How Do You Develop Good Parenting Skills?

Being a parent is one of the most difficult and most rewarding jobs out there — and one that you might not feel fully qualified for. But fret not, for we have got your back. The shares five tips for raising children that should help you feel more fulfilled as a parent.

Ready? Let’s start!

Tip #1: Boost Your Child’s Self-Esteem

A child’s sense of self starts developing in the early formative years when they start to see themselves through the eyes of their parents. Babies already start noticing and absorbing your body language, voice tone, and every expression you make. How you act and speak as a parent in their presence already contributes hugely to their developing self-esteem.

Praising children for a job well done will make them feel proud, thus giving them the confidence to do things independently. On the other hand, making light of their achievements or comparing them unfavorably with other kids can make them feel worthless.

Avoid being too sharp with your words or using loaded language, as these can have far-reaching effects on a child’s mental and emotional growth. A comment like “don’t be such a crybaby” or “why can’t you be more like your brother?” can cause as much hurt like a physical blow.

Always pick your words carefully and show compassion. Your kids should know you love them unconditionally, flaws and all. Make it clear to your little ones that when they do wrong, it’s their behavior you hate and not them.

Tip #2: Catch the Good, Not Just the Bad

Some parents are quick to catch their kids’ mistakes and criticize or reprimand them for them. But don’t just be that kind of parent, be the one who compliments their kids in equal measure. Think about it; even you would get tired of receiving negative guidance regardless of its good intentions.

While you want to continue to be on the lookout for questionable behavior in your children, make sure to offset this by catching the right behavior as well. A comment like “you brought your dishes to the sink without being told — very good!” or “I’m proud of you for helping your brother with his homework.” can go a long way to encouraging good behavior in your kids. These statements will do more for your child’s growth than repeated scoldings ever could.

Tip #3: The Rules are the Rules

Discipline is required to run any household effectively. You want to discipline your kids to learn self-control and choose acceptable behaviors. They may test the limits you’ve set time and again, but those limits are necessary for molding them into upstanding members of society.

When you establish house rules, you help your children understand the kind of behavior you expect from them and, thus, help them develop self-control.

Tip #4: Make Time for Your Children

Busy schedules often keep parents and kids from getting together for a family meal, much less spending quality time with each other. However, your kids are probably dying to spend time with you.

Try to get up earlier so you don’t have to rush through breakfast and can spend it catching up with your kids. Often, failing to give your children the attention they need may lead to them acting out or misbehaving, hoping that they finally catch your notice.

Spending time together with your children can be most rewarding. Schedule at least one day a week to spend with your little ones and let them decide what they want to do.

Adolescents might not need as much undivided attention as younger children, but make it a point to schedule time for them as well. It may be harder since the windows of opportunity for spending time with kids this age are fewer, but do your best to be available for your teenagers when they need you.

It may not be that often, but there are times when teens express their desire to participate in family activities. A good way you can connect with your older children is to attend games, concerts, and other events together.

If your being a working parent keeps you from spending as much time with your kids as you want to, don’t let it make you feel guilty. The delicious dinners, movie nights, and bedtime stories are things kids will remember, too.

Tip #5: Be a Role Model

And not just any role model; be the kind of person you want your kids to become. Young children take cues on how to act from their parents. So, before you yell or argue with your spouse, think about how your youngster may perceive your actions. You could be sending the message that it’s okay to lash out when things get tough.

Your kids observe your every move. Children who hit or get physical with other kids tend to have a role model for aggression in their household.

Be a model for the values and attitude you want your kids to adhere to, such as honesty, kindness, respect, and patience. Don’t be selfish. Do favors without expecting anything in return. Offer kind words and be grateful. These are traits your kids should be able to see in you so they may emulate them.

Parenting may be one of the toughest jobs in the world, but it is also one of the most rewarding! So when you strive to improve and become the best parent you can be, joy unlike any other will permeate your being, and there will be no parenting challenge you won’t be willing to take on.