Parenting Survival Guide: A Sneak Peek Of Ben Greenfield’s New “Boundless Parenting” Audiobook + His Love & Logic Approach to Parenthood.

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Family, Lifestyle, Parenting, Parenting, People, Podcast, Podcast-new, Spirituality

From suffering through countless miles of Ironman triathlons to venturing out onto the battlefields of Spartan races to fighting sharks off fish in the ocean, standing in front of thousands of people to speak, and bowhunting for wild pigs at 2 am, there’s no adventure I haven't tackled, and as a result, I've quite frequently over the past couple decades found myself learning hard lessons from the buckets of failures and trench-based lessons I've experienced and learned along the way.

But the adventure of parenting has been the most challenging, the most rewarding, the most meaningful, and the most lesson-packed, and now, in my latest book, “Boundless Parenting,” I’m handing you a compass, a survival guide, and a field manual to the most rewarding expedition of all—raising self-actualized and flourishing children.

This isn't just your run-of-the-mill parenting guide—far from it. Over the past three years, I've journeyed through the myriad philosophies, styles, and strategies of some truly exceptional parents. The mission? To offer you a wellspring of wisdom and practical insights that can illuminate your own parenting path. Be it single parents, grandparents, celebrities, entrepreneurs, pastors, teachers, or survivalists, each chapter is an exploration of the unique experiences and strategies of a different parenting archetype.

Now, Boundless Parenting is available as the ultimate audio experience, as each chapter's narration comes not just from me and my wife Jessa, but also from each contributing parent's voice. That’s right, you get to hear each parent read their chapter from their own perspective, making this audiobook come to life like none I’ve ever experienced. The parents, including my very own mom, my dad, myself, my wife, and many other models of practical parenting wisdom, delve into the fascinating realms of education, discipline, parenting, legacy, and so much more with specifics like:

  • The best methods for developing lifelong immunity, cellular resilience, mental toughness, and overall health in a child
  • How to manage your time, deal with overwhelm, care for yourself, and maintain high levels of productivity and health while raising children
  • Family mission statements to family brands, traditions, and routines that foster pride and a strong identity in children
  • Parents like Naveen Jain reveal how anyone can start a non-profit for their child for generational wealth building
  • The crazy, controversial primal secrets of “tiger dad” parents like The Liver King and Joe Desena
  • Lenore Skenazy on why she's America's Worst Mom (and why you should be too!)
  • Joseph Anew and Emilia Run's advice on respectful parenting, slowing down, and controversial topics like co-sleeping
  • Angie Fletcher on the intriguing traditions she began with her oldest child as a single, divorced mother
  • My own parents Gary and Pat Greenfield on how they raised me and my 4 siblings to approach the world in a far different, outside-the-box way compared to other kids
  • And much more!

In today’s podcast, I'm inviting you to a special sneak peek of the audiobook version of Boundless Parenting. I'm going to reveal the origins of this grand project and the rigorous selection process behind the parents featured in the book. I’ll also be offering insight into my own parenting approach, gleaned from a myriad of books, models, and resources that have significantly influenced my journey as a father.

Of course, no parenting guide is complete without a discussion on education. As such, I'll unveil my perspective on navigating the complex world of children's education outside traditional schooling models. You'll learn about the cherished traditions, habits, routines, and rituals that form the bedrock of the Greenfield family, and the strategies we use to ensure our legacy of love, presence, and discipline extends to future generations.

And, because parenting isn't just about the challenges, this book and this podcast celebrate the wins, too. I'll share one of my proudest moments as a parent—a memory that serves as a testament to the boundless love, commitment, and joy that this journey brings. Let's dive in!

During this discussion, you'll discover:

-The Boundless Parenting audiobook…06:07

  • Boundless Parenting by Ben Greenfield
  • A lot of extra goodies that aren't in the printed book are in the audiobook
  • Most of the parents featured in the book recorded the audio version of their respective chapter
  • Learning education, discipline, and wisdom-building principles from some of the most amazing parents on the planet
  • Entrepreneurs, billionaires, moms, dads, pastors, education experts, legacy builders, wealth managers, and other absolutely earth-shaking parents

