STEPS TO MORE EFFECTIVE PARENTING

Many nine to five jobs come with an employee handbooks or if not, at least some sort of guide as to how to do the job. Well, any parent knows that raising a child, comes with no instructions and can feel like, at times, a blind jump into the deep end of the pool.

Needless to say, many parents aren't prepared for the job of raising kids, but it doesn't have to be as daunting as you think. Here are some tips to help you navigate through one of the most fulfilling jobs in the world.

1. Boost your child's self-esteem Every chance you get, be your child's cheerleader! Children start to develop a sense of self as babies and see themselves through their parents' eyes. Praising their accomplishments, no matter how big or small, will make them feel proud of themselves helping them to grow into capable and strong adults.

2.  Be consistent with discipline Studies show that children thrive on consistent discipline and need to have boundaries set for them. Set the bar for what is expected and children will rise to the occasion. The goal of discipline is to help children distinguish between acceptable behaviors and learn good self-control habits for themselves. They will test the boundaries, but never waver, remain firm, and they will appreciate it when they are older.

3. Schedule fun time In today's society, everyone is constantly busy and headed in different directions. Set special time aside for you and children to bond. It can be ten minutes in the morning over breakfast or a steady Saturday movie/dinner date. Whatever you choose, turn off the cell phone and dedicate that time just to your kid. You will find that this time is something that they will cherish and remember a lifetime.

4. Be a role model Children mimic behavior and they will learn how to act by watching you. Model the traits that you wish to see in your children. Exhibit behavior that you want them to copy. Basically, be the person that you want them to be. Think about your actions before you act and react because your "mini-me" is looking to you to set the tone for the adults that they become.

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

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