Parents’ in today’s day and age have to multitask and handle a lot of things together – work, family and our ownselves. We are under constant pressure to perform well in every area. But that leaves us with limited time with our kids to accomplish the maximum we want to with them. We want to play with them, teach them and expect them to learn almost immediately.
Raising A Child – A Competitive Game?
It is seen that some parents want to give their children better than what their friends/relatives are giving to their children.
It is hilarious but the choice of brands for milk, toys, clothes and selection of school has suddenly become a matter of prestige instead of an issue of quality.
Before we talk about inculcating values and good habits in our children, we as parents should check our behaviour and attitude. We should try and do things in which we believe, rather than do things which others are doing. We should stop being a part of the rat race. Always remember, what we give to our child is the best we can, and no one can or should judge that.
While we try and give the best of the material world to our child, we should remember a few important values that we need inculcate in our children right from the beginning.
Various studies have shown that the best stage to inculcate some fundamental values in our children is the ‘toddler stage’. This is the time when a child’s brain is like a sponge and it soaks in whatever comes it’s way.
Children at this age are curious, want to question everything, have a tendency of learning things faster, which makes it the best time to build a strong foundation that is based on good values and good habits.
Every family has a different value system but a few values are common everywhere.
Below are a few values and habits which I feel must be a part of bringing up a child:
As most of us stay in nuclear families and the trend of single child is on a rise, children don’t have any one in the family to share things with. Being a single child he gets all he wants and everything is ‘his’ property. Due to this attitude and a sense of entitlement that comes with it, the child never learns to share things. Subsequently, the child has a hard time once s/he starts school and socializing with other kids. S/he might throw tantrums or get cranky or show stubbornness to accept this change. Hence, it’s always better that we teach them about sharing early on.
Value Of Money
You must have observed that children today are more pampered compared to what we were during our childhood. To avoid them from being adults who takes things for granted, we need to make sure that they know the value of money and the things they have. Take efforts to make them realize how privileged they are to have what they have.
Give them things they want but make sure you make them do something to earn those things. Let them understand that things won’t just be handed to them on a silver platter. But ensure that you do this mindfully because there is a thin line between bribing the child to do something for a goodie or a chocolate and rewarding them for doing something good.
You need to make your children understand how important it is to respect everyone. Starting from parents, grandparents, elders, peers and specially people who are less privileged than us.
Many of us hire help to take care of the baby or for taking care of the house.
- You should not let your child feel that he is the master or allow him/her to give instructions to the care takers.
- Make him understand the difference between requesting someone to do something for them and ordering someone to do something.
- Make them understand that the care takers are there to help them whenever they need and not follow their instructions or orders.
Remember, you are a live example for them. They will follow what you do more than what you tell the. So you have to be respectful first. Check how we ask them to do things for us without bringing out the master-servant relationship to surface. If we can inculcate this value in our children then I am sure they will turn out to be very good humans.
We need to make them aware about honesty as a general virtue and encourage them to speak nothing but the truth to everyone. Also make an environment where they are not scared of sharing anything, small or big, with you.
Don’t be a best friend, be a best parent.
- don’t overreact on little things they do wrong.
- give them enough time, listen to them.
- talk to them everyday.
How can your behavior impact their honesty?
Keep a check on your day to day activities. Things like making a fake excuse for not picking up a call can be a small thing for you but it makes a child feel that it is ok to say things as per a situation even if it is not true. It’s ok to lie to get out of trouble.
Hope & Positivity
We need to make our children believe in the power of hope and positivity. They need to know and believe that every dark cloud will have a silver lining.
You need to make them happy and positive individuals right from the beginning so that it’s easy for them to cope up with situations in future.
- We should make our children realize that we will love them no matter what.
- We should teach them to celebrate the smallest victory or the tiniest of joys with great enthusiasm
- We should also make them aware that they can sit with us and have a cup of ice cream even when they lose
Let them know that we are there to celebrate their success and equally there to support them in their failure as no failure is big enough to end the hope of something better which is on their way.
Rules are not meant to be broken
Children will observe you and do exactly what you put before them. You run a signal and they will feel its ok to do it, you say yes to a rule set by someone and do what you wish to, your child will do the same.
We need to make our children understand that rules are there for some purpose.
Yes, of course you should justify the rules you are making, you should be able to explain them the need of the rule, then only you can expect them to follow it. We should ensure that they are satisfied with our requirement of having a rule in place and don’t treat it as a restriction or some forceful act. Rather they should accept it as a way of disciplined life.
When I analyse myself as a parent, I check whether my parenting is giving emphasis on above things. I know there is no one specific best way of parenting but in today’s time when negativity and inhuman mind set is taking a toll on everyone and everything, it becomes all the more important to teach these things to our children consciously.
Do you agree with me? Do you think there are other areas which should also be considered?
Share your views and help each other in raising some good, sensitive, honest, caring and most important, content humans…The world needs them!