Positive parenting and positive discipline are centered on instilling positive behaviors via the use of gentle and strong parenting methods. Here are some practical tips for positive parenting that can assist you in creating a calm, joyful household.
What Is Positive Parenting
Positive parenting is a parenting philosophy that is based on the premise that children are born with good intentions and a desire to do what is right. It stresses the value of mutual respect and the use of positive disciplinary guidelines. Parenting methods emphasize teaching future conduct rather than reprimanding previous wrongdoing.
Many contemporary parents adopt these gentle parenting ideas out of a desire to parent differently than they were raised. They are able to parent in ways that represent their family values and views via positive discipline. Positive parents are attuned to their children’s developmental stage, temperament, and requirements.
What You Do Is Significant
Parents serve as significant role models for their children, who learn proper behavior by observing their parents. This is a critical principle. What you do matters. Avoid reacting or acting on the spur of the moment. Consider the following: What am I attempting to achieve, and is this likely to result in that outcome? Whether it’s eating nutritious meals, exercising, being nice to others, or being honest, children are watching and looking to their parents for guidance on how to act.
You Cannot Have Too Much Love.
There is no such thing called “excessive” amount of love. Bear in mind that financial things or a lack of norms and boundaries are not synonymous with love. Simply said, it is impossible to pamper a kid with love. What we often conceive of as the consequence of spoiling a kid is never the result of a youngster receiving an excessive amount of affection. It is often the result of a parent providing a kid with stuff in lieu of love, such as leniency, reduced expectations, or material goods.
Participate in Your Child’s Life
Parenting entails plenty of responsibilities. Being an active parent requires time and effort and often requires reconsidering and changing one’s priorities. Frequently, this entails sacrificing your own desires in order to meet your child’s needs. Mentally as well as physically present.
At the same time, although parents should be there for their children, they should not take on all of their responsibilities, including schoolwork. Homework is a way for instructors to determine whether or not a kid is learning. If you do the assigned task, you are not informing the instructor of the child’s progress.
Adapt Your Parenting to Your Child’s Specific Needs
The age of a kid has a significant impact on how he or she acts. Recognize natural behavioral changes and assist them in their own growth and development. The same need for independence that drives your 3-year-old to constantly say ‘no’ is also what motivates him to be potty trained. The same cerebral development spurt that fosters your 13-year-curiosity old’s and inquisitiveness in the classroom also fosters her argumentativeness at the dinner table.
Establish and Set Regulations
When a kid is younger, it is critical to assist him with self-management since this teaches him how to control himself. If you do not control your child’s conduct when he is young, he will have a difficult time learning to govern himself when you are not there. You should always be able to provide answer to these three questions, regardless of the time of day or night: Where is my child? Who is accompanying my child? How is my kid behaving? The rules you teach your kid will form the rules he applies to himself.
Parents should remain engaged as their children get older while enabling them to develop independence. You are in no position to micromanage your child’s behavior. Once your kid reaches middle school, you must let them do their own schoolwork, make their own decisions, and refrain from interfering.
Children need boundaries.
Establishing boundaries teaches your kid self-control. Encourage your child’s independence to help them develop a feeling of self-direction. He’s going to need both to be successful in life. It is natural for youngsters to want autonomy. Numerous parents incorrectly associate their child’s independence with rebellion or disobedience. Children strive for independence because it is human nature to prefer feeling in control to feel dominated by another. While these behaviors may provide difficulties for parents, they are necessary for child growth.
Establish guidelines and adhere to them consistently. If your rules change significantly from day to day or are only enforced seldom, your child’s disobedience is your responsibility, not his. Consistency is your primary disciplinary weapon. Make a list of your non-negotiables. The more your authority is founded on knowledge rather than on might; the less likely your kid is to question it.
Avoid Discipline That Is Too Strict
Discipline on a physical level is never an option. Children who have been spanked, slapped, or struck are more likely to fight with other children. They are more prone to be bullies and resort to violence in order to resolve conflicts with others. There are many other methods of disciplining a kid – including ‘time out’ – that are more effective and do not entail violence.
Justify Your Decisions and Rules
Establish clear, age-appropriate expectations and ensure that they are communicated to the kid in a language he understands. Good parents set high standards for their children to live up to. In general, parents explain too much to little children and too little to teenagers. What may seem self-evident to you may not be so to a 12-year-old. He lacks your priorities, judgment, and experience.
