When we are in the thick of life, trying to survive, it can be hard to appreciate what we have, particularly when it comes to our children. That’s why it is sometimes important to take a step back and look at our lives for what they are.
In this post, we take a look at some of the ways that parents can appreciate their children. Here is what to do:
Keep Your Promises
Children want to feel appreciated by their parents, not just like they are a burden. Therefore, it is always a good idea to keep your promises. If you do what you say you will do, then your kids are much more likely to trust and respect you.
The trick here is to treat your kids as you might your work colleagues. If you told a coworker that you would have a project done by Monday, the chances are that you would do it. Apply the same standards to your kids to ensure that they appreciate and respect you for who you are. Remember, kids are incredibly sensitive to this sort of thing.
Tell Your Kids You Love Them
You do not have to force the matter, but telling your kids that you love them can really help. And do not say it in a way that you expect them to tell you that they love you back. Instead, just throw it out there and see how they react. Over time, they will feel more secure and happy in their lives, and they will come to reciprocate.
Do Little Favors For Them
Children really notice it when you go the extra mile to appreciate them. Sneaking it little favors here and there can be a powerful way to build a bond or connection between you.
It can sometimes be hard to find the perfect gift but do not give up. Keep searching for something that they would love to show that you really understand them.
Give Your Child A Seat At The Table When Making Family Decisions
Many parents make decisions without consulting their children first. They simply decide what is best for them financially and then roll with it. The kids might complain, but that does not matter. Parents always know best.
This attitude, though, makes children feel underappreciated. Many kids would love to be a part of family decision-making but feel shut out because of the actions of their parents.
Unless it is a sensitive matter, there is no reason why kids should not be involved in family discussions. In fact, involving them could provide you with ideas to overcome the problems you face.
Spend More Time Listening To Your Child
Children want to feel heard, particularly as they get older. Therefore, listening is one of the most powerful things you can do as a parent to make them feel appreciated.
Take some time out to just absorb what they say without feeling like you need to come back with some sort of moral instruction or prescription. Just take time to understand the emotional basis for how they behave and then use that to understand them more. Often, you will discover that you find out more about your child through just a few minutes of active listening than you do all year, just going through the motions.
When having a conversation, try to avoid gravitating towards topics that only interest adults, such as work or the stock market. Focus more on the type of subjects that are likely to interest kids.
If your child feels that they have something important to say, listen to them. Even if it seems trivial to you, try to understand the emotional basis for it. Look for where your child is coming from so that you can understand them better in the future. Take the lessons you learn when you listen to your child and apply them more widely to their life in general.
Get Them Out Of Their Shell
Children can sometimes feel cloistered, unable to express themselves in the way that they would like, particularly if they feel like they have to be the perfect son or daughter.
Patents, therefore, can make their kids feel appreciated by letting them express themselves freely. If your child acts out, avoid the habit of judging them harshly. Just remember that they are human beings with needs and desires, too. Just like you, they want to be able to do the things that they want to do, without somebody else telling them that they cannot.
When you stop making judgments and see your kids as mini scientists, conducting experiments, it changes your perspective. You stop coming down on them with the full force or moral might and, instead, provide them with space and freedom to be themselves. You will notice that the less cloistered they feel, the happier and better behaved they become. The absence of harsh parenting makes it easier for them to regulate their own behavior.
Let Them Do What They Find Fun
As a parent, you never quite know what your kids will find fun. In fact, sometimes the results can be surprising. Kids seem to extract delight from the smallest things in life: stuff you would never expect.
You do not usually need to ask children what they would enjoy. Instead, their activities usually speak for themselves. Just pay attention to what they enjoy doing and then start thinking outside of the box about how you can support them.
For instance, if your kids love to play with toy cameras, get them a real digital one and let them play with it. They could have hours of fun, and who knows, it might just turn into a future career for them.
Support Your Kids When They Do Something You Want
Getting your kids to do things you want them to do is hard. They have a mind of their own. However, you can encourage them to move in the right direction by supporting them whenever they exhibit a behavior that is good for them. Keep practicing with your kids and get them to move in the right direction. If they do something that is good, spend time praising them. Do not just focus on all the negatives and bad behavior. You want to build your kids up, not bring them down.