Raising children is a tough and rewarding job, but it’s also one that you may feel unprepared for.

These nine tips for raising children can make you feel more fulfilled.

How to Boost Your Child’s Self-Esteem

When children see themselves in their parents’ eyes, they begin to develop a sense of identity. Your kids will absorb your tone of voice and body language. The development of self esteem is influenced by your words and actions.

Praise accomplishments no matter how small. Leting kids take charge of their own lives will help them to feel strong and capable. Belittling remarks or comparing one child negatively with another can make them feel worthless.

Avoid using loaded words or statements. Commentary like “What an idiotic thing to do!” Comments like “What a stupid thing to do!” or “You behave more like a child than your little bro!” They can cause as much damage as physical blows.

Be compassionate and choose your words carefully. Tell your children that mistakes are inevitable and you love them even if you don’t like their behavior.

Catch Kids Being Good

How many times do you react negatively towards your children in a day? You may find that you criticize more than compliment. What would you think of a boss that gave you so much negative advice, even if the guidance was well-intentioned.

It’s more effective to praise kids for doing something good: “You made up your bed without asking — that’s fantastic!” I watched you play with your little sister, and you showed great patience. These statements are more likely to promote good behavior in the long term than repeated scolding.

Every day, find something to be grateful for. Your love, hugs and compliments will often be enough to reward. You will soon find that you are “growing more” of the behavior you want to see.

Establish limits and be consistent with your discipline

Every household needs to practice discipline. Discipline is meant to teach kids how to choose appropriate behaviors and develop self-control. Although they may try to push the boundaries you set for them, these limits are necessary in order for children to become responsible adults.

Establishing rules in the home helps children understand what you expect and help them develop self-control. You might set rules such as: no television before homework, no slapping, name-calling or hurtful teasing.

You may want to implement a system: you could give a warning and then follow it up with consequences, such as “time out” or a loss of privileges. Parents often make the mistake of not enforcing consequences. It’s not possible to ignore a child who talks back and then discipline them the next day. Consistency teaches children what you want.

Take Time to Spend with Your Children

Parents and children often find it difficult to spend time together, even for a simple family meal. There is probably nothing more that kids would want. You can get up 10 minutes early in the morning to eat breakfast together with your child, or you can leave the dishes on the sink after dinner and go for a walk. When children are not getting the attention that they desire from their parents, they often misbehave or act out to get noticed.

It is rewarding for many parents to plan time together with their children. Let your children decide what to do during a weekly “special night”. Consider other ways to communicate with your child — include a special note in their lunchbox or a small gift.

Teenagers need less attention from parents. Parents should be there for their teens when they express an interest in talking or participating in family activities. You can show your love for your teen by attending concerts, games and other family events.

Do not feel guilty about being a working parent. The little things that you do, like making popcorn, playing card, or window shopping, are what your children will remember.

Be a good role model

Watching their parents can teach young children a lot. They will take more of your cues the younger they are. Be careful before you snap at your child or yell in their face. Ask yourself: Would you want them to act that way when they are angry? You’re always being watched by your children. Children who are aggressive at home tend to be those children who have been influenced by their parents.

Show your children the traits that you want them to have: kindness, respect, friendship, honesty and tolerance. Exhibit unselfish behavior. Don’t expect a reward for doing things to help others. Thank people and give them compliments. Above all else, you should treat your children the same way you would like to be treated.

Prioritize communication

It’s not possible to expect children to “do” everything just because their parents “say so.” As much as adults, they want and deserve to be explained. Kids will start to question our motives and values if we don’t explain. Parents who talk to their children in a way that is non-judgmental allow them the opportunity to learn and understand.

Clarify your expectations. If you have a problem, explain it to your child, share your feelings and invite them to help you find a solution. Include consequences. Offer options and suggestions. Also, be open to the suggestions of your child. Negotiate. Children who are involved in the decision-making process will be more motivated to follow through.

Be flexible and willing to adjust your parenting style

You may have unrealistic expectations if you feel let down by your child. If you are a parent who believes in “shoulds”, such as “My child should have been potty trained by now”, it may be helpful to do some research or talk to other parents.

You can change a child’s behavior by changing their environment. You may find that you are constantly telling your 2-year old “no”. Try to change your environment so there are fewer restrictions. It will make you both happier.

You’ll need to adjust your parenting style as your child grows. What works for your child today may not work in a few years.

Teenagers look to their peers as role models more than their parents. Continue to give your teen guidance, encouragement and discipline, while still allowing them to gain more independence. Seize every opportunity to connect!

Show Your Love is Unconditional

You are responsible as a parent for correcting your children and guiding them. How you communicate your corrective guidance can make a big difference to how the child will receive it.

Avoid blaming or criticizing your child. This can cause resentment and damage their self-esteem. Even when disciplining children, you should try to encourage and nurture them. You want them to know that you love them no matter what.

As a parent, you need to know your own needs and limitations.

You are a flawed parent. As a leader of a family, you have both strengths and weaknesses. Recognize and appreciate your strengths — “I’m loving and dedicated.” Make a commitment to improve your weaknesses. “I must be more disciplined.” You, your partner and your children should have realistic expectations. Be forgiving to yourself. You don’t need all the answers.

Try to make parenting manageable. Concentrate on areas that require the most attention, rather than attempting to tackle everything at once. When you are burned out, admit it. Spend time doing things that make you happy.

You are not selfish if you focus on your own needs. You are simply showing that you care for your own wellbeing, another important virtue to teach your children.

By admin

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