What is the goal of parenting? What is the child’s nature and how develop it? What to nurture in a child and how?
Parenting goal is to help a child to become a mature well-rounded holistic and grateful individual who has spiritual values, persistence, determination, desire to learn and improve, proactivity, self-control, makes right decisions, expresses feelings, controls imagination and curiosity, self-confidence, responsibility, and many more.
10 SIMPLE ACTIONS A DAY (Yes, just 10!)
- PRAISE MY CHILD: How often do I praise my child’s efforts/progress/ attitude/ etc?
- FULL ATTENTION AND “PURE” TIME: How do I show interest in my child’s world? Do we share one on one quality time?
- TRUST AND CONFIDENCE IN MY CHILD: How do I trust and show confidence in my child? How often do I offer healthy choices to help them to make their own decision? Do I increase responsibility?
- RESPECT: How do I show respect for my child’s efforts? Do I give time to start and finish, or rush?
- SYMPATHY: Do I give enough time for my child to think, say, decide, and do?
- MY REACTION AND SELF-CONTROL: Do I control my reaction? Am I calm, confident, and positive?
- PRIZES AND REWARDS: Do I initiate and encourage my child with small prizes and rewards?
- MULTIPLE REPETITION AND GUIDANCE: How do I help and direct my child? Repeat multiple times calmly? Listen and ask questions?
- SMILE: Do I smile when I see my child’s eyes? How often do I find the opportunity to laugh together?
- WALK THE WALK AND TALK THE TALK: Am I an example to follow?
As a parent, it is important to understand which qualities our child was NOT BORN with in order to TEACH; and which ones – BORN with in order to DEVELOP
WHAT AND HOW TO NATURE (TEACH)
- SPIRITUAL VALUES, BEHAVIOR, ETHICS AND MORAL, RESPONSIBILITY: What is that we pay the most of our attention to and have a reaction for; how we spend our “pure time” with children; personal example; objective praise; instill ability to act and be independent and interdependent; to make choices.
- LANGUAGE AND SPEECH – teach your child to think before speaking (StopLight game) and when speaking – to select words wisely
- LOVE FOR LEARNING AND PERSEVERANCE – most parents think the love for learning and perseverance are the qualities a child was born with. But it’s a myth! Even though one child might be more inclined than the other to work harder and enjoy learning, usually it’s something children are not born with and parents (as great teachers) can impart with the right behavior. To achieve it, focus on the joy of learning and the process of acquiring new knowledge or sharpening the ones they already have. Joy comes once the child achieves a certain level of mastery. Before that, explain to your child to hold on and just keep doing it over and over again – hardest part (eg. usually, learning how to read the first time is not fun! The reason is that a child has to decode the words and only after mastering reading, she/he can enjoy reading a story by being fully immersed in it). Make sure you ask your child’s opinion and give him/her space to make their own mistakes, decisions, and choices.
- RESPECT FOR PARENTS, ONESELF, AND OTHERS – personal example plays the most important role here. The way we talk about and to someone whether they are present or not; how we treat ourselves and the people around us. Most likely your child will treat us and their own children the way we do it. So, let’s do it with love.
WHAT AND HOW TO DEVELOP WHAT A CHILD ALREADY HAS?
- CURIOSITY AND IMAGINATION: children are born curious and with imagination, so develop curiosity with clear boundaries and bring imagination to practicality.
- SUCCESS: who doesn’t want to be successful?! Born with it. Make sure to teach your child a broad definition of life’s success – understanding and fulfilling their own life’s mission and those around, rather than a limited focus on finance, career, recognition or power.
- DESIRE TO BE INDEPENDENT: guide your children in solving their problems and let them make their own choices, rather than give your answers, opinions and make decisions for them. Develop and don’t crush it.
- DESIRES AND WISHES: shape the ability to overcome momentary desires and impulses. As a result – self-control and self-discipline will pay off in children’s future success. Think of the Stanford “Marshmallow” experiment. One of the ways to achieve it – is to play a “StopLight” game.
JUST DO IT!
Download, print, post a photo of your child and look daily to create a habit of using these tools to achieve your parenting goals.
These words of wisdom adopted from an Israeli teacher, rabbi, lecturer and specialist on parenting and family relations – Asher Kushnir. Asher Kushnir describes 10 daily actions and questions for parents to ask themselves to make their parenting more successful!
You can find A. Kushnir’s course on 6 Fundamental Principles in Parenting in Russian here.