Being a parent is one of the most fulfilling experiences a person can have but we all know that being a parent, especially a good one, is no cake walk!!
Every parent wishes to be the best and is constantly aspiring to raise their kids as sensitive, self confident, decent human beings. Parenting is perhaps the most extensively researched area in all of social sciences and with good reason. A child’s behavior is a direct reflection of their relationship with their parent.
There can’t be any specific rules for parenting. It is in fact an interpersonal relationship between parents and children. Most parents act on their gut reactions or use the same techniques used by their own. These may or may not be effective parenting skills as every parent’s instinct is different.
It’s important to understand that a relationship with a child is quite similar to that with an adult. It is highly personal and what works between few parents and children may not be the same for certain parents and children.
Read on for some valuable insights that can help bring up a child with values of empathy, honesty, self-reliance, self-control, kindness, cooperation, and cheerfulness.
Learn to listen
We tend to have knee-jerk reactions when it comes to our kids. Sometimes we automatically say no, sometimes we half listen and interrupt them causing the real communication to get lost in translation. On the flip side, this does not mean we need to abandon everything and be all ears to what a child is saying but communication is important. Take some time out from your daily distractions to really sit down and listen to what your child has to say.
Be involved in your child’s life
Craft fairs, plays or even home bake sales, the key to being a successful parent is being 100% involved, physically and mentally, in a child’s life. This takes hard work and commitment. Encourage, support and assist kids in their activities but never do the work for them, else your child will never learn. While it’s important to be there for your child, you also need to give them an opportunity to be independent. Encouraging self-reliance helps children develop individuality and a sense of self-direction.
Set the rules
The good cop bad cop routine is needed with children as well, so set some ground rules. The set of laws your child imbibes from you are going to shape his future. If you don’t regulate your child’s behavior when he is young, he will have a hard time trying to administer self-control when he is older and you aren’t around. Parents should always be able to answer these three questions: Where is my child? Who is with my child? What is my child doing? While you set ground rules make sure to explain your reasoning for it. Parents tend to over explain to children and under explain to teenagers which results in dispute.
Treat your child with respect
Giving respect to get respect also holds true for children. If you want your child to revere you, extend the same courtesies to him. Speak politely, treat him kindly, respect his opinion and be attentive when he is speaking to you. Children’s behavior towards others is shaped by the way their parents treat them.
Bias and preferential treatment must be avoided in parenting. If you have more than one child you should refrain from exhibiting partiality towards a particular one. It’s vital that all children feel that they are loved equally. Also, comparison between siblings, choosing sides when they argue is unfair. Try and be neutral while settling issues between kids.