While it may seem as though some people were born to be parents, a good parent has unique skills that can be developed over time. Being concerned that you’re not the best parent you could be is only natural. However, if you really want to hone your parenting skills, here are a few attributes that you can try to polish.
Teach Healthy Eating Habits
You can talk about the importance of eating healthy as much as you like, but it’s not going to do much good if your child rarely sees you without a soda in your hand. Children learn by mimicking their parents, so, if they have healthy parents, they’re going to be healthy children. This means adopting a primarily plant-based diet that also includes whole grains and plenty of water. If you eat healthily and only buy nutritious foods, your children will grow up to understand this is how they should be eating.
Teach Healthy Ways to Manage Stress
We all experience stress, even young children. If you manage stress by becoming angry, or by turning to cigarettes, coffee, or alcohol, your child is going to assume this is the best way to handle stress. If you’re constantly turning to substances for managing stress, seek treatment right away. There are alcohol programs for help with addiction and similar programs for those struggling with drugs. You can simultaneously exercise or meditate to cope with stress. You’ll be healthier and you’ll be teaching your children healthier ways to manage their own stress. You may even discover that these are activities you can do together with your children.
Express Your Love Openly
Children raised with love grow up to become better-adjusted adults, while children who are regularly judged and criticized often develop self-esteem problems later in life. Instead of criticizing, try looking for ways to compliment your children. You’ll find that positive reinforcement also encourages your children to try to do good more often. If you can express your love, pride, and compassion for your child, they’ll also develop empathy for others and have more successful relationships as they grow into adulthood.
Communicate More Openly
There are two sides to being an open communicator. First, in telling your children to do something, explain the reasons you want them to complete that task. This helps them feel respected as a member of the household and will help them understand their responsibilities better. Secondly, be an attentive listener as your child opens up to you. While something may not be as important to you, your child is probably sharing the news of their fight with their best friend for a reason. They’re very bothered and may be hoping for your thoughts.
Flexibility and Creativity
These are two attributes, but they go hand in hand. Caring for young children requires you to be flexible enough to change an established routine at a moment’s notice. Why is this important? This is where creativity comes in. As well as helping you play make-believe with your children, your sense of creativity will help you see the world through your child’s eyes. This will help you understand why they don’t want to go to the park today, or why stopped socializing with certain friends. You may find that a flexible and creative nature will help you to become more involved in your child’s world on a daily basis.
There’s no such thing as a perfect parent. We all have our flaws just like we each have our better traits. While you can work at improving your weaker traits, don’t let yourself become obsessed with perfection. As long as you love and care for your child to the best of your ability, your child will grow up healthy, loving, and grateful for the sacrifices you have made.
*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.