The way parents brings up their children can make a huge difference to their behaviour and overall development. Every parent loves his or her child, but most of them do not realise the importance of good parenting.
Don't just be a good parent, be the best parent you can be. Try and make the right decisions and build your child's confidence. Read on.
Try and build your child's confidence levels at every step. Your child starts developing insecurities from the time she is a baby. Little things you do like changing her nappy as soon as she is wet, spending time with her, not ignoring her cries and so on, go a long way in making her feel more secure. Praise your older child when she does something well and when she needs to be checked, don't criticize her, but criticize the wrong action. Never call your child stupid, and be careful to never insult her. Encourage her to take up a sport. Being good in a particular activity can really make your child feel special and do wonders for her self-confidence.
Pay attention to your child's education. Don't focus only on exam results. Just because your child does well in his exams doesn't mean she will be successful in life. Teach your child to look at the larger picture. Help her figure out what she wants to do, and then help her decide what she needs to study or take up in order to achieve her goals.
Drugs and other bad habits
There will come a time when your child will be exposed to others who perhaps do drugs, smoke or drink and drive, and being a responsible parent you will certainly not want your child to indulge in such habits. Keeping your child away from all parties is one answer, but a more practical approach would be to be picky about allowing your child to go out with a certain crowd. Get to know your child's friends and get to know their parents. Also, make it a point to communicate regularly with your teenager. Educate her about the dangers of drugs and smoking. Discourage her from drinking when she is young - the legal age for drinking in many countries is 21, so let her wait until then. Don't appear all shocked when you hear about a friend who drinks, because she may feel it is normal and you don't understand. Instead, let her know that if that is what her friend wants to do, it is fine, but you would rather your daughter focus on her education at this point and achieve the goals she has laid out for herself. Once again, it is important for your child to have a goal, so she will work towards something, and she will not just be studying because everyone else does it and graduation is just something one needs to do and get over with.
The importance of communicating with your child can never be stressed enough. As parents we may have a million other things on our mind, and may not always be free to sit and spend hours chatting with our children - but this is something we must make time for if we want to strengthen the bond we share and be able to influence our child to make the right decisions in life. If your child wants to talk to you, it doesn't matter what other work requires your attention. Give it a break for ten minutes and focus on your child. Get your priorities in order, so you can help your child do the same.