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Parenting coach leads workshop tonight at Mountain View Library

Parenting coach and author Cynthia Klein is scheduled to host a free workshop 7-8:30 p.m. today at the Mountain View Public Library, 585 Franklin St.

At the workshop, titled “Build Your Child’s Self-Confidence and Personal Power,” Klein aims to help parents better understand the two main components of self-esteem: children feeling “lovable” and “capable.” She added that greater self-confidence “teaches (children) to stand up for themselves, as indecisive children and children who are fearful often do not express their desires.”

Klein said she does not lecture at her workshops; they are about introspection, as “change can only happen through self-reflection.”

At today’s workshop, Klein intends to provide parents with opportunities to relate to their children through their own experiences and teach parents tools for analyzing their own behavior.

Klein’s philosophy, which she calls Ally Parenting, is based on this introspective approach. She said the most effective way for parents to change their children’s behavior is to change their own behavior first. The primary two ways to change effectively are to “identify communication blocks” and to determine “what role to take in different situations,” Klein said.

The three main roles parents can take are to direct, to collaborate and to support, according to the coach. When directing, the parent will solve a problem or make a decision for the child. When collaborating, the two will discuss the situation. When supporting, the parent will step back and allow the child to solve the problem.

As a parenting coach, Klein said she teaches parents how to listen to their children, how to choose a role and what to do in that role.

Klein said she has been developing her philosophy since she became a coach in 1994. She works with people ages 5-25. Klein added that all of the positive feedback she has received from parents is proof her philosophy works, and she credits her success to her ability to communicate and educate.

“I’ve been doing this so long that I really know myself what I feel is the best way to make change as a family, and so I’m able as an educator to convey that information,” she said. “There are some people who might have it, but because I’m an educator, I know how to move people forward, how to assess what’s going on and what’s wrong, and to see how to help them change their thought process and their actions, to support them and encourage them so they keep making change.”

Klein was inspired to become a parenting coach because of her background in psychology and later as a teacher, as well as her personal family relationships.

“I fundamentally realized that what mattered the most to me was to use my understanding of people as a way to create greater peace in the world, and one of the key components is how families get along, and I wanted to learn how to create a happier family myself,” she said. “The basic unit for world peace is a family.”

To sign up for the event, visit mountainview.libcal.com/event/4833442.

For more information on Klein, visit bridges2understanding.com.

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