As a CranioSacral Therapist, Physiotherapist and Parent Educator, Shelley Clarke is passionate about the body, nervous system and the health and wellbeing of children and families. She works with families to help parents foster deeper connections with their children, supporting parents’ mental, emotional and physical wellbeing through bodywork, education and listening. By helping parents understand their child’s behaviour, families are able to experience more joy, laughter and connection in their relationships. Here, she talks to The Natural Parent Magazine about the inspiration behind Shelley Clarke – Mind Body Parenting and her desire to help families make positive changes in their lives.
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
I am passionate about helping families understand their child’s behaviour and to connect and enjoy parenting. My passion to help other families really started out of my own struggles as a new mother. I was exhausted, I had two children, sleep was non existent and we were seeing some really challenging behaviours that weren’t shifting with all the traditional approaches. I was not really enjoying being a parent and thought there must be more to this parenting gig. I started searching for approaches and philosophies that had the heart of the child at their core but also met the needs of everyone in the family. I found Aware Parenting and Hand in Hand parenting and these approaches really resonated. We started listening to our children and using the play ideas and our whole family life changed. Parenting became more enjoyable and much more connected.
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
I wasn’t really looking to support families with their parenting. I am also a physiotherapist and CranioSacral therapist so I see children and adults in my own clinic two days a week in Adelaide, but more and more I had people asking me about parenting and what they should do about this situation. I would listen and most of the time they would come up with their own solution. Slowly I started to offer some online parenting support and it has just grown from there.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
I think the biggest breakthrough came when I actually started to realise that I can help parents and that things really shift when they understand their child’s nervous system and what is going on for their child. Families really change when they understand this information and I think when I realised that I can actually help, it was about me stepping into a new direction for my business.
Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?
I find it challenging. I have three children and I work in my clinic two days a week, but then I do admin and other things around my children. It is a constant balancing act. I check in regularly with myself to make sure it feels like a good balance between the two. Sometimes it is work heavy, sometimes family heavy but this is just life. I have had to learn to trust the process and trust my own timing of things.