I was extremely fortunate to be able to spend an evening with the highly intelligent Mandy Sagliari speaking about Proactive Parenting and addiction. What she had to say, soon engulfed me and I found myself wanting more… and more; I really could have spent hours listening to this prolific counsellor, author, mother and tv expert.
I was invited to my son’s school to listen to Mandy speaking on the subject of addiction, and OMG, I was glad I attended because it was not at all what I had expected.
So, who is Mandy Saligari and what is proactive parenting?
Although Mandy’s name sounded familiar, I hadn’t had time to google her but on arriving at the event, I soon realised that she had a tv show on Channel 5 called “In Therapy” which featured celebrities such as Gemma Collins and Colleen Nolan divulging their innermost thoughts in her consulting room. She is also the founder and clinical director of Charter, one of London’s leading outpatient clinics specialising in private addiction treatment which is based in London’s medical hotspot, Harley Street and a regular on TV’s “This Morning”.
The first step in promoting self-esteem in another is to consider your presence as the messenger. Do your words hold weight? are you teaching “do as I say, not as I do”, or do you practice what you preach? In other words, will your child want what you’ve got, because if they don’t, they are less likely to do what you suggest. Sometimes the feeling of offence a parent feels when their child won’t be reassured by them is a truthful indicator of where a part of the problem lies. Developing your own core of self-esteem is a powerful step towards promoting the same in your child.Mandy Saligari – Proactive Parenting
Addiction and the link to self-esteem
I very quickly became captivated by Mandy and I loved her presentation style to the parents and boys aged 13. She used a smattering of swear words to keep their attention and it was soon apparent that this was not going to be the “drugs talk” as many of us had experienced in the 80’s and 90’s (remember the Grange Hill Cast and “Just Say No” hit?). This was about addiction and not just drugs; why might we need something extra in our lives to make us feel better about ourselves. It was about self-esteem and preventing the mental health issues which may become addiction.
Mandy explained that she is divorced and experienced addiction recovery for herself when she received treatment in 1990 while working as a TV producer. She did not reveal what her addiction was and it was irrelevant as it does not matter what the addiction is, it is the same whether it be screen addition or alcohol, drugs or dieting. Why does someone become addicted?
Here’s a video taster of what Mandy has to say…… Feelings: Handle them before they handle you TEDx Guildford
Mandy has written a book called Proactive Parenting
As soon as I arrived home I jumped onto Amazon to order her book, Proactive Parenting which was published this year. I can’t get enough of Mandy Saligari and I have already changed by approach to screen-time with my children. Mandy gives really helpful tips on how to say “no” and “hold a no” – she speaks about how our children know which of our buttons to press to get what they want.
As such an amazing and prolific counsellor, she is able to charge £400 an hour at her London clinic, so I thought the book was a better option!
I am a single parent and I finally feel that someone is on my side through all the struggles I encounter. It’s not an easy journey asking your children to remove themselves from a game, but that seems to be the key and our children have to start taking responsibility for their actions and removing themselves from their machines themselves rather than Mum and Dad shouting and switching them off.
Children need to learn how to regulate themselves
If I look back to my childhood, when Mothers called “dinner” into the street, the children would run in. There was none of this “i’m just in the middle of a game” nonsense. It really struck home that as parents, we have stopped giving responsibility to children in terms of decision making. Children become teenagers who need to be able to decide whether to smoke or take drugs. They need to regulate their behaviour and ultimately, they need to have the self-esteem and confidence to say no.
In my opinion, every parent should read Proactive Parenting. It is a must and not only for parenting but to find yourself too. Mandy’s talk left me realising many things about myself too and by behaviour and why I have been attracted to certain “needy” men in the past.
When I think about the one thing that we could hone in on as the most important preventative measure for addiction, I would use those two little words “self-esteem”, i.e. how I feel about myself and therefore how I treat myself and others. As a parent, my level of self-esteem has a profound influence on that of my child. To be effective in parenting against addiction I must have good self-esteem.Mandy Saligari – Proactive Parenting
If you prefer an audio version of the book, this is also available
Written by The Group Hug Founder Director
This post carries Amazon affiliate marketing links for which The Group Hug Ltd gain a small amount of commission. However, The Director of The Group Hug has met Mandy Saligari and does highly recommend her book.