We are flooded with what we need to do as parents for our children: give them activities, have a sense of humor, feed them well, make sure they sleep enough and have great friends, etc. All true. But what are the basics that we truly can’t do without?
- They are Not a Mini-Me. Children are not you and will never be you. They are not here to be better versions of you. They are not here to do what you did not do. Children are here to live their own best life.
- Don’t Get Involved in a Power Struggle. Never demand something from your children that you know you can’t follow through without a power struggle. Fighting with children brings us down to their level rather than keeping us elevated as an authority figure.
- Give Them Space. Our entire purpose in raising children is to let them go. And every day you need to find ways to let them go a bit more. You are successful as a parent when your children do not need you at all and each day should be a step forward toward that release.
- Hold Them Close. No one can grow without being grounded. So, as you send your children off and loosen the reigns, they need to know that they have a base to always fall back on. A support that is forever there.
- Go On Dates. Every one needs to feel special. Even if you are at home with your children, to have that separate ritual of being together sends a powerful message and lasting memory that you are there for your child.
- Compliment More Than Criticize. See the good and find your child’s strengths for every ten compliments you can make one couched criticism and be careful when you do it. It’s best to walk on eggshells when offering critique.
- Don’t Show-Off. The world does not need to know how great our children are. Share their accomplishments with your family and a few close friends. Your children will know that
you care. Don’t post their lives on social media.
- Be a Teacher. Our job as parents is to be a guide to our children throughout their lives. Parents are always ahead of their children in life experience. Know that you will always have the role of advisor- behave accordingly.
- Never Stop Learning- Be Informed. What your parents did may not be right or apply today: Take the best from your own childhood- avoid the worst.
- Don’t Talk About Them. That’s called gossip. I know we look at it as venting our own lives and seeking advice but at the end of the day, every time you mention your children, you are gossiping about them. So, choose wisely with whom you share.