Respect Your Child
Respect children, and they will develop an appreciation for others, especially their parents. The greatest approach to earn your child’s respect is to treat him with respect. You should provide the same courtesy to your kid as you would to anybody else. Communicate with him nicely. Respect his point of view. Pay close attention to what he says. Be nice to him. When possible, attempt to satisfy him. Children treat others in the same manner that their parents do. You are setting an example for your kid to follow. Your connection with your kid lays the groundwork for her future relationships.
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The Benefits of Positive Parenting
The more you practice effective parenting techniques, Steinberg explains, the more natural they will become, even when you react impulsively. According to Steinberg, effective parenting promotes healthy psychological adjustment and positive behaviors and characteristics like honesty, empathy, self-reliance, compassion, collaboration, academic achievement, intellectual curiosity, drive to learn, and a desire to succeed. According to Steinberg, effective parenting also helps prevent children from engaging in antisocial behaviors, substance misuse, anxiety, depression, and eating disorders.
Fewer Behavioral Issues
Numerous studies have shown that employing positive discipline results in better outcomes for the child’s conduct and emotional development. In early infancy, harsh, punishing parenting tends to result in an increase in behavior issues in children. Parents that are distant, uninvolved, and unresponsive produce children with impaired self-regulation, exacerbating the child’s behavioral problems.
Parent-Child Relationships That Are Close
Positive discipline eliminates the need for parents to punish in order to address undesirable conduct. There is no more arguing, no more power struggles, and no more animosity. Parent-child interactions improve, as does your connection with your kid. Positive parenting also strengthens the parent-child connection via mutual respect and open communication.
Increased Self-Esteem and Mental Health
Positive parenting instills a sense of self-worth in children. They think they are capable of doing tasks on a par with the majority of other individuals, and they have self-confidence. Additionally, these youngsters are more resilient. They are resilient even when faced with adversity. Children who are resilient and self-assured have fewer disputes and stronger relationships with their parents. They have a superior mental health proclivity.
Increased Academic Performance
Children that are positively parented often have greater academic achievement.
A more positive parent-child connection as a consequence of this parenting style is also strongly linked with improved academic achievement.
Increased Social Capability
Children with positive parents have improved social problem-solving abilities and social self-efficacy6, as well as a higher level of well-being. They are more likely to have a good self-image and youth development.
Increased Parental Self-Esteem and Decreased Stress
Children are not the only beneficiaries of excellent parenting. Researchers discovered that parents develop self-esteem and confidence as a result of their parenting. Additionally, these parents have less parenting stress since their children are well-behaved.
Tips On Positive Parenting
1. Concentrate On The Reasons Behind Their Behaviors
There is always a cause for children to misbehave, even if the reason seems trivial to parents. It is rational for the kid, which is why they act in this manner.
If parents can immediately address the reason, even if the kid does not get what they want, they will feel their needs are recognized. Having emotional support from family members is often more essential than having the request fulfilled. A recognized kid may progress without the need to engage in misbehavior. They may remain grumpy, but they do not need to act out in order to be heard.
Inquire of them and get to the heart of the matter. Understanding the underlying causes of troublesome behaviors may also assist parents in avoiding them in the first place. For example, a kid slapped her sibling. The explanation might be because she was upset because her younger brother stole her toy. So educating the younger kid to ask for permission first before stealing someone else’s toys would prevent the problem from developing. You’re also teaching kids excellent manners.
If your kid appears to never listen to you, there are two possible explanations.
One explanation might be your anticipation is not realistic. Reexamine what you ask your kid to do or not to do. Is it an order or a request? Does it have a valid reason?
It’s simpler for a kid to accept a decent explanation, particularly one that is important to their well-being than to mindlessly obey a command.
Another cause for disobedience is a lack of a strong parent-child connection, which provides the basis for a child’s growth, and future success.
2. Be Firm And Kind
Be nice to your kid to demonstrate how to be kind and courteous to others. Children learn by imitating others, and you are their main role model.
When a parent shouts, humiliates or calls kid names, the youngster learns to do the same when they’re angry.
The opposite is also true. When a parent is nice and courteous while being angry, the kid learns to cope with problems with calm and respect. Being nice also helps a kid to calm down, more open to explanation and more inclined to comply. Many parents erroneously associate being positive and friendly to being permissive. This is just not true.
You may firmly and gently inform a kid that she cannot have what she wants. There is no need for shouting, adopting a harsh tone or talking in a severe manner. A harsh voice expresses wrath whereas a strong voice indicates power.
You don’t need to be nasty to mean business. A strong and calm NO is as good as, if not better than, a loud and nasty NO.You may be strong in establishing boundaries and implementing penalties so that your kid understands what to anticipate and what to base their future choices on. Practicing decision making this manner helps youngsters develop their cognitive thinking, an important skill for their future success.
