“Affirming words from moms and dads are like light switches. Speak a word of affirmation at the right moment in a child’s life and it’s like lighting up a whole roomful of possibilities.” — Gary Smalley, family therapist
The process of child tending involves upgrading and supporting the physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development of a kid right from the day he/she is born till they attain adulthood. It is your sole responsibility to provide protection and care to ensure an overall growth of the child. Parents’ role in shaping a child’s environment, exposing the child to several factors leads to their significance in the life of the child.
Parenting begins right from infancy and it requires the greatest level of intensity during infancy. During these few years, a child depends a lot upon the caregiver. Theorist and researchers believe that the kind of experience received by the child during this period lays the foundation for the rest of the child‘s development. The amount of warmth, engagement and sensitivity that you invest during the early years of the child’s life pays you back as a secured, self confident child.
Your parenting skills face with various challenges as your child moves farther out in the world. Issues related to school adjustment, peer relationships and academics keep piling up. If parents are involved and supportive, the child successfully gets through these. Therefore, it is evident that the role of parents in providing positive affection and high levels of warmth is necessary for multiple aspects of a child’s learning. Let’s explore some of the parenting skills that have an impact on a child’s development.
One important aspect of responsive parenting is that it help us to understand the role that the environment plays in children’s development. It even has the potential to promote an all round development in high risk children with certain disorders. On the other hand, unresponsive parenting can jeopardize a child’s growth and hamper overall development. To enhance a child-parent relationship, ensure that you know about the types of behaviors that are most important for supporting particular areas of a child’s learning. There is always scope to further your understanding of how to facilitate effective parenting practices. We all know that it is easy to identify the physical needs of the child: nutritious food, shelter, and access to effective health services. When it comes to the child’s emotional needs, it is through interaction, expression of warmth and accepting behaviors that we are able to respond to children’s emotional signals.
Through responsive parenting, we become more conscious and aware of our children and discover what makes them excited, engaged, angry or calm. It leaves a long and short term impact on the health and development of the child. If we are unable to associate and there is lack of interaction with our children, with time it may lead to stress, learning problems and eventually problems with health and behavior.
Therefore, the relationship that we build with our children provides the basis for their social and emotional development. It set the stage for our children’s emotional well-being and social relationships in later stages of life.
Try to be flexible
Often it has been observed that parents struggle to be fine with unrealistic expectations and in the process, mess with the life of the children. The children face extreme pressure to perform in a flawless manner, thereby increasing the stress for the child and becoming gripped with the fear of failure. These kinds of pressure and expectation develop fear of failure within the child if they do not meet with your expectation. In such a situation be open to new opportunities, view the situation through various perspectives and then proceed in a way that is considerate to the needs of everyone involved.
Flexibility develops parent child relationship where the child learns that the parent considers and values his/ her choices and opinions. Being flexible doesn’t mean that you give in to their desires and whims. It is about working together with mutual understanding to proceed further. Research has proved that more adaptive the parenting practices are the lesser is the problem with the child’s behavior. Incorporate psychological flexibility in your parenting role by managing your own internal challenges and keeping parenting consistent with parenting value. We cannot deny the fact that when we are not experiencing any personal challenge, we find ourselves behaving much more empathically with our children. Try to be flexible as well as firm when dealing with your child. Ensure the interaction between parents and children is respectful, and generous. Problems are solved together. Children are loved unconditionally. A feeling of being valued and developing a connection between parent and children is of utmost importance.
Focus on the child’s positive attitude
The focus of a parent should always be towards the child’s positive behavior than on their negative behavior. Upon reprimanding or scolding a child, the bad behavior gets repeated and they turn stubborn. When children are often scolded, they begin internalizing the belief that they are incapable and unfit. You, as a parent, have the task to motivate them to correct their wrong attitude and acknowledge their good behavior when you observe it. Help the children to acquire greater happiness by helping them learn to give and share with others. By nature, we are self centered and we need to learn how to overcome it to be happier.
Give your children responsibility
Studies show that children who are entrusted with household chores become more responsible and learn important lessons in life related to duty, cooperation, community and hard work. At an early age, they can learn to become well-adjusted adults. Parents love to see their children follow directions and not question their authority. This is understandable and is an important goal when raising children to make them obedient. Decide and take the appropriate steps to let go and give the child space to do it in his way. You will have to play a dual role of being lenient as well as strict as it helps your child to become responsible. It is indeed a joyful experience to see children becoming responsible.
However, as our guidance and teaching plays an important role, these parenting skills help us to be equipped in raising our children and preparing them well to face the reality of the world.