Parenting Tips That Work
Every parent has their methods of raising their children, some work, some are passive, and some are outright non-replicable.
I know for a fact no parent likes being told how to bring up their children, it’s natural to become defensive once you are corrected on your parenting tactics.
That isn’t to say we can’t learn better ways of getting things done.
I’m a learner, the only time I don’t take corrections is when it’s detrimental to my family or totally against our belief system.
There are different types of parents.
You should establish the kind of parenting style to effect in your home.
One of the goals of parenting is to teach children to develop self-discipline. Many parents feel spanking is necessary for effective discipline.
I know this is a given in our country, what’s a child’s upbringing without spanking and caning, right? I read somewhere on parents learning and applying the three F’s of Effective Parenting to ensure yelling, screaming and spanking disappear and a positive relationship is established.
See if this works for you:
The “3 F’s” of Effective Parenting
Discipline should be:
Consequences should be clearly stated and then adhered to when the inappropriate behaviour occurs.
The punishment should fit the offense. Also in the case of recurring behaviour, consequences should be stated in advance so the child knows what to expect. Harsh punishment is not necessary. Using a simple Time Out can be effective when it is used consistently every time the behaviour occurs. Also, use of reward for a period of time like part of a day or a whole day when no Time Outs or maybe only one Time Out is received.
Use a friendly but firm communication style when letting children know they have behaved inappropriately and let them know they will receive the “agreed upon” consequence. Encourage them to try to remember what they should do instead to avoid future consequences. Work at “catching them being good” and praise them for appropriate behaviour.
A parent should be responsible for the person their children end up becoming, that means taking a stand in their lives. For you to parent a child, you have to have the authority that comes with it.
That means being a strong pillar in your home. Pick the kind of parent you want to be and follow it through. We can’t deny the great influence we wield on a child so start early to mound you home to fit your family ethics.
Also, Parents have to agree and be in harmony on the stand they want to take in parenting the young ones. This makes for a stable family environment at all times. With parenting, comes a great work, you need to do all that is in your power to parent your child the right way.
Let’s see some parenting tips that work in the home to sharpen your parenting skills.
- Never disagree in front of them – whatever method one parent is employing, don’t disagree in front of the child as this undermines that parent’s authority. Children can feel when there is a disagreement and fend on that to disobey and be stubborn about the correction you are giving. You can question that method later out of hearing. This eases tension as well between both parentsBe firm – No child takes a fickle minded parent seriously. If you decide on a punishment or a decision, follow it through.
- Be firm in your parenting always so the child knows mommy has said do a particular thing, you have to do it!Spend enough time with them – busy schedules, jobs etc. can take you away from your child, but you have to spend enough time with them to affect your authority. If you don’t know what’s happening with your child and you are hardly around, a child looks to the next authority figure for guidance.
- Reward system in place – everything isn’t always about correcting and disciplining. Have a reward system in place. Let your child know he/she would be complimented or rewarded for good deeds and behavior, it mightn’t be every time but it should be regular. No child wants to feel you don’t appreciate when they are doing the right thing, even a word of encouragement like ‘well-done’ goes a long way.
- Strictness – I can’t tell you the measure of strictness to employ with your child. Some children need a high hand to put them in their place, some others aren’t like that. You have to understand your child’s behaviour and temperament and be strict when the need arises. No child appreciates a push over parent. Letting a child have his way all times isn’t a show of love, it could be a form of laziness on the part of the parent
- Friendliness and an open culture – let your child not know you only as a parent, you are their friend. If you approach every issue with a strong voice and the wicked eye, your child wouldn’t want to tell you stuff. Let them know they can come to you with any topic, this is a way of reaching out to them too. Sometimes I tell my son even though he is very little to stay with me, I ask him about his day, what happened, any new things to share, I am hoping he grows knowing I am there all the time and I care.
- Be a teacher – this should be a natural thing for you as a parent. Your child needs your guidance. They say ‘charity begins at home’ learn to nurture your child, teach them good values, point things out to them, explain and correct, teach them to be good and responsible.
- Lead by example – this is a very good parenting tip that works and getting things done. If your child sees you doing the opposite of what you teach or ask them to do, they begin to question because they find it hard relating to the instruction you are giving. Whenever I cough, my child tells me automatically, ‘mommy close your mouth, or use the handkerchief’. If I blow his nose, he says ‘wash your hand’. You have to lead by example. You know children do whatever we do, they are a reflection of our character, so look in the mirror, are you who you want your child to be?
- Never shy away from showing/sharing love –Most Nigerian parents are very guilty of this, we believe showing love means we are weak. Ever heard the saying ‘love is a powerful tool? Being a parent doesn’t stop you from showing love, it might even be the love you show that endears your child to you and help them grow as they should. Never shy away from affection. I never fail to hug my children, give kisses, pat on the back, and hold hands. I know when they are teens they might not let me (we have all done similar) but I hope they would remember I did those things and I live them still
- Responsibilities in the home – sharing chores and home responsibilities show everyone has a place in the home and we are all needed to make things right. There are responsibilities my husband takes up and I have mine. Let your children see their place and know what responsibilities belong to them. Something as little as putting away the dishes must be done by someone, let them know what they are in charge of as well as what they cannot do that is your own responsibility
- Laid down consequences and punishment – ensure there are laid down rules on consequences for wrong doings and behavior. If children believe you will do nothing when they are wrong, they would always be stubborn and character wanting. Let them know bad behavior won’t be tolerated and when it occurs, punish them as appropriate. It could be taking away particular privileges, making them do extra work around the house, occasional spanking but not with the intention to hurt. My little girl is quick to exclaim once I raise my hand to her even when the hit hasn’t landed, she ‘feels’ my wrath. There are consequences for every action, good or bad.
Great parenting tips that work isn’t exhaustive; we should make it a habit of being there for them, talking to them, having family meetings, leading and mentoring and essentially disciplining them. Be a wonderful parent to your child and watch them blossom!!
What works for you in your home? Please leave a comment and share with us.
Erl is our contributing writer, a wife and a working class mom of two. She enjoys writing and she is a happy parent – who believes in Family.Share!