writing style drives me a bit batty at times. Nevertheless, I highly recommend this book. It is really as much about being a healthy human as it is about being a parent, and it will challenge all your preconceived ideas.

When I was raising my own children, I found myself at times almost paralyzed in worry that I was
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Angie Sanders
May 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I found this book so beautifully written that I was deeply moved. Even to tears at times! As a parent educator with Lori Petro's Teach Through Love, I've read loads of parenting books in my research and studies but this one is different. It asks us to truly go deep and let go of our egos. Dr. Shefali Tsabury strips down the myths of parenting and gets to the heart of the matter and spirit of what it means to be a parent. We must become spiritual guides to our kids. She tells us we must begin to ...more
Angela Juline
Jul 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Love the reminders to be present, mindful and that only you can change what's not working in a relationship. I put some strategies into practice right away, such as not trying to "fix" my children's heartache/disappointment/frustration, etc. - or, if your child isn't in a talkative mood, it's not about you, it's about them, so respect it. But, I can't give this book a 5 for several reasons: the author has a very holier than thou attitude; I completely disagree that a child's poor behavior is a ...more
Aubrey
Jul 08, 2016 rated it did not like it
While I believe strongly in being kind, present, and mindful, this book isn't a good fit for me. Props to the author for laying it out in the intro to save me from lots of reading to figure that out. "....[An awakened parent is] willing to be the architects of a new model of parenthood where parent and child are seen as equal..."
Leann
Jun 29, 2016 rated it did not like it
Oh dear. The author has a fine message and a strong premise. Unfortunately, these are buried under maudlin writing that I did not find appealing at all. Glad others liked it but I can apply the same strategies without needing to "connect to my sovereign spirit" before leaving my children "free to actualize their individual destiny," thank you very much.
Ian
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
This parenting book is a useful blend of western psychology, parenting advice, and eastern philosophy of higher consciousness.
Tsabary asks parents to reflect on their own issues, struggles, and automatic reactions as the key to coping with the challenges of raising their children. Children are an exacting mirror of our personal fears and issues, as Tsabary points out throughout her book, and it is worth our time and effort to take a closer look at these reflections (reactions) in creating a
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Whitney
Sep 14, 2016 rated it liked it
Parts of this really resonated with me and parts seemed a little too out there. The idea of logical consequences makes a lot of sense. I also appreciated the advice to focus on changing your reaction a a parent rather than trying to control your child. But some of the stories were hard to relate to; her clients seem to be mostly wealthy New Yorkers and their experience is very different from mine. The poems at the end of each chapter and some of the advice felt a little new agey and didn't ...more
Amber
Jul 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the best parenting books I've read, and I've read a lot! The premise is mindfulness for the parent, and being mindful that at the core of all of us is a need to be seen. "Am I seen, am I okay, am I worthy," was the most memorable quote for me. I try to keep this in mind as I interact with the little people in my care. I highly recommend it for all parents and anyone who may have grown up feeling misunderstood or not seen by their parents/adults in their lives.
Stephanie Kreiner
Jul 22, 2016 rated it did not like it
I liked her first book, The Conscious Parent (and I own it). This one is disappointing and my one word for it is repetitive. She feels that our children push our buttons from our own childhood.
Amber Robinson
May 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’ve never read a parenting book quite like this one. It turns a lot of traditional ideas on their heads and begs parents to look inside themselves and examine motives and actions instead of just focusing on changing/controlling the behavior of their kids. Very helpful and effective. It’s clearly missing God as it’s written from a new age perspective, so I have some philosophical disagreements, but there is so much in it to be learned, appreciated and applied.
Roma Khetarpal
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Things can get complicated when, as parents, we explore our inner world and try to understand our own behavior in relation to the experiences we are having with our children and their unique personalities. There aren't many parenting books that:
a. highlight the recognition and understanding of our inner voice and inner child AND
b. show how that comes into play with the day-to-day and repetitive issues we have with our children AND
c. provide strategies to resolve them

In her masterpiece, The
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Tammy Ramsay
Jun 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Life-changing book…even if you are not a parent.

This is more than another parenting book….it will ignite a journey of self-discovery that has the power to improve all relationships in your life. I thought I needed tips to control my children’s behavior, but now know that going within myself and healing my old wounds is the way to a deeper, more authentic connection with my children. Reading this book made me want to let go of the old hierarchical parenting model, which robs children of their
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KC
Jun 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Although my kids are adults now, I am always interested in reading the latest in parenting books. What I enjoyed from this book was the author took the time to investigate parents behavior, accountability, and how our past affected our present. Not blaming but exploring. A self help book to be better people in all relationships.
Brooke Waite
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-favorites
This is my favorite parenting book in several years! 4.5 stars!!

