5 Parenting Tips

5 Parenting Tips

5 Parenting Tips – Parenting is the hardest thing I have ever done. It is also the most rewarding. Trust me, my husband and I are just like you in that we struggle and we watch our friends struggle with the demands of parenting. I’m sure you know the drill – some days you are making all the right calls and your kids are responding, and other days your family life is like a roller coaster at Six Flags. Here are my 5 Parenting Tips that I hope help you be consistent in parenting and groom some amazing kids.

As a busy momma of three who owns her own business, I see it first hand. We are together all the time. I pick them up from school, I take them to practices, I help with their homework, I push to put healthy food in their bellies. We are as close as we have ever been, but it can also get hectic!

As a parent, you are just trying to do the right thing.

So what is the right parenting style? I asked friend with older children Parenting Tips the day our daughter was born. Some parents want to give their children as much independence as possible – I call this free range parenting, and those who use it argue that it better prepares their children for the adult world. Others endlessly hover over their kids like helicopters and pay extremely close attention to their experiences and problems.

In our family, we have found that neither extreme has worked for us. We believe the key to parenting success is to simply be consistent. This is easier said than done, but here are my 5 parenting tips to be a consistent parent.

  1. Get On The Same Page

Remember when you were a kid and you asked mom for something, and when she said no, you immediately wen to dad to ask him. Well it’s funny to see our kids do the same thing. Let’s face it, one parent is more laid back or more tough than the other. Kids can smell this a mile away. Brett and I finally made an agreement to talk amongst ourselves before responding to one of our children’s requests. This keeps us on the same page.

You and your spouse need to agree on your parenting style, preferably before you venture off into having children. You must communicate constantly, because parents who are not communicating are inevitably the ones who have the most problems. Children are smart and they will play mom and dad against each other to get what they want if the parents are not talking about how they are parenting. Talk. Period.

  1. Be Clear About Expectations (Rules) And Consequences

Perhaps you have heard the phrase, “inconsistent application of rules.” Children cannot magically know what they should and should not be doing, and you can’t expect them to always do the right things if you are constantly changing the rules.

I mean, what do you think would happen if I – a health and fitness coach who prides herself on teaching people the right way to take care of themselves – broke down every time my kids wanted to go to Sonic on the way home from school? What do you think would happen if I slacked on having them do homework as soon as we get home from school? I can tell you exactly what would happen, my kids would expect me to break down in every other part of our house rules. It would create chaos and conflict.

To be consistent in how you parent, you must clearly define your expectations for your child and the consequences if they don’t listen. You must also be consistent in how you live your own life, and the expectations you hold for yourself. It will rub off on your kids.

When the expectations and consequences are clear, dolling out the consequences is WAY easier. This is probably the most important parenting tip for me!

  1. Practice Authoritative Parenting

The authoritative parent sets high standards, is nurturing and responsive, and shows respect for children as independent, rational beings. Studies consistently show that the children of authoritative parents do better than children of 1. parents who demand blind obedience and are relatively unloving, and 2. parents who are loving but permissive.

Each child is different and you probably will need to approach each one differently with your parenting. Lord knows each of my kiddos are unique and require different levels of parenting.

  1. Give Progressive Independence

As parents in a fast-paced, touch screen, drive-through society obsessed with the result at the expense of the process, it is easy to do everything for children. It’s faster. It’s easier. It’s more efficient. However, the journey to adulthood is the most important journey your child will ever take. Parenting tip four is a balance of independence and allowing them to learn through mistakes.

Prepare them by giving progressively more independence, and acknowledge good decisions. Reward those good decisions with even more independence. Our daughter Lucy is the oldest of our three children, and I am frequently looking for ways to make sure she understands the importance of being a woman, and how much responsibility is involved. We are teaching her, especially as she nears high school, how to critically think, make predictions, test out ideas, work with others, learn from failures and the value of persistence.

This way, if {and when} she makes mistakes, I can be there to provide guidance and support as her mother.

  1. Don’t Worry About Being Liked

The fifth parenting tip, and this is the hard one for me, is to always be their parent first, not their friend. I have worked so hard to be liked and trusted by my clients, that I naturally want the same from my own children. But no matter what you do, as your child grows older and the more independent they become, they will want you involved less and less.

Focus on building your relationship with your children by practicing consistent parenting and you will be a great friend and a trusted resource for them when they are adults.