Raising happy and healthy kids is one of the most challenging and rewarding things a person can do. Parenting requires a lot of focus and parents need to learn a few principles to be successful. Instead of using gut instinct when parenting, using proven guidelines and principles can ensure the best outcomes for both parents and kids. In this article, we will look at the best parenting principles, all of which can help avert childhood behavioural problems.
Be Mindful of What You Do
Children are always watching and learning from your actions. What you do and say as well as how you act in different circumstances has a massive impact on how your children grow up. Take a moment to think about your reaction in different moments, exploring what you want to achieve and what results you will get with your actions. Do this and your children will learn to do the same.
Nurture Your Child’s Independence
As a parent, you need to find a balance between helping your child develop self-control and encouraging independence. Helping your child develop self-control typically entails setting boundaries and limits which govern everything they do, within reason.
Encouraging your child to have independence helps them develop self-direction. They can pick up what they like, see what could benefit them, and nurture what interests them as they grow up. Both self-control and self-direction are critical as children grow up.
It is very normal for children to start pushing for independence and autonomy as they grow up. They may stop liking what they used to and start liking new things, they may want to be left alone sometimes, they might choose different friends as they grow up, and so on.
Many parents mistakenly think these are signs of being rebellious or disobedient. Children do this because they want to feel in control of some part of their lives. This is human nature because no one wants to feel controlled all the time.
If you taught them what the limits are when you were helping them develop self-control, you should have little to worry about. Just remember you will have to step in from time to time to correct them if they see them going in the wrong direction.
Encourage Them to Nurture Their Interests
The interests we have while we are young shape us as we grow older. We pick up lessons, skills, and knowledge from these interests that we carry with us for the rest of our lives. As kids grow up, they may pick different interests and drop the ones they have. As a parent, it is important to know what your children are interested in so you can better guide them on the paths they would like to walk. This principle applies to all kids, including foster kids.
While some foster kids may seem detached and not want to engage in any activities, it is important to still introduce them to try different things to see which ones they pick up. Foster parents can encourage them by using their fostering allowance to help them engage in activities and attend clubs they are interested in.
An added benefit of encouraging your kids to nurture their interests, which is incredibly important for foster kids, is providing opportunities for social interactions. Many kids learn the social skills they take with them as they grow older from these shared activities, clubs, and interests as they engage with other kids.
Unpredictability in rule enforcement can lead to childhood behaviour issues. Consistency is a crucial disciplinary tool which starts with laying down your non-negotiables. Also, try to ensure your authority and rule enforcement are based on wisdom and not power because this is how you ensure your child will not challenge it.
The best parents have a set of rules for them and their kids that they follow. The principles outlined above will help you create a foundation that helps you be the best parent and have the best outcomes with your children.