Parenting is a job that never ends. If you’ve taken on this job, you need to congratulate yourself. You are responsible for the well-being of another human being.
Nobody is perfect. You set the example of the need for perfection for your child. This is unrealistic and can cause problems down the road.
I also find that children are way overbooked these days. Your child doesn’t have to do everything now. They have a whole lifetime to fulfill their dreams.
Here are 10 easy ways to be a fantastic parent:
1. Don’t try to fix everything.
Give your child a chance to find their own solutions (depending on their age, of course). It’s alright to acknowledge that they’re frustrated, simply by saying “I see you are frustrated.”
2. Play with your child.
I know that almost all children love video games, which is alright if they are the non-violent type and they don’t play them for more than an hour a day. But, they don’t always allow for a parent to play with them. Try some board games.
I have two nephews ages 4 and 6, they love to play Junior Monopoly. I love to hear them talk about the game and what they’re learning as they play. Play is one of the best ways to connect with a child.
3. Cheer the good stuff.
Let your child know when they are doing something helpful or nice. Cheer them on with enthusiasm.
4. Respect parenting differences.
If your spouse thinks it’s important they take on a few chores, then be supportive. When you argue or criticize one another in front of your child, you can actually do more harm than good.
5. Savor the moments.
I know parenting is the most exhausting job on the planet. Your house is a mess, the dishes are stacked up in the sink, and now your dog needs to go for a walk. When does it end?
6. Get kids moving.
Let your toddler walk, rather than you carrying them or be in the stroller. Make sure to create opportunities for your child to exercise as they get older. Let them play and run around outside.
Not only will they get exercise, they will get natural light. This is a great way to get Vitamin D, which we all need.
7. Don’t be afraid to take charge.
Children want and need limits. This actually lets them know that you love and care for them. This can also help them make sense of a confusing world.
8. Read books together every day.
Whenever I do this for my nephews, they don’t want me to stop. They always bring a few books.
9. Schedule daily special time.
I know you are busy. But, carve out 15-20 minutes a day to spend with your child. This is a great way to show your love. This can be when your child gets home from school.
10. Give yourself a break.
I often tell parents that good parents make mistakes. What’s important is that you learn from your mistakes. This also teaches your child that it’s alright to make mistakes.
There you go. Simple, right?
I know parenting can change on a daily basis. I also know your parenting style changes and your child gets older. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or reach out.
All parents struggle at times. The more you talk about your struggles, the more you will see you aren’t alone.