Instilling important values in a child is one of the most influential things a parent can do in order to prepare him or her for success in the future. When a child learns to do hard work, have compassion for others, act in a responsible manner, and other similar things, he or she can be positioned to thrive. As media is so pervasive and inescapable these days, and outside influences have a huge effect on your child regardless of your efforts, it is more important than ever that parents think carefully about how they want to impart these life lessons. Here are some tips to make sure you do it right.
Practice What You Preach
You may think that telling your child that lying is wrong will be enough to get this message across, but what if he or she then hears you telling a white lie to someone? This could be confusing to him or her, and the lesson learned might be that someone’s actions are not always aligned with his or her words. This is why it is vital that you walk the walk as well as talk the talk.
Explain the Reasons Behind Your Beliefs
It is helpful if your young one knows not just the what, but also the why of your actions. For example, if you do not allow them to spend hours on social media, or play violent video games, and then you tell them your rationale behind your actions, you are giving them the message that these activities are not in line with your core values. Even if they do not like the decisions you have made, at least they will be aware of what the thinking behind them is. Continue reading
Children develop in different ways, and some of them have difficulties when it comes to mastering basic speech and language skills. They may have trouble pronouncing certain sounds, maintaining a normal flow of speech, or making their voices resonate. Speech therapists can help children overcome all of these disorders and speak in a more articulate manner.
Types of Speech Disorders
There are several types of speech disorders, including:
- articulation disorders
- fluency disorders
- voice or resonance disorders
- language disorders
If your children are getting angry often with frequent outbursts of rage and defiance, you may want to help them with managing their anger. Anger is a natural and healthy emotion. However, if it becomes destructive and affects your child’s functioning in life, such as fights at school, few peer relationships, and impaired family relationships, then he or she may need to learn how to manage that anger.
Male and female children might express anger differently and have different relationships to this intense emotion. Of course, this isn’t true for all children, but typically society teaches males to express their anger outwardly while females learn to keep anger to themselves, expressing it only when it feels safe to do so. Continue reading
Self esteem could be described as having confidence in oneself. It’s having confidence in one’s abilities and having respect for who one is inside and out. Yet, there are so many factors that can contribute to a child’s self esteem, and the way that parents respond to their children can play a large role in lifting a child’s sense of self.
The following tips are ways that parent’s can help improve the self esteem and self confidence of their children.
Look for the good in your child. Instead of seeing the A he should have gotten, praise him on the B that he did get. Instead of seeing the marks that your daughter got on her term paper, praise her for researching and completing the paper in the first place. The emphasis on what he or she is doing well can help those positive behaviors grow. Although it might be apparent that praising your child can significantly support his or her positive sense of self, it’s easy to get caught up in the tasks of the day, chores and responsibilities, and the to-do list. For some parents, it’s easy to forget that relationships come first, and with that, seeing what your child did right instead of what he or she didn’t do can have significant impact on how she feels about her life. Continue reading
The digital age seems to be taking over the mind. We don’t have to remember phone numbers anymore or keep time or remember anniversaries. Our digital phones, computers, and Ipads are doing it for us. And it might make you wonder how the digital experience is affecting children today. In psychology and science, researchers are curious about that too.
An article in the New York Times points out that texting, which can be incredibly distracting, can take a toll on a teen’s mental health. From a study done by Pew Research Center, children are texting over 50 texts per day, and one third of children are texting 100 or more per day. One in seven children send more than 200 texts. It’s easier, they say, to text than to make a phone call.
The pattern of over-texting, however, has been a recent concern for doctors and psychologists. Sherry Turkle, a psychologist and director at Initiative on Technology believes that the excessive texting may cause a shift in the way teens develop. There’s a constant disruption in a teen’s attention from the task at hand, whatever that might be, to a text, back to his or her current activity, and back to the phone again. There’s very little ability to stay focused. Continue reading
We all need to manage the stress of life. We need coping mechanisms so that the responsibilities of life don’t become overwhelming or unmanageable.
To cope means the ability to deal effectively with something difficult. For instance, you might feel stuck in situations that are not under your control. You’re required to do things you don’t want to do or attend events that you don’t want to participate in. As an adult, you likely have stress relieving techniques to help you manage life stress. And it’s important to share those techniques to your children.
The following are suggestions for relaxation techniques and coping mechanisms that you might want to use yourself and that you can share with children and teenagers. For instance, you might need to take breaks throughout the day to be with yourself. As you’ll read about below, you might need to take a break from technology or listen to relaxing music. And when stress is high, you might need to know of a helpful coping mechanism to use right in the middle of a stressful moment, such as deep breathing. Three ways to cope with stress are: Continue reading
Often, both children and adults hold on to early debilitating beliefs without ever really knowing it. For instance, there might have been an early experience that led to damaging thoughts. Or in many cases, the self-esteem of a parent can have an influence on the self esteem of their children.
If children suffer from a low self esteem, the effects of the associated dysfunctional thought patterns can be seen in almost every aspect of life – poor grades, little money, few relationships, or jobs that don’t reflect the value of their skills. However, with children, there is a greater opportunity to curtail that downward spiraling thinking into thoughts and beliefs that are more loving, self-affirming, and accepting.
As a caregiver or parent, you have the opportunity to do this with your child. Of course, one obvious way to do this is to look for the good in your child. Instead of seeing the “A” he should have gotten, praise him on the “B” that he did get. Instead of seeing the marks that your daughter got on her science project, praise her for researching and completing the project in the first place. The emphasis on what he or she is doing well can help those positive behaviors grow. Although it might be apparent that praising your child can significantly support his or her positive sense of self, it’s easy to get caught up in the tasks of the day, chores and responsibilities, and the to-do list. For some parents, it’s easy to forget that relationships come first, and with that, seeing what your child did right instead of what he or she didn’t do can have significant impact on how she feels about her life. Continue reading
As parents we are more than just a guide for our children, we can model what it’s like to have to manage the stresses of life while staying calm and relaxed. For instance, even though you know the bills need to get paid, even though you might have a temporary conflict with your spouse, even though the house needs to get clean, as a parent, you have the ability to tend to your children’s needs in the moment, while putting everything else aside.
It’s the ability to put things to rest temporarily. It’s the ability to be fully present with your child while keeping all the other responsibilities of life at bay. And one way to do this is to practice a form of relaxation. Although this might not suit everyone, there’s no question that relaxation plays an essential role in the mental, physical, and emotional health of individuals, whether they are parents or not. Continue reading
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is an impulse-control disorder that is a commonly diagnosed among children. In fact, it is so common that some clinicians believe it is grossly overly diagnosed for the benefit of pharmaceutical companies. At the same time, parents frequently like having a diagnosis, even though it might be wrong, because it helps them understand the misbehavior of their child. Yet, for these reasons and more, ADHD is the most frequently diagnosed childhood mental illness. Continue reading
If you’re a single parent, especially the parent of a child who often gets into trouble, perhaps it’s time to get him or her a mentor. You might already know but a mentor is an experienced and trusted advisor, or someone your child can rely on. A mentor can advise and help instill in your child personality traits and habits for becoming a successful adult.
Mentoring is a partnership between two people (the mentee, your child, and the mentor). Mentoring provides children with the opportunity to think about how they are growing, learning, and developing. Continue reading