Aug 31 , 2021
Parenting is one of the most challenging jobs you will have to do. Parenting is a rollercoaster where no two rides are the same. It has good days and bad days. A good parent aspires to make decisions in the best interest of their child. However, whether the decision is good or not can only be seen in retrospect.
Unlike the contrary belief, a good parent is not perfect. No parent is perfect, and no child is perfect. It is essential to keep this in mind when setting your expectations. Successful parenting does not mean you have achieved perfection. It means that one should set high standards for themselves and then work towards achieving them. One should aim to be a good human being so as to lead by example.
Below are 10 key factors of parenting:
- Be a good role model
Don’t just tell them what you want them to do. Show them. Walk the walk. Human beings learn best by imitation. We are programmed so that we tend to copy other’s actions in order to understand them and incorporate them as our own. Children, in particular, observe everything their parents do very closely.
- Be expressive
There is nothing known as showing too much love. Loving does not equate to spoiling. If you choose to give them materialistic things, leniency, low expectation, etc., that is when you will have a spoilt child. Loving your child simply means hugs, spending more time with them, attentively listening to them, and taking them seriously every day. Doing so will release a hormone called oxytocin which brings a deep sense of calm and emotional warmth to a child.
- Be consistent with your discipline
Discipline is essential in every household. The goal is to help kids learn what acceptable behaviors are and practice self-restraint. They may test the limits you establish, but they need those limits to grow into respectable, responsible adults. However, be consistent in the rules you establish. If you keep changing the rules, it may confuse the child, and in turn, you may lose your credibility.
- Make time
This is the best way to show you love your kids and, quite frankly, the hardest. Try to squeeze in a quick breakfast before you all head off to your respective workplaces, or take a 10-minute walk after dinner. Kids often want attention from their parents. If they don’t get it, they frequently misbehave in order to be noticed.
- Make communication a priority
You can’t expect your kids to do everything just because you ‘said so.’ They deserve explanations just as much as adults. If we don’t give them explanations, they will begin to wonder if our values have any basis at all. Parents who usually reason with their kids give space for more conversation and give room for exchanging knowledge.
- Let your child be independent
Setting limits helps develop self-control but encourage some form of independence to enable your child to develop a sense of self-direction. To be a successful human being, you need a little bit of both, some control and some independence.
- Don’t be harsh
Do NOT hit your child under any circumstances. Studies show that children that are spanked or slapped are more prone to inflict violence on other children. They use aggression to solve issues.
- Give respect
The best way to get respect is to give respect. Give your child the courtesies you would offer to anyone else. Don’t speak over them. Talk softly. Respect their opinions.
- Keep your own well-being a priority
As parents, you need relief too in order to work at your optimum capacity. Frequently, your other relationships or your health takes a back seat when a child is born. Prioritize yourself too at times in order to stay content.
- Keep reading
Keep educating yourself regarding new hacks and tips on parenting. Read books on psychology and the sociology of children to keep yourself up to date with any recent findings that may help you better your techniques.
All in all, strive to be a good parent, and don’t be too hard on yourself.
Dr. Sharon Fried Buchalter Ph.D., is a distinguished clinical psychologist, life coach, and public speaker who has worked as a Marriage and Family Therapist and clinical social worker. She received the highest accreditation as a board-certified diplomate-fellow in advanced child and adolescent psychology. She has spent her lifetime educating, enlightening and empowering parents and children of all ages.
She has developed revolutionary tools to help couples, parents, and families achieve happiness and success. Her first book Children Are People Too, provides eight essential steps designed to strengthen families and empower parents to be their own child's life coach and mentor. Her second book New Parents Are People Too, provides relationship advice for couples entering parenthood for the first time.
She is also the founder and owner of Products On The Go and Little Toes.