How to build strong bonds with your kids while raising them wisely.
The 21st century has changed lifestyles for both the young and the old. While the routines of an adult have become more demanding, so has that of our children.
Every parent, tries his or her very best with their child, ensuring they feel loved, cared for and provided for in the best possible manner. Whether it’s driving them to school, spending your only Sunday constructing them a science project, drafting them that shiny essay or helping them put on a uniform for school; we try! But when do we begin to realize that ‘coddling’ is not the same as ‘helping’ or ‘teaching’?
Remember, it is not ‘what’ you do, but ‘how’ you do it that matters most with children. Between building a highway to our own dreams, and responsibly raising our child with the love and guidance required, here are some tips to bear in mind to ensure our presence is strongly felt; while we do what’s right for our child’s robust future. These do not directly include activities to undertake, but considerations to dwell on, that may help strengthen your bond with your child.
Prepare while you protect-
From toddler to teenager, all children undergo various phases of cognitive, emotional & social development, where they begin to learn more about themselves and the world around them. Allow your child the freedom to be curious. You are of-course, going to want to look out for their best interests always; but encourage the habit of ‘preparing’ your child over ‘protecting’ him/her. The former embodies ‘instinctual tutelage’ while the latter is driven by ‘involuntary anxiety’.
Guide, don’t command-
Constantly telling any child ‘what to do’ tends to nurture their rebellious side, leading to difficulty in helping a child see things your way. You are your child’s ‘best friend’. Nurture your relationship by spending free time guiding and teaching, instead of demanding or being controlling. This will help develop a sense of responsibility and hone your child’s conscience from a tender age. Additionally, if you’re successful, your child will accept you as a confidant and allow you the opportunity to prudently guide him/her through their future.
No matter how old they get, they’re still your kids. BUT THERE COMES A TIME TO LET GO. A classic example is making a habit of dressing a preschooler yourself. Instill personal independence in as many facets of your child’s life, as possible. From personal care, to homework & daily routines, assign young ones with duties or tasks to perform. Reward achievements as you see fit. Encouraging independence from young age helps mold strong personal characteristics.
Habits, both good and bad, are easily cultivated in one’s childhood. While you hand-hold your child through life’s challenges steering most good decisions, your child will grow to be autonomous and independent someday. Motivate the habit of self-reflection. This helps your child rationalize and understand why one decision is better over another, or why most failings are best not repeated.
There is no hard and fast rule to parenting. It is a manner of learning for you, just like it is for your child. Each time your make a decision for them, don’t merely put yourself in their shoes; try and think like them too.