Table of Content
Good Parenting - Overview
There are definitely certain ideals that we associate with parenting- and we definitely want to be the best at it. How does one become one though, what things should a new parent be concerned about? How to fully be able to dedicate hours to the new child, but also be able to balance work and life priorities? How to ensure that your child has a good relationship with parents? One thing that can definitely be accounted for, is that this is a skill that one requires over time, with a whole lot of understanding and patience as well. Keep reading to learn some of the best parenting tips around!
What is effective parenting?
To each person effective parenting looks different. Some prefer reading and watching tutorials, and some solely rely on their parental sense. It also really depends on how one is able to really understand the child and give what they need. At the end of the day, it depends on the kind of child that is born, and what they require while growing up. While it is necessary to do this, there are definitely some skills one should have, or work to cultivate when becoming a parent.
Effective parenting skills
Parents should be open and outwardly loving towards their children in terms of care and affection. Unconditional love is obviously something that all parents should strive for, and they should vow to accept their kid no matter how they are. At the end of the day, effectiveness is subjective- what works for one set of parents may not necessarily work for another- and the nature of the children should also be kept in mind. If one family has been successful at sending their kids to a creche and able to raise them, another may choose to alternately stay at home, and another may choose to keep a house help at home. Things need to be done keeping in mind the interest of the children, and this often requires sacrifices from the side of the parents, usually steeping in nature. This is something that they need to understand and accept when moving forward with the idea of planned parenting.
Ways to be a good parent
Being a parent doesn’t just come into being a good parent- it is a skill that one can teach oneself over a period of time. Everyone has skills that they aren’t really good at, and ones they are good at- these have to be balanced out. What this means is that you can grow into these skills over time, and obviously this will benefit your children too. In this context, there’s a lot of variation that we need to consider since after all every child, parent and family dynamic is different. Everyone has their own set of values and parenting styles, which is why there can’t be a set number of things that one needs to have/do to become a good parent. But, the qualities of a good parent can be learnt and worked upon over time.
How to be a good parent in difficult times
One thing is definitely/should definitely be universal, which is not to raise the kids on how the parents want for them to be, but instead for them to be nurtured and raised to grow into whoever they want to be. The pandemic has definitely not been easy on anyone, especially on new parents- who in normal circumstances would have faced difficulties, and to add the additional burden of the Covid crisis is tough. Prioritising the needs of the child, as well as being extremely smart economically is something that should be kept in mind, especially since most families have been affected by it in some shape or form. Protection of the child and their online safety is also something that should be reinforced by the parents.
Important Qualities for Parents to Have
There is nothing that is in order, but it is definitely essential to have these qualities in some way shape or form. One must be patient, and empathetic at the same time; one must be flexible but also consistent as well. They must possess a great deal of understanding for the child, and especially desire to hear them out when they want to be heard. Parenting is at the very ground root level about bringing up children in a good and healthy way for them, and they shall always be a priority.
Parenting tips by age
There are definitive challenges that come with parenting throughout the ages of the child, things which develop and change during the development of the child. It is natural to see that the needs of the baby will change and they grow up, and so will their expectations. Slowly as they start to interact with the world outside, they also start becoming more mature. The maturity level needs to be matched with the level of freedom and autonomy they receive.
Parenting tips for infants
Being the youngest age group, their needs and requirements are definitely more basic and primal. They aren’t able to distinguish between themselves and the environment yet, and hence they need to be kept warm and safe at all times. They need to be well-rested and given the right kind of nourishment. A bond needs to be formed with their primary caregiver as well, and with time they are able to learn to eat and sleep properly, as well as interact with the limited environment around them. They need a routinized lifestyle, in terms of sleep, food, and love. Learn what comforts the baby, and make sure they get what they need. In these gaps when the baby is sleeping, the caregivers need to get rest and sleep as well. And in time, they shall become a toddler and they will be able to interact and explore as well!
Parenting tips for toddlers
When the child is around two, they should be able to start to walk and talk, and they become aware of the environment around them. They become more autonomous, and they need to be allowed to explore their surroundings, safely. They are at the age where they don’t understand things at all, so they are expected to be stubborn, but they need to be coaxed into things gently. Their emotions and such need to be acknowledged, and sometimes their perspective needs to be seen from (as they really don’t know any better!). They are naturally curious in this phase, so be sure to encourage their curiosity in a safe and secure way.
Parenting tips for preschoolers
During the ages of three and five they start to become more aware of the environment, things and people around them. They will start to manage their behaviours and emotions according to what they think is needed. This is the time when they are starting to go to preschool, and when most of their social skills start to develop. Experiments in learning are common, and they want to know the most they can have access to.
As a caregiver, try and demonstrate things to them, talk to them about feelings and emotions, make a routine for them and give them as much comfort as you can. Ensure they get enough sleep and nutrition as well- keep track of what they eat, but make sure they have a sense of autonomy over the quantity of food. They should be made to understand that junk food and other unhealthy things are to be only a treat basis thing. Try and connect to them, even though the things they may say seem to be trivial. It is of utmost importance that they be taught to self-regulate and self-discipline, and avoid enforced based punishment. And of course, actually make time for them and make sure they are heard.
Parenting tips for schoolers
In most cases children start to ‘grow up’ in this phase, meaning they become more attuned to others around them, and also become more caring and cooperative. In this phase it is essential they develop emotional intelligence skills as well as abilities to self-regulate. Make sure you are able to balance spending time with them as well as their interaction with their peers.
Plan for family time with thiem, and gauge how they react. Keep paying attention to their needs and wants, and encourage them to share their problems with you, and also give them your side of things. Encouraging them to start thinking logically and solving problems at this time is a good idea as well. You should also see what their strengths and weaknesses are and do accordingly to amplify and critique them. Get to know them for who they are, not who you’d want them to be.
Parenting tips for teenagers
This is usually the toughest time in a parent-child’s relationship, after the age thirteen. Their behaviour starts to change, and they start demanding and settling into independence. They are developing into their personalities, but may still be trying to find their own identity. Parents need to acknowledge the influence of the world around them on their children, and are expected to start letting go of smaller things and letting them become who they will become.
Communicating is still key, this is constant throughout all the phases, and it is important to be able to maintain the same connection that you had when the kids were younger. Know what your teenager is upto and trust them, but also make sure they know their limits. Try to eat meals together and spend some time together. Encourage self-care routines, support their goals and dreams in life (and also subsequently guide them and help form them in the first place). Try and become a guide, more than a parent is more important in this phase, as they should want to talk to you in this phase. And of course, make events and plans happen with everyone in the family involved in them.
In conclusion, there is no right way to parent. There are certain things that are universally important, despite differing from cultures, and that is definitely prioritising the needs of the child. All children need love and care, and this is something that parents should be giving unconditionally. No matter how they are, parents are bringing the child into the world, and they are fully responsible for them. If you are a parent, you are responsible for the life that you’ve brought into this world, and this should be the only thing that you should keep in mind- this is upto you to make their love happy and fulfilled.