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I recently asked my Facebook friends for their favorite quotes about parenthood, one of which really grabbed my attention: “Be careful how you speak to your children; one day it will become their inner voice” (Peggy O’Mara).

Jewish tradition is very clear about the importance of wise, compassionate speech. Some of us may have heard of the prohibition against lashon hara, which tends to be commonly translated as “gossip.” However, the phrase sh’mirat ha’lashon, or “guarding the tongue,” may offer additional guidance to parents trying to figure out the most empathic and effective ways to speak with, and to, their children.

You can read more about my thoughts on mindful parenting and how we speak to our children over on JewishBoston.com.