With the recent explosion of interest in mindfulness has come an interest in the application of mindfulness to parenting. The current literature, reviewed in detail in this chapter, indicates that mindfulness is highly relevant to parents and that mindfulness-based interventions may improve antenatal and postnatal outcomes, decrease parental stress, improve parental well-being and foster better parent–child interactions to the benefit of both parents and children. Mindful parenting needs to be linked, at a theoretical level, to basic science and to wider theoretical frames and concepts. Within this chapter the links between mindful parenting, parental responsiveness and attachment theory as well as the links between mindful parenting, psychological flexibility and relational frame theory are explored. Mindful parenting offers us the opportunity to better understand the practice of relational or interpersonal mindfulness, as well as the practice of mindfulness within a diversity of embodied experiences, such as the interconnected embodiment of pregnancy. A rich diversity of mindful parenting practices, specifically tailored to the transformative possibilities within life as a committed parent, need to be fully developed and tested empirically. Parenting is a near-universal life experience with inbuilt transformative potential. Further, parenting has vast impacts upon the next generation. The promotion of mindful parenting is an ideal means to build a wiser, accepting, mindful and compassionate society.


mindfulness acceptance relational mindfulness interpersonal mindfulness parenting acceptance and commitment therapy relational frame theory attachment 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Queensland Cerebral Palsy and Rehabilitation Research Centre, School of Medicine, The University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia
  2. 2.School of Psychology, The University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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