You are highly welcome to our Authors’ Corner. Today’s interview is our maiden edition of the Authors’ Corner and we are so delighted to have you here. In this awesome interview, ABIMBOLA OLAYINKA shares the impactful and educative story of her journey to becoming an author, how she wrote her books, the great feats she has recorded through her books and how peaceful parenting can be achieved in every home and family. Join us as we learn more about parenting from the advocate of PEACEFUL PARENTING.
Please, can you tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Abimbola Olayinka, popularly known as “The Peaceful Parenting Coach”. I am the founder of “Galparenting Place” and creator of “Peaceful Parenting Hub”.
It gives me profound joy to equip parents and leaders with the requisites to live and function peacefully in their various life expressions. I teach them to understand how to be at peace with themselves so that they can live at peace with their environment and everyone in it, keeping in mind that you cannot give what you don’t have — it is from what you have inside you that you’ll extend to those around you.
When did you first realize that you wanted to be an author and why did you decide to be one?
I have always loved to write as a child. I scribbled a lot, wrote down things on my mini diary (I had a mini journal then), and all of that. But it became serious about four (4) years ago. I would write, and I would stop. So, exactly three years ago, the topic, “Peaceful Parenting,” came to mind as, of course, I was already on the journey/pathway of teaching parents and leaders the way of peace, and I knew that it was beyond just preaching it. I also knew that I needed to put content down, handy and pleasing to the eyes, to attract readers to adopt the new way of raising a wholesome child in this 21st century.
Can you tell us a bit about your journey as an author. What were the struggles or challenges you’ve encountered and surmounted on the journey?
Creating the time to write in this hectic city of Lagos is not a walk in the park. You know, sitting down, taking my pen or sitting in front of the computer and typing was a struggle because of the various activities that take up my energy. Another challenge I faced was meeting a credible publisher; it was a major issue. Of course, there are various international publishers, but I was convinced that there should be local publishers as well who can do even better than their international counterparts.
How did you come across TEBEBA Publishing Firm and why did you choose TEBEBA as your publisher?
Wow! It was through a word of mouth. A friend of mine, sister and colleague in the industry, Coach Oluwakemi Ogunkoya, introduced me to TEBEBA. We started up the journey almost at the same time but she decided to test the waters first; she decided to bell the cat (smiles). We preferred TEBEBA because of his excellence, yeah! And you know, we got good reviews about him. To be honest, Emmanuel (Olatunji) is actually very patient. He takes his time. He wants to listen to you. He will give you the professional advice without hounding you and all. So, I think all these contributed to the making of that decision.
Now let’s talk about your books, “Peaceful Parenting,” “Emotions and Parenting” and “Why Do Children Lie?”. What inspired you to write these books?
If you know me very well, you will understand that I love kids and take them to heart. I’m certain that you also know the rate at which our peace, security and discipline has been swept under the carpet, and our moral value has nosedived into the sea. I don’t know why they all eroded. So, I felt the need to get closer to the production house of the society, to children, most importantly, and to transform the strength and energy in parents.
I know that it is impossible to parent with peace without deepening your own peace, which brought about the birthing of “Peaceful Parenting”. And as you know also, our peace is tied to our emotions, i.e., our ability to act emotionally — which brought about the birthing of “Emotions and Parenting”.
And for “Why Do Children Lie?”
I have a lot of clients who say, “Mrs Olayinka, I don’t know why my children lie?” or “I give them a lot of attention, I listen to them, still they lie.” Most parents don’t know they are a major contributor to this negative attributes and behaviour of their children. So, I thought, “let me pen this down and enlighten parents the more”. The book was thus written for parents to give insight into their own actions, which also contributes negatively to the negative reaction of their children.
What are your books about? And who are they for?
Majority of my books are for everyone. Because, whether you are an adult, you interact with children; whether you are a parent, you interact with children. And there are some values in it as well that you actually take to your workplace because there is this thing about the family system that is synonymous to an organisational system. So, a majority of my books are for everyone and works everywhere: in spiritual places, in schools, in the society and in the community.
