consistent parenting advice
consistent parenting advice

Parenting Magic

What does it take to create parenting magic in families?
Here is a list of ingredients......

consistent parenting advice
  • Parenting Magic 1

Learning to cope with disappointments
I believe it is very important to teach a child right from the beginning to learn to cope with disappointments. Learning to cope with disappointment is easier if children are given the opportunities to experience these feelings when they are very young. The world can be a very disappointing place and children need to know and understand that things happen in spite of and regardless of their input.

For instance, you can prepare for a wonderful days outing to the beach, park or play ground, only to have it cancelled because of changing weather. Children need to learn about these types of disappointments and how to handle their emotions when they occur.

As parents you can model responses to your child, helping them to express their feelings around it, to talk about it and to accept and move on from it.

  • Parenting Magic 2
parenting magic Respect
See your child as a person and respect them. Treat them as you would expect to be treated. Be as respectful of their feelings, boundaries, hope and fears as you would expect them to be of yours. Children are people and to know this is to give them due respect.

Encourage your children to treat their siblings with equal respect and to honour each others privacy. Respect is mirrored by the parents' behaviour of each other. You cannot teach what you do not do.

  • Parenting Magic 3
Never be afraid to say no
One of the greatest gifts you can give your child is to say no rather than maybe or perhaps. Children need to learn they cannot have everything they think they want. Overindulged children become self centred adults unprepared for their future.
It may well be the kindest, most loving response to your child in many situations, but often parents have enormous problems with this. Some parents worry that their child will have hurt feelings and feel let down by them if they say no.

However, saying no, when appropriate, teaches children that limits and boundaries are part of normal daily life and affords them opportunities to experience this and therefore to grow emotionally.

  • Parenting Magic 4
parenting magic Help your children to handle their negative emotions
I very much support the belief that it's a child's right to be a child for as long as possible. However I also believe you do a child no favours by letting them think that the world revolves around them. Their natural egocentric state protects and validates them enough without being overly protected from hurts and disappointments.

Intuitively, all loving parents know how much to shield their children from the world's sadness. I am not advocating growing up before their time; rather I support the idea of helping children to handle their negative emotions as they occur.

  • Parenting Magic 5
Coping with being let down by others
Children need to learn to understand that other people can and will let them down in numerous ways. Help them to talk about these disappointments, and to feel the feelings rather than suppressing and not understanding them. Not apportioning blame either to the person or to themselves is an important new understanding that parents can help with.

Learn to listen to your own reactions and to realise that tirades of put downs against other people when heard by your children always models harmful ways of thinking.

  • Parenting Magic 6
Spoiling your child
You can never spoil a child with an overabundance of love and attention, but you can spoil them by not putting guidelines and boundaries in place.

When people remark that you'll spoil that child with attention, just remind yourself that if solid boundaries are in place right from their earliest moments, and if you are firm and consistent with them, you can never spoil your children with too much love.

  • Parenting Magic 7
parenting magic Begin sex education early
Begin when your children are very young to introduce them to age appropriate ideas around sex education with as much ease as you can.

Then you will never have to anticipate "the talk" with them as you will be constantly refreshing, updating and educating them as they grow.

  • Parenting Magic 8
Lighten up!
When the going gets tough, lighten up and try not to take yourself too seriously. Raising children is certainly a serious job, but when viewed as a project with little fun involved, no-one's interests are served and life becomes a chore.

Remember to inject some lightness and fun into each day.

  • Parenting Magic 9
Eat your meals at the table together
Eat your meals together around the table rather than in front of the television. Some of the best and most intimate times of growth for families can take place around the table, where children learn how to participate in conversation, taking their turn at both listening and talking.

This becomes the place where the day's activities are shared, problems made known, and where opinions, values and life issues are learned.

  • Parenting Magic 10
parenting magic I'm sorry, I was wrong
Never be too proud to apologise to your children when you make a mistake or an incorrect decision. It takes courage and integrity to admit you are wrong rather than to blame everything and everyone else except yourself. What a wonderful gift you give when you teach this to your children.

Parenting Resources - Here is a selection of parenting resources and activities for families available on the Internet. Enjoy!

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