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Keep It Simple—Parenting Doesn’t Need to Be Hard

Keep It Simple—Parenting Doesn’t Need to Be Hard

Kids don’t come with instruction manuals and parents don’t get training on how to parent. As a result, parenting can seem to be very hard for many parents, sometimes even impossible. Despite the many challenges facing your family, you can take the stress out of parenting and learn how to raise competent people using simple, practical, time-tested parenting skills

Do great parents use a large variety of good parenting skills? Not typically! Great parents don’t overwhelm themselves by trying to use every trick in the book. Instead, they rely on a small number of skills, yet they apply them consistently.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your kids, could it be that you’re trying too hard to do too many things? Is it time to get back to the basics? What are the basics? Listed below are the top three I’ve observed from my experience with thousands of truly great parents and educators:

  • They demonstrate unconditional warmth and love.
    Kids feel this magical type of love when their parents spend plenty of time with them, when their parents focus on their strengths, and when their parents display empathy instead of anger or sarcasm when things go wrong.

  • Their “yes” is always “yes” and their “no” is always “no.”
    Great parents are extremely careful to set only the limits they know they can enforce. They remember this important rule for setting limits:

    Never tell a stubborn child what to do—instead, describe what you will do or allow.

  • They allow their kids to experience the logical and natural consequences of their decisions.
    Isn’t it hard to watch our kids struggle with the consequences of their mistakes? While it breaks our hearts at times, allowing them to learn in this way gives them a tremendous advantage as they grow. They develop respect, responsibility, and a good grasp of good old-fashioned common sense.

One other important characteristic of great parents is that they always display empathy rather than anger. Raising great kids really can be a joy when we remember that we don’t have to overcomplicate things with too many skills and too much theory. Keep it simple and enjoy your kids.

 

Thanks for reading!

Dr. Charles Fay