Modeling good behavior is a significant variable when raising children and perhaps the most difficult to do consciously. We all have patterns of behavior that we would prefer NOT passing down to our kids. I personally can rattle off a hundred but I’ll spare you.
So we do what we can, when we can. Right?
Here is an example of a dad who could have taught his child a valuable lesson but chose to ignore the opportunity:
I was standing with my grandson on a crowded NYC train. We were in front of two teen girls who were clearly not sick or tired as they giggled and danced in their seats while taking selfies. The dad of one of the girls stood next to me. They all noticed the little boy. How could you not? Poor kid was barely able to hold the subway bar and grandma had to repeatedly remind him while explaining why it was so important.
I was really surprised by their lack of compassion and self absorption but more surprised and disappointed by the dad for not intervening. He missed the chance to be a role model.
What you do at these mini moments will have lasting effects. They build on each other. I encourage us all, and especially parents, to demonstrate kindness and respect whenever possible. Your children will notice.
The following article in Huffington Post highlights 26 things good parents should not do to avoid screwing up their kids. Today’s parents tend to dote, control and live through their children. I just happen to have a new book, hot off the press, which explains how parents can make these changes and why it is so important. It makes a perfect present for new and not so new parents. I think you will all love the cover 🙂
As an educator and a mom, I know for a fact that parenting help is hard to request. Though parents may complain and say they need help they often do not truly think they can change anything. They acknowledge their patterns of behavior may not be the best, but it can always be worse, and in the end they remain stuck in their current situation. Yet everyone will tell you that being a parent is one of the hardest and most important jobs anyone will ever do. This illogical attitude about parent education is simply not acceptable. No parent believes they are perfect yet parents typically behave as if no assistance is required or even possible.
Television, radio and online advertising intrigue us with promises of miracle interventions. Parents who are struggling may pay good money for various programs aimed at refocusing parenting approaches. Some will actually work. Bookstores are filled with books that spout theory and provide insight but lack practical solutions.
My practice serves local families. Through workshops and individual sessions I help parents make big changes for their families. My nine big ideas are practical and provide the foundation for parents to employ simple strategies that can be modified for individual parenting styles and values.
Have a plan for discipline
Be united with your spouse
Choose compromise over control
Encourage responsibility by doing less for your child
Use checklists to support independence
Think about when it makes sense to step back from interfering with natural consequences
When creating consequences try to be creative to give the impression that the consequences are not parent created but merely the result of the situation
Use active listening to enhance communication
Truly accept and appreciate your child by setting aside your own ego
I encourage every family to take time to elevate their parenting skills. You have nothing to lose and so much to gain. Parent education is a must. Whether you see a private coach, attend a workshop or participate in a parent support group, find something that fits your style. Hopefully all families will one day embrace parent education.
If this makes sense to you, learn more about my philosophy, strategies and services.