All parents raise their kids in different ways. Some prefer a more authoritarian approach when disciplining their children, which is heavily reliant on giving rewards and punishments. And some do the complete opposite of being authoritative — those who practice the progressive parenting style.
It’s the 21st century; parents should explore other ways to teach their children what they need to learn without compromising the validity of their emotions and experiences. For kids to grow up and harness their full potential, they have to be raised in an environment where they are free to find themselves at their own pace.
History has shown time and again that the more children are being controlled by their parents, the more they will want to break free from their clutches. This can lead to the “rebellious teen stage” that is all too familiar because almost every coming-of-age film uses this trope. However, not all kids rebel against their parents.
In fact, if children are raised in a safe space where they are given guidance and feedback instead of punishment, they might become more autonomous individuals. They can grow up understood and appreciated rather than torn down at every opportunity. They can become happier adults.
If you want to learn how you can teach valuable life lessons to your children without controlling, you can look into the progressive parenting style. This may be different from how you were raised by your parents, but it could be better. Here are three ways you can apply this parenting style through real-life situations:
Most parents worry about their children because they’re not always around to make sure they make the right decisions. But if you can teach your kids how they can gauge their options and arrive at the right decision, it can be more beneficial to them, as opposed to you making their decisions for them.
You also have to instill in their minds that they aren’t simply victims of their circumstances; rather, they are the ones steering the wheel of their destiny. Accepting the choices they make and the consequences that follow after are what having a proactive mindset is all about.
If they still can’t understand what you’re subtly hinting at, you can use this as an example: it’s common for people to experience hair loss with old age, and some have it worse than others. Those with severe cases can look into their options for hair transplants for women instead of feeling like the world is ending because of what that they’re experiencing.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with feeling sad that they aren’t as vibrant and youthful as before. But there’s always an answer to every problem, and at some point, they will have to move forward because that’s the only way they can continue living their lives.
Part of the duties and responsibilities of every adult is to take accountability for their actions. While there are people who are quick to project their anger or point blame towards others, there are those who know how to own up to their mistakes and admit to their faults.
This is one of the best things to teach your children because they should know how to be accountable for their choices and actions. But that isn’t just a theory; you have to put it into practice. If they see you owning up to your mistakes and admitting when you are wrong, they will follow suit.
So don’t be afraid to apologize to your children when you know that you’re at fault. This can be as simple as saying sorry when you unknowingly project your anger on them or when you fail to give them the attention they deserve. When you learn how to admit when you’re wrong, you can connect better with your children.
Many people believe that to be the best person you could be, you have to be put under extreme pressure because that’s the only way you can shine. But that can only work on diamonds; if that same thinking is applied to people, they will eventually break because of too much pressure.
When your children make mistakes or fall short of your expectations, the automatic response would be to punish them because that’s how your generation was raised. Your parents grounded you and took away your privileges, so you’re going to do the same to your children. But that’s not right at all.
Just because you experienced hardship growing up doesn’t mean your children have to. That would be taking one step forward and two steps back — you have to break the cycle. And you can start by explaining to your children what the repercussions of their decisions are instead of punishing them outright.
Your kids won’t learn what’s right from wrong when you punish them; they will only learn not to repeat the same mistake because they’re afraid. While many parents revel in the fact that their children are afraid of them, ask yourself if that’s really your goal. Your kids need love and guidance, not a dictatorship.
Being a parent is hard because no manual tells you what you need to do. The most obvious approach would be to follow in the footsteps of your parents because that’s what you already know. But if their approach was wrong, you should take it upon yourself to teach and raise your children better.