Whether you’re a new parent or an experienced parent, parenthood is not a breeze walk in the park.
Being a good parent is to be on the roller coaster all the time.
Being a mom to 3 young children, I am always thinking to myself: How does one know if one is a good parent, is there any formula?
I decided to do a little research, and from the numeral blogs and scientific articles, the better term is positive parenting.
There is no universal definition of what positive parenting is; generally, it focuses on the development of a child’s instincts—the focus to tell what is right from wrong through a parent’s firm and kind parenting style.
Some of the characteristics of positive parenting include:
– positive engagement
So you think you can do it. It seems easy enough, and you’re a tough mom! Nothing is too difficult for moms, right?
Until your toddler starts screaming and spitting out her cereal.
You are chanting to yourself that you’re a firm mom, you’re affectionate, but while you count to 10, you erupted and yelled at your screaming toddler.
Immediately you regretted yelling. You should have walked away and breathed, but you didn’t. You started to chide yourself for all the things you should have done but didn’t.
Stop doing that immediately. Instead, I have these five lifesaver tips for you!
Tip #1 – Understand What Caused the Behavior
Was it the taste of the cereal? Could it be your child did not have enough rest and was feeling cranky?
Young children are unable to express their emotions and feelings, or they are trying to get your attention, and so you will have to become a Detective Mom.
When your child starts to act out, ask yourself questions on what might have caused the tantrum, e.g., “Is she not feeling hungry yet?”, “Is he feeling tired?”. Being proactive may prevent such tantrums from happening in the first place.
Tip #2 Distraction, Humor and Playfulness
If your child is a baby or toddler, distraction does the trick of stopping the negative behavior. When you see your toddler playing with a forbidden object (for example, mom’s antique vase), you can say, “Oops! This is a very fun toy to play with, Lou. Let’s make some music with these pots, shall we?”
When your teenager leaves his dirty laundry lying around, it is easier to get angry and start shouting at him. Instead, you can make a joke out of the mess “I’m pretty sure soon I’ll be seeing a Loch Ness monster appearing out of this pile,” or you can even create a game of “Toss the laundry into the laundry basket.”
Note that you are not helping your child to get the chore done; instead, you are encouraging them to be responsible for their actions, in a fun way.
Read more about making a game of parenting.
Tip #3 Consistency
It is important to have some form of consistency in life. Consistent schedules, routines, and expectations in your home, even if it is the weekends or the holidays.
If making the bed in the morning, followed by brushing teeth, is part of the routine, make sure they follow through every single day, no excuses whatsoever. This way, you won’t have to become a strategic negotiator come Monday morning.
“Lydia, we have all made our beds and brushed our teeth, if you do not do so, you will not be able to have breakfast left, and you will go hungry. That will not be a pleasant feeling.”
Be sure to be consistent with what you tell your children, or they will simply endure through your naggings, knowing that they will still get breakfast regardless of whether they’ve brushed their teeth.
Tip #4 Encourage and Acknowledge Your Child’s Strengths and Interests
Every child is unique and different in expressing themselves, and each interest might vary from days to a lifelong passion. What you can do to encourage their interest is to give them plenty of opportunities to explore and experience a wide range of activities.
You can bring them to places of interest, such as the local library or the museum, to develop their curiosity and interests.
“Wow! Look at this brachiosaurus! What do you think they like to eat? Do you know how tall they are, Bobby?”
Ask your child questions to stimulate their curious little minds. When they do have answers to your questions, shower them with praises, but if they don’t, that’s all right too. Do not be quick to criticize them when they are not doing it right, or when they got the information wrong. You can instead ask them, “Shall we find out more about this tall brachiosaurus together?”
Tip #5 Positive Discipline, Not Punishment
Discipline teaches the child self-control, builds confidence and responsibility. Punishment is physical that causes pain, such as spanking.
When siblings start arguing with one another over a toy, and you said, “Stop it right now, both of you! No more going out to the playground today!” That’s punishment, which will cause more frustration and anger between the siblings.
With positive discipline, you can take away the toy and say, “Neither of you will get the toy right now. I want both of you to take a deep breath, Kelly and Josh, remember what we practiced? Now I want both of you to tell each other why you are upset, Kelly, you can go first.”
When you teach your children to communicate their emotions, they are learning self-control and responsibility towards their actions. They will start to understand the connection between what they do and what will happen next – logical consequences.
To be a positive parent
We need to be warm yet firm, motivating, affectionate, supportive of discipline but not harsh, and that’s already a mouthful.
Some kids are easy to handle, while others are not so easy. Every child has different personalities, and that makes them special. Children tend to take after our actions, so the more positive you as a parent are, the more positive kids you will be blessed.
Rest assured that by providing support, understanding, encouragement, and firm parenting style, you are already a good parent and role model to your child as any superhero!
I hope that these tips will help you greatly in improving your relationship with your child, and if you find this information helpful, leave your comments in the comment section! Please share out these wonderful tips with all your friends who want to create more positivity in the family.
Juliana Lee is the brains behind jlrealtysg.com, with a mission to help moms out there gain back their beauty and confidence, and for children to grow up in a positive environment. A work from home mom to 3 young boys, she hopes for world peace and everyone to love animals as much as she does