Guest post by Ivana Davies from Find Your Mom Tribe blog.
Every parent you ask will tell you that among all the jobs that they have had, being a parent requires the most work, if you want to raise your kid right.
Now, there is no scheme or a rule book you will follow that will make a good parent out of you or ensure you raise a good kid.
You will make mistakes. You’ll do things in the best of your faith and it will end up with the wrong results. And that’s okay. Don’t beat yourself up. Making mistakes is normal. You can’t avoid them.
But what you can do is be attentive, notice what you did wrong and do all in your power to never repeat those mistakes.
However, there is a pattern that can help you in raising healthy and positive child. There is a list of things from which your kids can only benefit.
These are the habits you should try to develop in case you want to raise mentally strong and responsible child:
It’s essential to be open and communicate with our children every day. Speak with them about their school, friends, likes, and dislikes. Effective communication starts when we offer a safe place for our children to desire a connection. When we ask questions, it shows that we care about our kids, and they are more likely to feel appreciated.
2. Quality Time
We should always strive to spend quality time with our kids. By doing so, it’ll be easier to observe behavior patterns and genuinely get to know our children for who they are. If we understand our child’s behavior, we can offer comfort when we notice signs of stress. Being understanding further opens the door of communication.
3. Allow Growth
Let children grow. As parents, we hate to see our children suffer. But growing is part of the process. We can show our trust by allowing them limited autonomy. Although there will always be a moment when our children may need our help, teach them about hard work and adversity.
For example, if my daughter practiced for the cheerleading team every day, by taking dance, attending practices, but still didn’t make the team, it’s not a good idea to speak to the coach of the squad to explain how hard my child has worked.
A smart solution would be to explain to my child that although she’s worked hard and deserves it, sometimes life doesn’t go the way we planned. I should give her encouragement and advice that will help her succeed the next year. This strategy teaches children early on how to deal with rejection and adversity healthily.
4. Unconditional Love
Our love for our children should be limitless. They shouldn’t have to earn our respect by meeting certain expectations. It is imperative to show our children that we love them regardless of achievements and success. We should also offer support through their perseverance and failures. Above all, love should be highly apparent and reflective through our actions.
As a parent, we don’t always agree with every decision our child makes. However, we should learn to respect their choices, even if it isn’t one that we would make ourselves. By doing so, we are teaching that there are consequences to every action.
6. Create Flexibility
Research shows that an overly strict parent contributes to the insecurities of their children. It reduces a child’s self-esteem and self-worth. Additionally, statistics show that strict parents are more likely to encourage their children to break the rules.
As parents, it’s reasonable to enforce rules. But being overly strict can be suffocating, so consider democratic parenting instead. We should give our children some flexibility. Flexibility allows children to learn from their mistakes, which leads to better decision making in the future.
This is a great way to allow growth and to let our kids prove themselves. Flexibility inspires confidence, and confidence encourages self-esteem.
7. Free Time
Highly effective parents deserve free time. It’s okay to take a break and spend time away from our kids. This process allows us to become better parents. When we’re allowed to recharge, we bring happiness, love, and a refreshing atmosphere to our home. So, as parents, we should allow ourselves to renew our energy through free time and self-care.
8. Become a Team
Highly effective parenting stems from our learning to be teammates with our partners. We can’t do everything by ourselves. We should figure out what works best for our significant others and become an asset. Stick together on rules and values to prevent friction when a problem arises. The Center for Economic Research describes it as Tag-Team parenting.
9. Stress Management
Effective parenting manifests when we learn how to control our stress levels. Having a set schedule can help us become less prone to stress. We can wake up a bit earlier, plan, or organize our schedules. Whatever it may be, when we are at peace, this energy transfers to our kids. Stress management is known to have a positive impact on our children’s lives.
10. Set Consistent Rules
When we set rules, our kids understand that there are boundaries. However, we should set clear rules that are consistent and easy to follow. If we give a specific time for curfew, it should remain that way. Don’t reinforce lousy behavior one day and discipline the next. Ultimately, consistent rules are more effective and will lead to more responsibility and satisfactory conduct.
11. Be Positive
We should always strive for positivity. When we’re optimistic and enthusiastic, it brings great joy to our homes. Use positive words and be supportive throughout difficult circumstances. Also, we must recognize the efforts of our children. This builds confidence, which enables them to thrive in all areas of their life.
12. Be an Example
Capable parents become role models and set examples for their children.
- Take them to shelters and feed people in need
- We could show them around our workplace and what we do for a living
- Volunteer at a nursing home
- Volunteer at a pet clinic/hospital
- Show documentaries and teach the importance of kindness
We should never do anything in front of our kids that we wouldn’t want them to replicate
Every day our actions should convey the message that we’re trying to instill within our kids. Angelina Jolie often travels to Africa with her children to complete mission work. Instead of telling them they should be charitable and give back, she’s actively showing them how to be philanthropic by letting them experience altruism.
13. Designate Chores
Kids will learn to be hardworking adults by completing hard work as children. By designating chores, we create a sense of responsibility. According to research, kids that complete chores are more likely to grow up as a more diligent and competent worker.
14. Have Patience
It’s normal to want everything to go as we planned. But patience is incredibly important when it comes to raising a family. We should always practice patience with our children. There may not be an instant change within our kids. However, if we’re patient, we’ll notice that our values and hard work are paying off.
There is a possibility and a great probability that some of the things are missed, but it’s up to you to discover what will work the best with your kid and to which habits of your will they respond best. Every child is different, so don’t follow rules blindly, observe and adapt.
There is one thing that will always be helpful though – make sure your kids know you do everything in their interest, for their own good and out of love.
My name is Ivana Davies and I’m an educator turned stay-at-home mom to a beautiful 7-year-old girl and a playful 5-year-old boy. Since I didn’t have a clue about raising kids, I had to learn it all in a hard way. I managed to find so much information online, and that inspired me to turn to blogging to share my experiences and struggles as a mom. Being a mom is not easy. In fact, it can sometimes be pretty isolating. My blog, Find Your Mom Tribe, is here to help you connect with other moms, as well as to share mom hacks, information, and tools to help you on this parenting journey. You can catch up with us on Facebook and Pinterest.