 –How Boundless Parenting evolved…07:51

  • The Prophet by Khalil Gibran
  • Am I a good parent?
    • Constantly nagging question
  • Outsourcing education
    • Wondering if the education our kids get is good enough
  • Looking for a roadmap or blueprint to being a perfect parent
  • Realizing our perfect plan to be a perfect parent was an unattainable pipe dream
  • Ben is a prepper hard-wired to perform intensive research for any endeavor
    • Read every available book on parenting
    • Interviewed a host of parenting and educational experts
    • Researched every possible topic
    • Wrote a book
  • 10 Ways To Grow Tiny Superhumans by Ben Greenfield (free download)
  • Then life happened and everything fell apart
    • Realized there is no perfect parenting blueprint
  • Ben and Jessa were asked by many to write a parenting book
  • Simple yet critically foundational concepts that any parent can implement
    • Children are a gift from God
    • Daily focus on peace, love, and forgiveness
    • Systematically planned calendar family traditions, rituals, routines, habits
    • A diet that has real nutrients from as close to nature as possible
    • Value placed on hard work and occasional discomfort, sacrifice, stamina, and self-discipline
    • Development of a sacred intimate relationship with nature
    • Self-directed education approach focused largely on real-life experiences outside the classroom
  • No promise that what worked well with Ben’s children will work well with other people's children
  • How could a parenting book be complete and comprehensive without the author being some brilliant omniscient unicorn of a parent (hint: it can't!)? 
  • Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris
  • Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferris
    • Tim assembled a tribe of mentors
    • Asked 100+ brilliant people the very questions that he wanted to answer
  • James Altucher's podcast with Tim Ferris
  • Personal Socrates by Marc Champagne
  • Ben decided to do the same
  • Crowdsource, collect, curate, aggregate, edit, package, and publish an anthology of the parenting tools, tactics, and habits that have been proven to actually work for helping to raise creative, resilient, and impactful children
  • Additional resources available on book resources webpage

-How Ben chose the parents to feature in the book…24:45

-Ben’s basic parenting approach…39:22

  • Ben and Jessa have twin 15-year-old sons
  • C-section vs. natural birth
    • Jessa gave birth in the hospital
  • Love and logic parenting approach
  • Parenting with Love and Logic by Foster Cline and Jim Fay
  • Heavy emphasis on respect and dignity for the child, paired with love, compassion, and empathy from the parent
    • The opposite of over-parenting and helicopter approach
  • BBC article about the Sami tribe – The secret of Arctic ‘survival parenting' 
  • The Greenfields don't have many non-negotiable rules
  • Educate their sons on the consequences of the decisions they might make in life, then step back and allow them to deal with the consequences
    • Eating carbohydrates
    • Phones and screen time
    • Bedtime and prioritizing sleep
  • Gluten Guardian (use code BEN10 to save 10%)
  • Setting examples
  • Authenticity is key
  • Honest and open discussions about the responsible use of substances like alcohol and cannabis, including the fact that these compounds can be damaging and deleterious
  • Deep and wide-ranging conversations about porn and sex
  • Endure by Ben Greenfield
  • Setting up some amount of protection
  • Canopy
  • Protect when you must, permit when you can

-Books, models, and resources Ben found beneficial for his parenting…51:57

-Traditions, habits, routines, or rituals that are most important for Ben’s family…56:25

  • Tradition provides the safety, dependability, and predictability
  • Rich Christiansen and Legado
    • Specialize in helping families identify their core values and important beliefs and then create memorabilia, traditions, rituals, routines
  • A family mission statement
  • Room wall family crest

-Who did Ben look up to as parenting mentors?…1:10:36

  • Never really had any notable business, personal, or family mentors
  • Ben’s parents and his parenting approach
  • Improving his childhood experience

-Teaching your children about how to raise their children…1:12:03

  • You are not raising your children, you are raising your grandchildren
  • “How we spend our days is how we live our lives” – The Writing Life by Annie Dillard
  • Giving a good example
  • Recognize that they'll not just be raising their immediate children but raising generations to come
  • Legacy based impact
  • Evening practice of self-examination
    • What good have I done?
    • What could I have done better?
    • When was I most connected to my life's purpose?

-Ben’s strategies for educating children outside of traditional school…1:15:00

  • Ben was homeschooled K through 12
  • Decided not to homeschool
  • Prepackaged curriculum doesn't necessarily cater to a child's individual interests and passions
  • Deschooling Society by Ivan Illich
    • Modern education is essentially an indoctrination program
    • Universities have become recruiting centers for the personnel of the consumer society
    • Schools have failed our individual needs, supporting false and misleading notions of progress and development
  • Ben and Jessa unschooled their sons
  • Scheduled activities
    • Flexible time for creative free play
    • Home chores like milking the goats or gathering eggs from the chicken coop
    • Jiu-jitsu or tennis lessons
    • Trip to a Mexican restaurant with a Spanish teacher
    • Monopoly game with their math teacher
    • Workout, breathwork session, or other physical disciplines
    • Family meditation, devotions, prayer, dinner
  • Blocks of learning centered around specific activities
    • Investing, nonprofits, finances, cryptocurrency, real estate, fiction writing, permaculture, bees, gardening, hydroponics, and greenhouse building
  • Required record keeping and demonstration of core proficiency
  • Online virtual assistant and nanny
  • From second to fifth grade, they attended a local private school
  • Unschooling to University by Judy Arnall
  • College education
    • Ben’s sons are interested in attaining a liberal arts degree
  • Essential skills
    • Writing
    • Reading
    • Arithmetic
    • Logic or programming
    • Rhetoric and persuasion
  • The Almanack of Naval Ravikant by Eric Jorgenson
  • Music family routine
    • Singing and playing guitar and piano
  • Light sound self-hypnosis and meditation devices

