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On the Outside Looking In

bottles of wine on a table


always get a little lost when shopping for wine. It’s so difficult not to be pulled to the eye-catching label on the bottle, rather than paying attention to what’s inside the bottle. The other day I was searching for a wine to pair with a special meal I was preparing for a celebration dinner. I discovered something helpful on the shelves … “shelf talkers,” small note cards hanging in front of the bottles that described the flavor and offered serving suggestions. Knowing nothing about wine, I appreciated the guidance. The cards helped guide me in the right direction by keeping me focused on the wine inside the bottles and not the labels on the outside! I was pleased to find a wine that paired well and brought out the best in my special dinner.

I was thinking how the cards that described what was inside the bottle remind me of the Circle of Security graphic (shown below). Sometimes when I see my child’s behavior and I am unsure of how to respond, I can use the COS graphic. Where is my child on the Circle? Top or bottom? Exploration or Connection? Cue or Miscue? Rather than looking and responding to the behavior, I can find guidance from the graphic to help me see beyond the outside behavior and find the need that is inside my child. When I figure it out where my child is on the Circle, I can then offer the response that my child needs. When my response pairs well with my child’s need, I am better able to support my child, and together we find our way toward more security in our relationship.

the Circle of Security graphic

I invite you to share with me your comments, reflections, Circle stories and experiences with Circle of Security Parenting. Your submissions may be used in future blog posts, with all identifying information excluded, unless you specifically request to be identified. Contact me at brooke[at]circleofsecurityinternational[dot]com.