Parenting is one of the most rewarding jobs a parent can do, however it has to be acknowledged that it can also be one of the most frustrating and stressful jobs.
Positive parenting is about parenting in a balanced manner. It’s about developing a strong, deeply committed relationship between parent and child based on communication and mutual respect. It focuses on teaching children and helping them to develop self-control.
How can I implement positive parenting techniques?
Set good routines:
Having consistent daily routines regarding sleeping, eating, homework, chores, etc, is important. It’s even more important now as children are at home and out of the routine of going to school, taking part in activities, seeing friends, etc.
Say what you mean and mean what you say.
- Be consistent in your discipline and response.
- Teach your child what is acceptable and what isn’t.
- If you have set a rule, it is important that you follow through.
- Only make a promise to a child if you can keep that promise.
- It is important to build trust, but also to role model a certain expectation within the household.
- Failure to give your child/ren consistent messages may lead to poor behaviour and leave them feeling confused as to what is expected of them. As a result, they may feel insecure about how to behave or act.
Spend time together:
Attention is the best present you can give your child. If you can, take advantage of staying at home during Covid-19. Life had become so hectic for families that time became very precious. Use the time now to be together.
- Having time together makes your child feel loved, more secure and valued.
- Spending time does not always mean spending money. Sitting on the floor playing with a baby, reading stories, playing board games, going for family walks or having family movie nights can all mean spending positive time together.
- Some families have a ‘date night’ where a parent and child will have some individual time together.
Having time for yourself as a busy parent is important and even more so now. During Covid-19 we are all spending a lot of time together in our homes and only leaving for essential journeys. It is important that a parent feels that their needs are being met also. A stressed out parent will not parent to the best of their ability.
- Having an outlet each week for yourself, such as taking part in an online class, is healthy for your own wellbeing but also role models positive behaviour to your child. This can also play an important part in keeping parents and families connected to their wider community.
Accepting support as a parent can be difficult. However at some stages through the parenting process, no matter how well equipped you may feel you are as a parent, we all need to accept some help and support. This support can be in the form of advice from friends and family, teachers or other professionals.
Don’t be afraid to say ‘yes’ to support – as the old African proverb says, ‘it takes a village to raise a child’.