-Ben’s proudest moment as a parent…1:25:35

  • When his sons emerged from their rite of passage into adolescence after the 5-day survival course in the woods

-And much more…

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32 Questions For Boundless Parenting

The following questions were posed to Dan and Merily Pompa, and the rest of the wise parents interviewed for my upcoming book, Boundless Parenting.

  1. How many children do you have, how old are they, what is their profession or passion, and why, in particular, are you proud of them?
  2. Are there any elements of your parenting approach that you would consider to be particularly unique?
  3. What books, systems, models, or resources do you rely heavily upon or consider to be indispensable in your own parenting?
  4. What traditions, habits, routines, or rituals are most important, memorable, or formative for your family?
  5. What rites of passage or significant moments of maturation to adolescence or adulthood have your children experienced, if any?
  6. Who do you look up to as parenting mentors?
  7. What have you taught your children about raising their own children?
  8. Do you have any philosophies or strategies for educating your children outside of traditional school, such as homeschooling, unschooling, self-directed education, or other alternatives, creative, or “outside-the-box” forms of education?
  9. What has been your proudest moment as a parent, and why?
  10. What do you wish you had known before first becoming a parent?
  11. Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome as a parent? If so, how have you coped with that?
  12. How have you achieved a balance between mentoring and passing on wisdom without “living vicariously” through your children?
  13. Have you ever faced any big parenting decisions that kept you awake at night worrying or that you feared you would mess up?
  14. What do you regret, if anything, from your experience as a parent?
  15. What is the biggest mistake you have made as a parent?
  16. What, if anything, from your parenting experience would you go back and change or improve?
  17. If you had multiple children, what did you think was right at the time with one child that you then went back and changed with the next child or future children?
  18. Have you ever sensed or feared that your children would grow up too different or weird as a result of any “outside-the-box” parenting approaches you used? If so, how did you deal with that?
  19. Have you ever differed from your spouse on parenting principles, techniques, or approaches? If so, how did you manage that?
  20. Warning: This question is long but important: As a parent, have you ever felt conflicted about wanting to share a book, teaching, resource, or method with your children as a means of impacting their future success, but feared that it might “overload” them, especially at their age? If so, how did you balance bestowing this valuable knowledge to your child without causing them to worry too much about adult concerns? How did you decide when to just “let a kid be a kid” versus nudging them towards responsible adulthood and the attainment of valuable wisdom?
  21. How have you balanced being a present, engaged parent while preserving your own identity, taking time for your own self-care, tending to your career, or pursuing other interests that did not include your children?
  22. How have you engaged in one-on-one time or created space for dedicated time with your child, especially if you have more than one child?
  23. If your children have grown up and moved out of your house, what strategies have you found most helpful for maintaining and building your relationship with them?
  24. If your children have grown up and moved out of your house, do you often miss them, fear for them, or think of them? If so, how have you coped with any loneliness or desire for their presence?
  25. Do you have non-negotiable rules for your children?
  26. How have you disciplined your children, if at all?
  27. How have you helped your child to establish responsibly, moderated, or conscientious consumption or use of books, media, entertainment, screen time, and social media? This is not my favorite question because the focus on “limiting screen time” seems a bit blown out of proportion these days and I think causes kids to get obsessed with the “forbidden fruit” of screen time, but it seems to be on the minds of many parents today, so I’d be remiss not to include it.
  28. Have you emphasized or encouraged any health, fitness, or healthy eating principles with your children? If so, what has seemed to work well?
  29. If your child or children could inscribe anything on your gravestone, what would you hope that they would write? What would you most want them to remember about you?
  30. What do you most want to be remembered for as a parent?
  31. What do you think your child or children would say is their fondest memory of being raised by you?
  32. What message for parents would you put on a billboard?

Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

– Ben Greenfield:

– Books:

– Other Resources:

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