I heard Dr. Tsabary on a Goop podcast talking about her conscience approach to parenting and so I decided to check her book out from the library. I normally purchase parenting (or self-improvement books) that really speak to me but I wasn't committed quite yet to her ideas. I picked it up thinking I'm probably going to get a good dose of new-age, hippie free think.....and there is as she explains how to "tap into the higher purpose
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Andreea Apetrei
May 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of those books that you wish it won’t finish! I’ve read so many books about mindfulness and people, but this one is really special! I would make it a mandatory reading for parents! Because we may consider that parenting “comes natural” (this something that I also thought) but that “nature” is already conditioned by culture, society, your own family etc! And new kids of the world deserve new parenting paths, awakened ones ... not repeating blindly some old ones. I don’t think there is one ...more
Bryan Ramsay
Jun 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Awakened Family truly is a revolution in the making. It illuminates the fact that the centuries-old methods of command and control, fear and intimidation, my way or the highway parenting simply don't work any longer. This only leads to disconnection.

Following Dr. Shefali's teachings & putting them into practice on a day to day, moment by moment basis is hard work but our family dynamic has improved immensely. The deep connection that's forming between me and my two girls is a thrill to
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Karen L.
May 15, 2017 rated it liked it
Some really deep truths in this book. Definitely one of those books that in some way will forever change your view of yourself as a parent. Even though I really connected with parts of this book on a deep level, I found it a little lacking in specific action steps for change. Also, it was a little hard on moms (and we are pretty good at being hard on ourselves already). All that being said, I am grateful for this book and I feel like I can be a better parent having read it. I am especially ...more
Mireille Duval
Sep 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
I haven't actually read all of this book, as it is the longest book in the universe despite its very simple message, which is:

A lot of the conflicts between you and your children stem from your own insecurities and problems. In any relationship, obviously including the ones with your children, the only things you can control are you and your own reactions. Maybe try some therapy!

I liked reading about some of her patients (I guess I'm nosy this way), but it's written with such flowery language,
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Jamie
Jun 16, 2016 rated it it was ok
Let me preface this by saying that I agree with a lot of what this book has to say: allow your child to be her own person, don't provoke her to anger, give plenty of space, and for goodness sakes, LISTEN.

However, it was strange to the point of distraction that this Ph.D incorporated nothing in the way of research into the book. It was, essentally, one really, really long opinion. A lot of contradictory recommendations given, and the author's recommendations presented as the "right" way to
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J.
Feb 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am not a parent, and I feel like I would have been as skeptical about the "new age" spin that this book takes as some other readers. However, my grandmother, who was anything but a believer in new age theories, embodied fully many of the parenting principles, and general beliefs presented here. This created a stable, supportive and on the whole wonderful atmosphere in her home. Needless to say the essence of truly connecting with children is perhaps the most important thing any parent or ...more
Juanita
Aug 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book applies the spiritual belief that if I am triggered emotionally by another, then that is my stuff - and applies it to the relationship with our children. The author explores many common parenting issues and gives many examples of parents that she has worked with. A great match with Emotion Focused Family Therapy which distills this book into more practical language and techniques to explore how our past "stuff" blocks us in our parenting. Many things to contemplate in this book.
Roger Winn
Way too much of a focus on rich people for my taste. There are some good ideas in here but they are spread out by a bunch of new ageisms I didn't find useful. The boom could have easily been 100 pages shorter and still gotten the ideas across.
kglibrarian
Oct 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, parenting
Although I don't read parenting books as much as I did when my children were younger, I'm always open to helpful advice as my kids enter new phases of their lives. When I started this one, I almost put it down when I read the author's ideas about children as our equals. But as I read on, I realized that she wasn't supporting a permissive style of parenting as much as encouraging parents to understand the reasons behind children's often baffling behavior.

Having older children, ages 17 through 23,
...more
Lim Lyn
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book termendously, it has helped me deal with my sudden outbursts and anger at my kids. It does put parenting upside down by indicating that before trying to blaming a child's misbehavior on the child first we need to analyze ourselves as parents and change oursleves. I believe some of the points also works well in all relationships not just kids. Somehow this book resonated better to me than Shafali's Out Of Control Book
Some takeaway points

1. When our kids emmit
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“The idea that “I need to be happy” or “my child deserves to be happy” comes from a sense that the present moment is somehow lacking. In other words, we see our life through a lens of scarcity, noticing all the things we don’t have instead of the abundant way the universe provides for us. And so, as the Declaration of Independence sanctions, we set off in “the pursuit of happiness,” not realizing that this can never bring us happiness. On the contrary, it’s the breeding ground of discontent and disappointment. You” 7 likes
“Do you see me?” This is the big question your child is asking every day. “Can you recognize me for who I am, different from your dreams and expectations for me, separate from your agenda for me?” 2 likes
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