Tuesday March 16 2021

6 Ways You Make A Difference As A Parent

  1. Making Your Kids Feel Worthwhile and Accepted

We communicate acceptance to our children when we let them be themselves. “I accept you now, not only after you change or grow up.” And such acceptance without conditions is essential to a healthy self-esteem, and to helping them develop confidence. 

Show acceptance by accepting others – when your children feel accepted and see you readily accept others, they’ll accept others more easily.

  1. Making Your Kids Feel Important

Every time you make a choice regarding your kids, you send a message. If you can’t make it to a game, even when teenagers claim to not want you there, your kids might think it’s not important to you. It probably doesn’t matter much to you. Just the opposite happens when you do make the effort. Those are lasting impressions that will make a lifelong influence in who your kids become.

Many parents are so busy that the kids aren’t sure where they fit in their parents’ hectic schedules or list of priorities. Every time we make a sacrifice, it’s remembered. How we spend our time, with or without our children, speaks loudly and clearly. 

  1. Making Your Kids Feel Cared For

Something as simple as a daily routine can contribute to a child’s sense of well-being. Clean clothes say “I care.” Food in the refrigerator says it. Good home-cooked meals say it. Help with homework or chores say it. Having a regular expected bedtime is important for learning the value of routine. Allowing open schedules without structure can lead children to expect chaos and accept it as normal.

We’ve got to have a high-touch approach to our kids’ lives rather than a high-tech one. Nowadays, technology can become addicting and distract our children and us from what’s really important. It’s true that it’s a great tool, but we all need to have time-outs from our screens so we know what it’s like to really connect. Being available is one of the most important ways to make someone feel cared for. How would you feel about someone who said you were important but didn’t act like it? Or if someone tried to buy you off by giving you gifts to try to fill the gap? “I love you, but I don’t have time for what’s important to you” is a very confusing message. It hurts.

  1. Helping Your Kids To Develop Good Attitudes

We need to give our best efforts to teach our children good attitudes. As your children grow up in your home, watching your example, what kinds of attitudes are they developing toward relationships, for instance? Are they viewing marriage as a positive commitment? Or are they becoming leery of entrusting themselves to a spouse? When kids have good attitudes, good actions usually follow. If you have trouble with bad actions in your home, don’t just discipline the actions; get to the root of the attitudes. Remember – Attitudes are more caught than taught.

  1. Help Your Kids to Develop Good Responses

How we respond to the crises, threats, and inconveniences that come our way show our kids the real us dealing with the real world. And every example we give them helps determine how they will respond to their own real world.

  1. Helping Your Kids to Develop Good Patterns

Kids watch, listen, and question all we do in determining their own patterns and philosophies of life. They establish their work ethic from how we work. Kids learn priorities from how we spend our time and resources. They learn about God based on how we live out our faith. They watch how we handle everything, first to determine their own beliefs and later to question them to see if they’re valid.

May we not rationalise the negatives of our behaviour as we parent our kids. Remember, the Bible tells us “the heart is deceitful . . . and desperately sick” (Jeremiah 17:9).

Our culture is also deceitful: Don’t let its subtle messages mesmerise you into thinking that being a parent is a waste of your intelligent being. What messages are you hearing, and from whom? Take stock and remember your goal: developing children with solid self-esteem, character, and purpose.

You and I do make a difference by being a parent. Moment by moment, as our children live and learn under our care, we influence them. Whilst they grow up and make their own choices, right now, by being a parent, you have the power to be highly influential. 

Excerpts from Linda Weber – https://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/6-ways-you-make-a-difference-as-a-parent/