Being a parent is no cake walk! Period!! No matter what everyone says, parenting is a lot of work. It totally sucks out your energy.
No matter how strong or calm of a person you believe you are, parenting can be an overwhelming task. It can catch the strongest of person without guard.
Whether you are a new mom or a seasoned one with more than one kid, parenting could be overwhelming at times.
After all, it is not always possible to stay calm and collected when tantrums are being thrown at you. It is not possible to always pick up after others all the time. I know, it is very hard to clean other people’s mess. ALL THE TIME. But then, if you have been doing it without complains or any monetary rewards, then welcome to the world of parenting.
As much as the “parenting job” is without any monetary benefits, it is very, very rewarding. Nothing else can match the joy and happiness of being a parent. To be able to have little munchkins who turn our life a whole 360 degrees is pretty amazing.
Just imagine, how empty our lives would have been without our kids. God has indeed blessed us with the most precious of gifts.
So to get the most out of the being a parent, I list down what I feel are the 5 most important parenting tips to be a successful parent.
1.Spend Quality Time
In today’s world where we have started communicating via internet within our own homes, it is imperative we spend some quality time with our kids. Our kids need our undivided attention, love and care no matter how old they are. They need the hugs and kisses to assure them that parents are always there for them.
Take them out to parks and play together. To an ice cream shop where both of you can catch up what happened over the week at school. Or simply play a board game with your kid with your phone in silent.
And please SWITCH OFF THAT WIFI when you are spending time with your kid. You do not want to be distracted by the latest message on the WhatsApp group just when your kid is beginning to share their feelings.
Be distraction free and be there for your child.
2. Never Compare
This is one of the cardinal sins that most of the parents commit. There is always that comparison with the other kid. The kid who got better grades in school, the kid who got selected for the school soccer team. Even worse, comparing between your own children.
If you have more than one kid, and one is better behaved than the other, then you can surely expect these comments from yourself.
“Why can’t you behave like your brother?”
“Why don’t you learn something from your sister?”
“When your sibling is content with one cookie, why can’t you be?”
“Why can’t you play by yourself just like your sibling?”
Imagining the number of times you have said this to your child. If you are guilty of it, then PLEASE STOP. Never ever compare your child with anyone else. Even if that is your other child. Each child is different and will need different parenting technique. But comparison will never yield any positive results.
3. Listen More, Lecture Less
I, myself, am guilty of this. As parents, we tend to lecture more our kids about being righteous. More than listening to what your child is feeling, we tend to offer advises to our child even if your child is in no mood to listen.
There is always a time and place to teach your child the difference between right and wrong. But that time is not ALL THE TIME. Sometimes all your child needs is a patient ear to understand what they are trying to communicate.
Do not be judgement and jump to conclusions before hearing out the entire thing. The more you listen, more you will find your child opening up to their emotions and feelings.
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4. Set a good example
How easy it is to preach rather than practice. Set a good example to your child to follow. Rather than always lecturing the dos and don’ts of life, show them by being a practical example.
If you do not want your child to lie, do not call in sick to the office while you watch a movie at home in front of your kid. Don’t swear at your fellow motorist for cutting you in the lane, if you do not want your kid to swear.
Yes, it is as simple as that. If you do not want your child behave in a certain way, do not do it yourself and expect them to not to follow you. The younger the child, the more impact of the family it has on them.
So always try to set a good example that you would like your child to follow.
5. Set Firm House Rules
This is another area which most of the parents struggle with. We set the ground rules, but never follow them up. When you do not follow with the consequences, you are giving a signal to the child, that it is ok to break the rules.
Set rules that are fair, easy and firm. Do not set up rules that are bound to fail. Set them according to their age and temperament. And be fair in setting the rules with all the kids. Do not favor one child with rules over the other.
Do not make rules that are too hard to follow through. Set them up easy that it is achievable both for you and your child.
Once you have set the rules, stick your ground. No matter, how difficult it is to follow through, but be firm. You will find lot of whining and pleading the initial few times. But as you start enforcing the rules in a calm and firm manner, your child will get the signal.
And finally, love them with all your heart. Remember they are not going to be small for long. They will not need your parenting one day. So just enjoy with them while you can without wasting your precious time.
Until next time,