Parenthood is a journey those with young ones must take and make their own path as they relish in it. In this feature, we’ll look at ten things that great parents often do.
- Affirm Yourself To be a great parent, always do what you say you are going to do. There are two ways to go about this: avoid making rules that you cannot enforce and ensure you keep your commitments. Show your kids how important affirming themselves is as this builds respect and trust.
- Point out the Good in the Child’s Action When you find or discover your kids doing something good, point out to them what you specifically liked in their act. Deep down, children want to please their parents and will strive to do constructive actions in order to receive some positive feedback from them. Unfortunately, most parents are quick to point out children weaknesses or where they need to improve instead of focusing on the good aspects.
It is critical that parents balance the messages they send out to their children and make them feel appreciated at every turn, just like adults.
- Teach Your Kids of Natural Consequences To be a great parent, it is also essential that you let your children experience the natural consequences of their actions or choices. Unless it is a safety or health risk, letting them experience it is an integral part of learning. This also minimizes power struggles as you won’t have to intervene.
- Be A Guide Another important aspect of becoming a great parent is showing your kids the way. Instead of punishing them whenever they do wrong as it’ll only suppress bad behavior, hold a discussion with them and let them know what they’ve done isn’t good. In case of good behavior, reward them with praise and encourage them to continue in that path.
- Don’t Over-function Your Kids Indicate to them that making mistakes and experiencing disappointments and “failure” is part of life experiences. Don’t overbear them as this provides an opportunity for them to learn and practice coping skills.
- Practice Touching them Positively A parent’s positive touch i.e., hugs, cuddles and loving pats are critical to children’s development. Take your time to give your kids these positive touches, for the older children this might be tricky but a loving pat on the back will do.
- Distinguish Between Kids and Their Behavior It is prudent that you indicate through words and actions that you love your children, even if they tend to exhibit bad behaviors. If they misbehave, instead of asking “what’s wrong with you?’’ simply say “I don’t like that behavior, because…” The former statement introduces shame and guilt, which tends to impact kids negatively, while the latter is an approach based on empathy and reason.
Also, pay attention to your non-verbal cues as they can indicate a different meaning to your words.
- Discipline Kids When They are not Hungry or Tired Quite often, when kids are hungry or tired, they lose focus on your efforts in disciplining them. Since the goal of discipline is learning, ensure they’re in a proper physical and mental state.
- Impact the “3 P’s” in Your Kids Teach your kids the 3 P’s: patience, practice, and perseverance as the cornerstone of success.
- Help them ‘Feel’ and Wisely Choose their Actions Coach them how to respond, instead of reacting, this is the most important skill our children need to learn.
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