Nov 18, 2011 – Top 10 Way To Be A Great Parent – Parenting Skills Training
Without doubt, parenting is much more difficult today than it was in the past. Families were closely knitted and it was a lot easier to learn from the older and more experienced predecessors. Going to see a grand was a matter of a few poles or miles away, compared to now where flights and visas need to be booked quite ahead.
In the early days, people were more comfortable with the thought of encouraging their children to marry from families they know so well and relate with cordially compared to this generation, where children walk up to parents with ‘total strangers’ and declare marriage intensions. Saying ‘no’ to your child’s choice is sometimes interpreted as insensitivity to their feelings and sincerely speaking, no parents want that label, so we let them make their choice and only advice, hoping they take the right path.
Leaving young parents to figure out what would work for their families has been both challenging and fun experience. Challenging because you keep trying till you find what is peculiar to you and fun as you enjoy the freedom of not being saddled under mama’s concept. This has led to hunting knowledge from every available meaningful and sensible source.
Having children has been great fun and it’s like all you need to know, without parents and family around come from books, articles of experienced people, internet materials and a few suggestions from well-wishers.
In the western world, you benefit from good medical advice and assistance during anti-natal and post-natal stages with three to four rounds of health visitors coming home to see how you are settling into your new role as a parent and after then, you are totally on your own.
No one has been lucky enough to inherit documented parenting guide from his/her parents and no matter how successful or wonderful they were, everyone is expected to bring his/her unique standard for their home. Without any intentions to scare you, this makes parenting a life of great care. You can now better appreciate when the issue of maturity is raised as a prerequisite for marriage.
A baby giving birth to a baby would do nothing better than mess up things in so many areas.
To be a great parent you need to…
Start with yourself:
Charity, they say, begins at home. I can’t see the possibility of you giving what you do not have to your child. Dealing with hang-over of past hurts, forgiving people, learning new/better ways to deal with things and people, communication skills and loving/appreciating yourself deeply, will all go a long way to prepare you for the great task of parenting. People who venture into raising children without first dealing with their issues spill venom on the innocent children rather than help them grow well.
Give better value than what you received: This is extremely difficult, but it can be done. We tend to treat our children the way we were treated. Sometimes you actually hear your mama’s voice when reprimanding and you’re like ‘did I just say that?’ There’s room for improvement, know that the things that hurt you would most likely do same to your children, deal with them wisely.
Don’t just love them, show it to them: Words are powerful and telling your children they are loved is a great way to build confidence.
Be a good role model:
Enough of just making rules; live by example. If you like a clean house, then get your hands to work. They would learn faster than mere talking.
Handle your emotions:
Children sometimes become targets of our emotional setbacks. We tend to take it out on them when things fall apart.
Be firm but not unreasonable:
The strength of your words would forever be tested by your children, let them know boundaries but be sensitive to accommodate their feelings. Deal with bad behaviour; criticise wrongdoings and not the child. Correct in love, discipline with care.
Great patience is needed with children.
Don’t try to make your child become what you could not, acknowledge their unique abilities and support them to actualise their dreams, not your failed aspirations. Give advice when necessary, but do it in love.
Whether you like it or not, we are all products of some kind of counsel. If you don’t give your child the right counsel, they are likely to get a wrong one from a bad source. Cultivate friendship with them; this is one way they will be free to ask intimate and sensitive questions.