3. Gentle Discipline
The First Three Years, punitive punishment generates Four Rs that do not assist a kid develop – Resentment, Rebellion, Revenge and Retreat.
Often, punishment cannot halt bad behavior, nor can it also teach good ones. A positive, non-punitive reaction is far more successful in calming an overstimulated kid and engaging them to learn a new habit. Time-out has been extensively criticized in recent years. That’s because most parents do not utilize it properly.
Time-out for kids is not intended to be a punishment but sadly, most parents use it that way. They isolate and limit the kid’s mobility and add a supplementary punishment by chastising or lecturing the child.
In the original concept of time-out, the kid is simply removed from the over-stimulating environment that causes or aggravates misbehaving, and then placed into a non-reinforcing location to settle down and feel secure. So some parenting gurus developed “time-in” to replace time out. Time-in is really a similar concept as the appropriate usage of time-out, which has been shown to work through decades of study by psychologists.
Time-out is not the sole method to halt undesirable conduct. Remember, a positive parenting strategy focuses on teaching the right behavior rather than penalizing the undesirable ones.
4. Be Clear and Be Consistent
Decide and explain the penalties of breaking boundaries clearly before being enforced. Additionally, parents must be persistent and follow through on their rules. There will be confusion if a parent is inconsistent.
The kid may keep trying or pressing the boundaries to discover what else may happen.
To follow through implies do not say anything unless you mean it. Do not make hollow threats to cancel the ball game if your child misbehaves unless you are ready to carry it through when that occurs.
5. Age-Appropriate Behavior And Brain Development
Sometimes, what we believe is improper conduct is really age-appropriate behavior.
For instance, tantrums among toddlers are quite typical. These little children have strong emotions but are unable to express them verbally. Additionally, they lack the capacity to control themselves due to the fact that that area of the brain has not yet matured. Our kid needs our assistance in developing self-control. Brain development stages have a role in determining a positive parenting approach. Toddlers and preschoolers (even three-year-olds) may have difficulty comprehending consequences. Therefore, redirection should be utilized instead of arguing or imposing consequences on them.
6. Take a Break To Recharge Your Batteries
Yes, you read it correctly. When necessary, you must take a time-out for yourself. Occasionally, parents are just tired and enraged by their children’s misbehavior.
However, here is the real moment of do-as-I-say-AND-do-as-I-do. If you can maintain your composure and talk in a polite and strong manner, your kid will learn to deal with anger and disappointment gracefully. If things do not go their way, you want your kid to have the capacity to maintain self-control and respect. If you are unable to accomplish it yourself, do not expect your kid to.
When you feel yourself ready to lose it, explain to your kid that you need some alone time due to your distress. Give an approximate time of your return and then retreat to another room to cool down. Walking away not only puts an end to power conflicts, but also gives you time to collect your wits. Remind yourself that the aim of discipline should be to educate, not to win a fight.
Take a few deep, focused breaths while you’re there to clear your thoughts. You now have more time and breathing space to consider possible solutions to the problem at hand. When you return, you will feel revitalized and prepared to take on your parenting problems once again.
Meditation is another excellent technique to enhance your self-regulation. Regular meditation can alleviate stress in these difficult circumstances and fosters thoughtful parenting.
7. Turn It into a Learning Experience
When youngsters are old enough to reason (over the age of three), each incident of misbehavior may be transformed into a priceless lesson in problem resolution.
What lesson does breaking a toy teach? This implies the kid can no longer play with it. That is a natural outcome.
If the child did not like the item, he or she should have given it to a friend or donated it so that it might be enjoyed by other children. If they break a toy out of irritation, assist them in finding other outlets for their displeasure, such as hitting a cushion. Teach them to consider alternate means of resolving a conflict rather than acting out.
Teach children to use appropriate vocabulary to express their emotions (“I am upset because…”) rather than misbehaving. Assist youngsters in honing their communication abilities. Promoting language development will substantially reduce temper outbursts and disobedience.
8. Maintain Patience and Avoid Despair
Positive parenting and positive discipline will not immediately give children the behavioral improvements parents want. Positive parenting is not about obtaining immediate results. It is about instilling behaviors in children that parents want to see them imitate over time.
At first, you may have to do a great deal of explaining each day. It may take longer than conventional punishment to observe significant improvements, since children learn through repetition. However, when that occurs, the experience will be very gratifying, and the advantages will last a lifetime.
Nota bene: Positive parenting is diametrically opposed to conventional harsh parenting. It necessitates a shift in parenting attitude and actions. However, with patience, perseverance, and (ample) experience, you may transform disciplinary times into excellent learning opportunities for children.