There’s no handbook out there telling you how to be a great parent, and there are heaps of different parenting styles you can choose to adopt - each of which have their own merits! However there are a few consistent traits and qualities that seem to be consists in effective parenting. Here are 4 qualities often found in fantastic parents!
1) Being Non-Judgemental
Judging is human nature! We all do it, and sometimes it’s a hard habit to break. However, being judgemental when it comes to ideas your little one has brought up can result in them having a negative childhood experience. Caroline Lewis, who runs the teen and young adult life coaching site, Self Project shares more on this:
“To be a great parent, listening is the number one skill I have learned both as a parent and a coach. Validation and ‘being heard’ is what kids need and want. Discarding the ‘judge-y face’ is important in order for a child to be comfortable to approach you for ANY issues large or small. I have the confidence of many teens who are too fearful to tell their parents they are gay, bullied, failing or struggling with anxieties as they don’t want to upset, let down or disappoint their parents.”
For more awesome advice, check out the Self Project’s Facebook page!
2) Be There For The Serious Stuff & The Fun Moments
As a parent, it’s essential you’re there for the tough moments, to coax your little ones through challenges. However, you do need to know how to kick back and be a little silly. Tennille Graham from Cloth Nappy Doctor shares a few of her tips:
- Listening to your gut when a situation feels not quite right, and being courageous enough to question the status quo
- Being spontaneously silly, such as asking your kids to do something in a funny voice instead of the boring monotone
- Being adaptable to your kids needs and giving them time and space to express themselves
For more tips and tricks from Tennille, check out her Facebook page. If you’re on the lookout for more fun and silly moments with your kids, browse discount swings online, and other fun play items that will help you bond with your little ones. Continuously come up with new and exciting ways to interact and spend time with your children. Have lunch on a kids picnic table out in the yard, or check out a new playground - plans don’t have to be intricate or expensive!
3) Flexibility & Consistency
Claire Orange, shares her tips and reasons on why being flexible and consistent with children is the best approach:
“Parenting is an art rather than a science and good parents know that flexibility, predictability and consistency are the cornerstones of getting it right. I appear each week on Channel 9 in Perth as their Parenting Expert, talking about how to go about parenting successfully. You may wish to read some blogs I have written on my website: www.bestprograms4kids.com/news/. As the mum of 4 boys, I know that parenting can be difficult, draining and downright devastating at times. However, when parents go about their job of raising their young person/people using a predictable set of rules that are enforced consistently then the formula for success is set.”
For more advice, check out Claire’s Facebook page!
4) Empathetic & Caring
As a parent, you want to be that person your child can run to in times of crisis. Here is what Jay Anderson, registered psychologist and counsellor at SW Wellbeing Centre, has to say on the subject:
“The qualities for a great parent, in my view, include - being caring and empathetic. Parents who are willing to spend time with their children and listen to them. Helping the child learn about the world and about emotions and how to manage them. Parents who are responsive to a child’s needs - their emotional needs, as well as their physical needs. Parents need to be good role models - showing their child the values they hold important - respecting others, honesty, commitment etc - so the child learns - how to interact with other people, how to manage their own emotions, and skills in navigating the world we live in.”
To find out more - check out Jay’s other website, My Child My Family!
Hopefully this gave you a little insight into some characteristics that are imperative to quality parenting, and can help you to avoid crucial mistakes! Connecting with your children is important, and the moves you make when they are young will set the foundation for your relationship as they grow up! Parenting is tricky, but with good advice and a great support network, it can be a joyful adventure!