April 27, 2013
Most parents are overly anxious to get the latest about parenting, trying to make sure that they are doing exactly the right thing. There is nothing wrong with that as all parents are generally well-meaning and only want what is best for their children. However, there is something that you have to understand. There is indeed a science to good parenting, in fact it is one of the most researched topic in the field of social science. For decades, experts have conducted thorough studies but the findings have remained remarkably consistent. What they found out are quite simple and generic to some extent.
Below are some tips and guidelines to help parents raise children of good character:
Make parenting your top priority. This is easier said than done for we are living in a fast paced world. This is hard to do as there are so many competing demands such as work, peers, and even relationship issues. But as a good parent you must learn to plan, organize and devote time to parenting. As parents, you must keep in mind that developing your children’s character is your top priority.
Establish and set rules. Consistency is the key. The rules that you set must not vary from day to day nor should they be enforced intermittently. Such practice will only confuse your child and any misbehavior is your fault and not his. If both parents are raising the child then they have to use the same set of rules. Also, make sure that babysitters, older siblings and relatives are aware and follow the rules that you set. Keep in mind that the rules that your child learned from you will help him establish the rules that he will set for himself later in life.
Cherish your children. Consider them as your most prized possession. There are thousands of couples out there who would be more than willing to trade places with you in a hearbeat! There are couples who are willing to do anything and everything to have a child. The mere fact that you have one is a blessing in itself. Everyday strive to make it a point to tell your children how much you love them and how special they are. Give lots of hugs and kisses.
Be a good example. As parents you must be good role models to your children. Human beings learn primarily through modeling. What your child sees in you, whether good or bad would definitely have an impact on his behavior and character. Being a good role model is probably your most important duty as a parent.
Treat your child with respect. Good parenting is based on mutual respect. Do unto your child what you want your child to do unto you. The best way to get respectful treatment from your child is to treat him with utmost respect. Treat him kindly, speak to him politely and lsiten to what he has to say. Your relationship with your child would be the foundation of his relationship with others.
Spend quality time with your children. Most parents have busy schedules because of the rigors of their jobs. This however should not be an excuse to find time for your children. Do simple things together such as reading, playing, cleaning the house and more importantly praying! Another thing to consider is to make a big deal out of the family meal. Take advantage of this time to talk to your children and listen to what they have to say.
Avoid harsh discipline. Punishment has a bad reputation, and the worst form is physical punishment. The result would be guilt-ridden parents and badly misbehaving children. Studies show that children who are spanked, hit or slapped are more prone to pick fights with other children. They are more likely to become bullies and settle disputes with others through aggression. Always keep in mind that the more your authority is based on wisdom rather than on power, the less likely your children will challenge them. Children must have a concrete understanding of what punishment is for and that its source is parental love.
As parents we want to give our children some level of autonomy and let them be the architects of their own personality while accepting the responsibility of providing an environment that fosters honesty, generosity and compassion to others. Parenting is indeed difficult and stressful but it is also quite fulfilling and rewarding as you watch your children grow as well rounded individuals.
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