The needs of a child are relatively simple and besides the basic needs of shelter, education, clothing, food, security and love – kids want to feel accepted. They want to feel special and worthy and by investing their time – parents are able to meet these needs.
The role of a parent is not an easy one – when an infant is born, a book is not issued on the dos and don’ts of parenting, so for the most part moms and dads parent blindly, stumbling along the way but trying their best to be good parents.
Kids want to feel:
- Secure. A routine is one of the best ways to instil a sense of security for a child.
- Confident. Encouragement is one of the best ways to boost a child’s confidence and make them feel brave enough to handle life’s challenge. Parents should be their kid’s biggest fans – spurring them on and helping them up when they fall. Child experts agree that when kids feel confident about themselves, they are less likely to give into peer pressure and will feel comfortable enough to discuss their problems with their parents.
- Cherished. All children want to feel extra special and moms and dads, besides offering words of encouragement, need to ensure that their kids know that are loved unconditionally – no matter what.
- Important – we all want to feel needed and we all want to feel a sense of importance. Parents can help kids to feel this way by taking time out of their day to make time for their kids.
- Be heard. All kids, no matter how old they are want to be heard and they want to voice their opinions. Gone are the days of children should be seen and not heard! Kids should be free to express their feelings and their fears!
- A child wants boundaries! They need to know what is acceptable and is unacceptable behaviour.
How can parents give their kids want they really want?
Time – taking time out of their busy schedules to attending soccer matches, or ballet rehearsals. Taking time out to listen. Find out more about your kid’s friends, what they did at school, etc. Parents need to show an interest in their kid’s lives.
Finding ways to boost their self confidence, such as regular, meaningful compliments. Addressing areas of concern in a positive way. We are all human and kids will not always live up to their parent’s expectations. A child will, at some stage, fail a test at school, they will make up stories and they will not always do as they are told.
Enjoy time together as a family. Kids thrive on quality time, so make an effort to turn off phones, TVs and laptops and spend time enjoying each other’s company.
Give kids tasks that will help them to feel independent. Find ways to reward kids for a job well done, it could be a simple activity, such as having a friend stay over, or staying up a little later.
What kids don’t want
So many parents are under the misconception that money will fix it all and buying kids the latest toys and gadgets will be more than enough to compensate for the lack of time they spend with their children. Kids will remember the little (often thought of insignificant) actions of their parents forever – they will remember the trip to the park, where dad taught them how to ride a bicycle, or where mom see-sawed with them. They will remember that ice-cream they enjoyed on the beach.
All parents want to give the best to their kids – they want them to be happy! Perhaps the next time you dig into your wallet to buy that much desired Playstation game or that brand new (super-duper) racing car with flashing lights, ask yourself, when last did you read to your child? When was the last time, you sat outside with your son or daughter and blew bubbles or marvelled at the wonders of nature?
The benefits of being a responsible and consistent parent
Kids who are made to feel secure, confident, independent, cherished and important will be given the tools they need to cope in the real world. When parents are absent and do not nurture the needs of their kids, the kids will seek acceptance and love from the wrong sources. They will look to their peers for acceptance and when they enter adolescence, they will tend to look for love in all the wrong places! The world we live in is fast paced and our children will need to make it on their own one day, and by allowing them to grow independently, parents are equipping their kids with the necessary tools that will help them cope and thrive in the real world.
Parenting is (without a doubt) one of the most challenging and demanding roles! Each and every day is a learning curve and for the most part, parents parent purely on instinct. Most parents are not psychologists – and we all have the same hopes and that is to raise a child who is happy and confident. Since,most moms and dads are novices – we are bound to slip up and make mistakes, but at the end of the day, kids are resilient and they are usually more than willing to forgive (or even overlook) our weaknesses and shortcomings.
Inspirational quotes on parentingâ€¦.
Parents need to fill a child’s bucket of self-esteem so high that the rest of the world can’t poke enough holes to drain it dry. – Alvin Price
Discipline doesn’t break a child’s spirit half as often as the lack of it breaks a parent’s heart. – Anonymous
All children behave as well as they are treated. – Jan Hunt
To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today. – Anonymous
If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn.
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight.
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy.
If a child learns to feel shame, he learns to feel guilty.
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient.
If a child lives with encouragement he learns confidence
If a child lives with praise, he learns to appreciate.
If a child lives with fairness, he learns justice.
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith.
If a child lives with approval, he learns to like himself.
If a child lives with acceptance and friendship, he learns to find love in the world.
– Dorothy Law Neite