Being a parent is not easy! It comes with many challenges, and being a parent to two teenagers makes me question everything I thought I knew about raising children.
They are all individuals, struggling to figure out the world and their place in it. So our job as a parent is to be there when they want us, and always show love.
Every child is so different; my sons were a ball of energy at a young age, while my daughter could spend all afternoon reading or colouring quietly. My boys didn’t enjoy primary school as much and would switch off the minute they exited the gate, where my daughter enjoys it so much she even comes home and plays teachers.
Here are my five most essential parenting tips:
1. Teach them resilience
Resilience is being able to bounce back from stress, challenge, tragedy or adversity. When children are resilient, they are braver, more curious, more adaptable, and more able to extend their reach into the world.
The focus on social and emotional skills is really important for children’s resilience. These are the skills that help children to understand themselves, to manage a wide range of emotions, and seek help when necessary. Teaching children to accept that all feelings are okay is an important aspect of this, and enables them to express things such as frustration or worry.
2. Teach the skill of dealing with the outcomes
Often there are problems that cannot be fixed. You can help by teaching the skill of dealing with the outcomes. Guild your child throughout the problem-solving process and working together on problem solving teachers your child that teamwork or extra support may at times may be required.
3. Teach emotion techniques
Teaching you child that emotions can often signal important values to be learned. If your child comes home angry because they were left out by their friends during recess you can try - "I'm sorry that you feel angry how about we try to figure out how to talk to them next time."
4. You have to let go
Teenage years are probably the most difficult, as you have less and less control. They need to make their own decisions and take responsibility to grow up and venture out on their own.
As your children grow, they become increasingly independent, beginning with a newborn who starts to sleep in their own room, all the way to the teen going off to High school, and of course even beyond that.
5. Be a good role model
Be the role model your children deserve. Kids learn by watching their parents. Modelling appropriate, respectful, good behaviour works much better than telling them what to do. Always tell the truth, this is how you want your child to behave.
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