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Tools For Effective Parenting

Sep 4, 2008
At times, the direction for raising our children to be responsible, successful young adults is difficult to decipher. We have tried to set up parenting skills with this goal as the end in order to be more effective at getting this great end result. We find we are most successful parents when we remember to fall back on what we have decided instead of trying to reinvent the wheel with each new situation.

So how do we accomplish this daunting task? By teaching our kids two skills - problem-solving and accountability. If you've got a disrespectful, belligerent child, you've probably got a child with a problem he doesn't know how to solve. As a effective parent, we need to step them through the process of solving that problem, and being accountable for their actions.

1. Problem solving is a process. Problem solving is difficult, otherwise we wouldn't have any problems. Many kids with abusive behaviors don't have the patience for the problem solving process. Parents need to understand the importance of problem solving in the learning process and not do it for the child. The time to start is when they're young, because the problems are more easily solved then, even though the child may feel like they're monumental. As they get older, they will be more able to solve the bigger problems if they've had experience with the smaller ones when they were young.

2. Life Trainer. In order to point them towards being successful, responsible adults, we must patiently and unemotionally as possible, point them towards the goal. Support and encouragement are vital tools as effective parents. Still remembering to let the outcome of this learning process to be owned by the child.

3. Do as I do, not as I say. What? Yep that is how it really works. Your actions and words of course need to match. But if they don't, they are going to copy what you do. Calmly handling life's curveballs as their little eyes observe is your best teaching technique. Also let them start fending for themselves as soon as possible. Pushing the elevator button may seem like kids play, and looking at the directory to find the floor you need first, empowers them with life skills.

4. Be wise on when and what you teach them. Use your parent's guage to determine what level of maturity they are at to determine what they can be successful at within a reasonable amount of time. Our goal is to teach them not defeat them. Let the bedspread be crooked and the crumbs be swept from the counter to the floor. Save perfecting these skills for the appropriate times down the road.

5. Encourage their own problem solving techniques. When they start into adolescence, its time to let them try out what they have learned, on their own. Your job is to let go of more and more control, and praise and encourage their willingness to step up.

6. Recognize setbacks and failures as opportunities. Everyone experiences successes and failures. Kids can learn from both, probably more from the failures than from the successes. Also, keep the failures in perspective. Don't freak out when they make a mistake - use it as a teaching opportunity.

While parenting, especially effective parenting, is a formidable task, do not lose heart. Especially with your teens. These previously mentioned skills will hopefully help you.
About the Author
Put a halt to your child's out-of-control, defiant behavior RIGHT NOW! Regain control of your house today. Now you can learn how to parent difficult kids at Julie and Matt's parenting journey blog.
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