Parenting is a lot of work. And there is no right or wrong way to parent your child. However, a good parents needs to know their children. You need to be open so that you are the first person they reach out to when they are in trouble. Understanding your child is crucial to the relationship. Buying a gift for a 13-year-old girl or knowing what your child likes to do on weekends are questions you can only answer if you truly know your child. Here are tips that will help make parenting easier for you.
Know your child’s capabilities
We all have different strengths and weaknesses. Even if you excel at fitness or thinking strategically, your child may have different abilities. Understanding and recognizing your child’s strengths can go a long way in building confidence and self-esteem.
Do not use sarcasm
Although it may be tempting to mimic or use sarcasm when provoked, this type of anger does not help the situation and can make things much worse. State and maintain clear boundaries and enforce discipline with an even temper.
Focusing on what your child is doing right can be more effective than punishing them for wrong behavior. When your child understands that you know they are trying, they generally want to do more of that behavior. By rewarding good behavior, you can set an optimistic outlook for moving forward.
Limit media influence
While television and the internet are here to stay, it doesn’t mean your child should have free-range over screen time. Limiting social media interaction has been shown to help lower anxiety, especially in girls. Rather than restricting all forms of screen time, try using boundaries for phones, laptops, and televisions.
By paying attention to the positive things your child is doing, you can be present in a helpful way. When you put away your phone so that you can devote time to playing with just them, children know you care. Positive attention can come in many forms.
Similar to adults, all children are different. Just because other siblings may excel at one activity does not necessarily mean all children will be able to reach the same milestones at the same time. Even “positive” comparisons to other children such as “I’m so glad you don’t just sit around and watch TV all day like your friend,” can have a negative impact.
Accept a certain amount of chaos
Having children dramatically changes life for everyone involved. While you can plan for specific goals, there is bound to be an unexpected change. If going-with-the-flow isn’t your style, meditation or on-going exercise may help release tension.
Don’t give up
Although sometimes, it may be easy to give in to what a child wants if they are whining or continually asking for something, giving in does not set boundaries. Giving up on what you think is important can show a lack of care. If you are at a point where you feel like giving up, something needs to change.
Parenting is a difficult job. Since other parents are likely in a similar boat to you, finding the right group to talk to can make a huge difference. Support can be from a spouse, friends, or even a counselor. Early parenting can be incredibly hard for new parents that have not navigated this territory before.
Set a good example
Actions speak louder than words. If you want your child to show compassion and kindness, make sure you’re practicing what you preach. The best way for a child to follow your advice is sometimes to mimic it. This is true for any age.
Parenting can be a tough job for anyone. To better understand how to lead by example, support is positively encouraged. Although it can seem daunting to new parents, a few tips can make a huge difference.