As enjoyable and rewarding as parenting can be, there are many times when it is frustrating, challenging and overwhelming, to say the least. It is basically a learn as you go process, however; you could always use helpful information along the way! The following tips are designed to hone your parenting skills and make the job a little easier.
1. Discipline without violence. Although some still consider hitting acceptable, an overwhelming majority of psychologists defer to the negative consequences of it. Your child may grow up with anxiety issues when hit or learn that violence is the best way to handle a frustrating situation. Even yelling too much, called hyper-correction by professionals, can leave permanent emotional scars on your children, leading to serious problems for them later in life.
2. Avoiding giving in too much. It can be hard to say no to your kids, especially if you feel guilty about other things, such as working late or never having money leftover for them after paying all the bills each month. Consider though that in life, they won’t always get their way and it’s essential that they learn to deal with that fact appropriately and long before they head out on their own. Set your limits and stick with them.
3. Always reach for more patience. Probably the most surprising thing parents eventually realize is the awesome amount of patience they truly have! However; there are times when your patience will be tested and it’s important to keep your cool to produce a favorable outcome as well as set a great example. If you ever find yourself boiling over, step away from the scene and compose yourself.
4. Discipline with consistency. Many parents allow circumstances to define the amount of discipline they employ and this is confusing to kids. Don’t be more tolerant simply because you are in a great mood or less tolerant because you are not. This will also encourage your kids to manipulate, which is counterproductive to the purpose of your rules to begin with.
5. Don’t put too much on them or push too hard. Understand the limitations of your children and that they are only human. Some kids really have a difficult time achieving higher grades or excelling at sports; don’t expect more than they are capable of and always encourage their efforts! Maybe you won’t raise the next Albert Einstein or Bill Gates, but you will have a kid that grows up with self-confidence and pride in who they truly are.
6. Get together often. Time is easily the best thing you can give your children, although it may be difficult to find in these busy times. Try to organize your working schedule so that you have regular time for family and fun. Make a point of going away every once in a while, even if it’s just a day trip somewhere. Let your kids know they are the most important aspect of your life.
7. Make sure they know you love them. No matter what age they are, it’s always great to see a parent and child exchange the words "I love you" to each other. Don’t reserve it for serious or sad times: say it every day! Let them know you love them with your entire being by expressing the sentiment in deeds, with words and as often as they need to be reminded!
Parenting is a great experience and it can go a lot smoother when you’ve got experienced advice under your belt! Hopefully you have found this article very useful and can apply the tips around your household. Keep learning and keep smiling; this is not a dress-rehearsal!