What are the various lies children tell and how can they be stopped? What roles do parents need to play in this? What causes children to lie?
A lot of things cause children to lie. However, lying in children is normal at the beginning but the way you handle it will serve to either amplify or alleviate it. So, you know, your own approach to it will build the way for the lie. It will be the pathway to the positive or negative expression of the response from the child. Lies can be stopped, like I said, depending on the parents’ reaction to it.
What’s your take about parents spanking a child, especially if the child has obviously done what is wrong?
I don’t believe in corporal punishment. Everyone around me understands that; you cannot tell me you love me by beating me. This is a wrong narrative that has been handed to us, that you can only correct a child by beating that child. I don’t like corporal punishment or think it to be necessary. I don’t like when a parent consciously and purposely inflicts pain on a child because he/she wants to teach that child the right way. No!
How does emotion affect parenting style?
You know, who we are will always reflect in every area of our lives, and our actions or behaviour per time is dependent on our state of mind. So, if we can understand ourselves and our emotions, label our triggers and our emotions, and we are able to respond accordingly, I don’t think we’ll be able to inflict pains or rant anyhow in front of our children or anyone around us.
What causes rebellious attitude in children and what advice do you have for the parents of such children?
It is same thing we’re talking about. Just like the lies, children become rebellious when they see that their parents are manipulative or when they stay in an unhealthy family climate. They see that their parents don’t trust them. They can’t own their voice. Hence the need to develop an attitude that would buffer the bad behaviour of their parents — it is a bad behaviour if you can’t allow your children own their voice in their parents’ own house.
My advice to parents is that they should respect themselves, so that they can respect their children. Give the children the opportunity to talk and draw close to you; listen to them, understand them and know that they also have emotional needs.
What has been your most memorable moment so far while working on your book project?
Sitting down and writing my points or highlights usually take me down the memory lane. It’s been a memorable time, quite truthfully, which is why I still enjoy to write.
What is your muse, where do you get your ideas whenever you want to begin a book project?
From my everyday activities; the environment. There is this anchor I lay hold of, which lights up the spark and triggers the ideas.
As an experienced author, what advice do you have for someone who wants to get his/her book published?
First, get a publisher — a very good one. You can write any thing as long as you’re dropping nuggets, wisdom, but your publisher can either make or mar your books. So, get an outstanding publisher like TEBEBA Publishing.
Which authors do you admire?
There are quite a lot of them that I admire. But the writing style of Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish, especially in their book, “How to Talk so Kids will Listen and Listen so Kids will Talk” is amazing. You know, when an author can understand the mind of his/her readers and the readers can easily grasp the mind of the author by reading the author’s books, the process is phenomenal. I love John Maxwell’s style of writing, Michelle Obama’s and then, the author of The Leadership Guardian, Kemi Ogunkoya, has a wonderful style of writing, which I also love.
What is the best piece of advice you have received as an author?
Your pen is your tool, yeah. As an author, there’s nothing you cannot do with your pen.
Do you intend to write more books? Why?
Yeah. Because I want to reach out to more, a task of which I can’t do alone. And also because my books can get to where I cannot get to. Thanks to my publisher, Emmanuel (Olatunji), you can now download online or buy the hard copy; both go a long way.
Where and how can we purchase your books?
My books can be purchased anywhere. They’re on Amazon and on all the major online stores. We have hard copies on sales in Abuja, Lagos, Port-Harcourt and Ibadan. And also, on TEBEBA Books, an online Bookstore.
What are your final words to the audience?
Dear parents/ leaders out there, be reminded kindly that the peace you wish to see in anyone around you begins with you”.
Understand yourself and know your triggers. Get what makes you thick so that you can be able to manage your emotions effectively for optimal functioning in life.
Peace begins with you.
Thank you very much.
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