No child that comes out from the womb has wrong habits installed by default as factory settings. They become how they are nurtured in an environment.
We spend most of the time picking on the inappropriate acts of our kids. Spanking now and then, assuming this would teach. But in reality that’s not the case. It may stop the act for that while but not eliminate completely. Their act would always be wrong if we are applying the wrong formulas just like in math or physics. Parenting requires some accurate formulas to be adapted. The perfection is then achieved with determination.
At the moment keep aside what to expect from kids, just focus on what you can deliver to them.
Formula 1 – Tell your kids very often how much you love them. The first formula is to try expressing yourself by saying I love you, a hug, kiss, pat on their shoulder, smile, sitting and talking, listening and letting them know how proudthey make you feel. Try to compliment more on their good acts rather than criticizethe bad ones. Kids want attention, if we catch them more often when they are doing something good, they would try doing more good to be caught more often. These small acts do not require much from us, but your love will help boost your child’s self esteem.
Formula 2 – Actions speak louder than words. Sometimes we expect our kids to wind up their toys as soon as they finish playing. We are right no doubt, but actually kids imitate our acts more than words. Imitation is an automatic smooth process that requires no rewards, punishments or explanations. Imitation helps if we are on the right track, but If our newspaper is left lying on the sofa unfolded or our teacup on the table since we last watched TV or the towel on the bed since morning, they would subconsciously get accustomed to an unwinded environment. How do they learn, talk, sing and walk? Simply by imitating. We need to change, erase and replace ourself with the correct formula. Be a model for them and see how things follow.
Formula 3 – Think before you commit.
This is what we normally see
Mother : “Finish your homework first and then we go to the store”
Child : “okay mom”
Child is through with homework 30 minutes later.
Child : “Mom now can we go since I have finished my homework”
Mom : “let me finish preparing the dinner will take you later”
Child : “you always say that and then its too late to go”
In order to build trust between you and your child, be trustworthy. Now before giving your child a task whether it’s homework or cleaning the bed, don’t utter whatever comes in to your mind, but first think think think what reward would please your child so much that he would willingly do the task. The promised reward should be manageable and given instantly. Remember kids only undertand in immediate rewards. Rewards need not be an expensive toy, it can be reading their favorite book, giving stars on their hands, allowing them ten minutes extra in bath tub, depending on your child’s age and that’s it. You are not losing much, just a little use of brain before uttering the task and see the difference yourself. Just don’t forget to be “instant” and enjoy the change.
Formula 4 – Respect
“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life.” Richard David Bach (born 1936) said these words being a writer.
Respect your child and yourself to foster a mutually beneficial relationship. Treat your kids the way you want to be treated. If their suggestions, opinions, criticisms, comments would be respected then it’s simply vice versa. The formula for respect is mastered if we try to be honest, positive, fair, polite and reliable to our kids. Dont agree to all their views but give your honest advice as they are kids after all.
These are just a few formulas that we have heard and read in the past a number of times, but repeated reading helps us to remember more and adapt well. None of them require any extraordinary effort. Just give your best and get the best.
I am not a psychologist, neither have any degrees in self improvement studies. I am simply a housewife who looks for solutions by reading self improvement books and like sharing and discussing with everyone.