The One Parenting Hack That Makes Mindy Kaling Feel Like A ‘Sorceress’


Parents love to rag on “CoComelon,” yet the animated kids show is consistently among the top-streamed programs on Netflix.

Even celebrities aren’t immune to “CoComelon’s” entrancing effects. Writer, actor and producer Mindy Kaling recently told HuffPost that there is one “CoComelon” song that instantly calms her 1-year-old if he’s having a hard time.

“There’s a ‘CoComelon’ rendition of ‘Wheels on the Bus’ that, if my son is fussy or hungry or crying in the car, we turn it on and it’s like I’m a sorceress and he is completely fine,” she said at an event this week in Los Angeles that she co-hosted with Zelle. “I’ve never seen the show; we just listen to the music and he’s obsessed. It’s like the way a certain type of woman talks about the transformative effect of Barbra Streisand in their youth, that’s what ‘CoComelon’ is for my son. It calms him and he is just, like, serene.”

Even as a TV writer, Kaling is cognizant of screen time limits for her kids — though, admittedly, “It feels a little weird to be like, ‘No television for my children, my chosen profession,’” she said. Her 4-year-old daughter watches some TV in the evenings, and Kaling makes use of screen time when traveling as a sanity-saving tool.

“On trips, literally all bets are off, my daughter has her tablet on the plane and she knows that it’s only for traveling and then she doesn’t have it outside of that,” she said.

In her regular day-to-day life, Kaling said that, as a working, single parent, she is deliberate about creating daily rituals with her kids.

“I get [my daughter] up in the morning, I push her on the swing when I come back from work and let her talk about her day or not talk about it and just be quiet, and I read her books at night. Knowing that I have those three things and letting the people in my life know that those are the three things that I am not going to miss, is great,” she said.

But, inevitably, there are days when Kaling has an early morning and has to forgo one of those rituals. In this stage of her life, she has learned to let go of the mom guilt.

“Letting go of guilt is something I’ve become much more comfortable doing now at [age] 42,” she said.

Another thing Kaling has been deliberate about in balancing work and parenthood is forming friendships with the parents of her kids’ friends.

“I really made the effort to say like, ‘There’s got to be some amazing women and men who are parents of my kids’ friends, and wouldn’t it be great if I loved them?’” she said. “Again, I’m in my 40s, so I have my set friends, but I made the commitment to doing that and it’s really made life for my kids much better. Playdates aren’t this thing like, ‘Ugh. I’m having to deal with some random person I don’t know’; I look forward to them because I’ve actively made friends with the parents.”

Plus — for someone with her hand in multiple projects at any given time — the multitasking can’t hurt.

“Now I’m, like, multitasking friendship with something good for my kids,” she added.

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