We all want to raise resilient and happy children. However, this is not easily achieved. Many have turned to positive parenting solutions to find answers on how to raise happy kids.
But is positive parenting solutions the key that would connect the dots in raising a happy child?
The positive parenting solutions method focuses on parents bringing out positive vibes that will transcend to their children.
This method is the opposite of helicopter parenting as it focuses on the parent first rather than the child.
As the saying goes ” happy mom, equals happy baby”. Hence the positive parenting solutions are looking at how parents can fist feel happy then only raise their child to be positive and grateful.
This is also one of the main reasons that bring popularity in the positive parenting solutions method and it actually works.
Now let’s dive deeper into this technique.
What is positive parenting solutions?
Positive parenting is defined as parents who empower, nurture, and respect children in their own rights.
There are 10 main principles of positive parenting techniques:
- Understanding a child’s behavior
- Being consistent
- Discipline, do not punish
- Focus on things you can control
- Rewards that matter: Rewarding a child only when they have achieved a certain goal
- Nurture: Providing children with love and security
- Structure: Providing children with guidance, routine and boundaries
- Recognition: Listening to the child and valuing their opinion
- Empowerment: Developing a child’s ability
- Non-violent environment: Protecting them from any form of physical or psychological punishment.
Using the 10 principles above, parents will be able to raise happy and confident children.
In this blog, we will go through each of the 5 aspects of positive parenting solutions and techniques.
Before that, let us take a closer look at the importance of positive parenting solutions.
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Why is positive parenting solutions important?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, around 80% of children would have been physically punished by the time they reach fifth grade.
Physical punishment includes spanking and hitting. It has shown that this leads to more aggressive behavior in children by the time they reach adulthood.
It is recommended that parents use more positive parenting techniques, which is referred to as positive parenting by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
A study found that young people who have a positive relationship with their families are likely to be engaged in school and have higher self-confidence and better grades.
It also shows that fostering positive relationships with children from a young age impacts their future relationship with their spouse and children
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Positive parenting solutions technique:
1.Understanding a child’s behavior
The experts in positive parenting agree that there will always be a reason as to why a child is behaving negatively.
Tantrums do not just happen without a reason. There is a reason as to why a child decides to throw a tantrum.
In younger children like toddlers, it could be their inability to express dissatisfaction or needs. Or it could just be seeking your attention. Essentially, there is a reason for their behavior.
According to the positive parenting solution course that “the behavior itself is simply the symptom. The challenge for parents is figuring out the cause of it.
In an ideal world, we all want our child to say “Mommy, I am feeling upset and I would like to spend some time with you”. However, the chances of a child saying that is almost close to impossible.
Hence, a child throws their tantrums to seek our attention. The truth is that when a child does not get our attention in a good way, they will find other ways to get it. This would include pushing our buttons.
The next time your child is throwing that tantrum, step back, and just watch your child. Try to understand what your child is trying to accomplish.
Once you are able to get to the bottom of the issue, you will be more Proactive in avoiding that from happening in the first place.
For example, say you are working on your laptop and your child starts pressing on the keyboard button. While still trying to focus you yell at your child and say “stop that right now”. However, your child carries on.
By this point, you get frustrated and most likely not accomplish what you set to do.
Instead, try 10 minutes before starting work on your laptop, inform your child “Mommy needs to do some work in about 10 minutes, so let’s play a quick game first and then I can do my work.”
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During that 10 minutes focus on your child only, do not do anything else. Remind them how fun it is playing games with your child. Say something like ” Wow this was fun, let me finish my work now and we can play again.”
Then give them something to do while you finish your work. This could be screen activity or any other activities to keep them busy.
If your child is old enough that they can write, then leave a pen and paper and get them to write it down if something urgent comes up.
Using such positive parenting techniques, you are informing your child what to expect ahead of time.
Most likely your child will be better behaved when you need to do your work.
2. Be consistent
As parents, we all know the importance of consistency. However, when implementing it with our child it may not be very easy to do.
This becomes a challenge when school is canceled, additional works come in the way, and so on. While we cannot control everything that happens in our life, we need to try our best to main structure and consistency in our children’s lives.
For instance, look into your child’s bedtime routine. Are they expected to be sleeping before 8p,m, no devices in the bedroom, brushing their teeth before sleeping, etc?
Have the same structure even during weekends and holidays. This way your child does not need to ease back into a routine during the weekend.
Be clear on what your expectations are with your child. For instance, when it comes to technology set clear rules and boundaries. More importantly, model the same behavior.
Have consequences set out if rules are being broken and stick to them? It is also crucial that both parents are consistent with the rule. This will discourage children from seeking attention from the other parent.
By setting clear rules and boundaries children are less likely to push their limits.
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3. Rewards that matter
Positive parenting solutions suggest that rewards should be discouraged. The reason is although the reward might be viewed as something that bring out positive behavior in the short term, it can result in more harm in the future.
It creates a sense of entitlement for children.
For example, a child should not be rewarded for not using devices during meal times. Rather they should understand the reasons for not doing that.
Disciplines that you enforce with your child should be done for long-term purposes. Rewards on the other hand are only effective in the short-term.
For example, if you reward your child for not using their phone during meal times, they will expect that with every mealtime they will get a reward. This will not instill that positive behavior you want them to grow up with.
Hence, based on the positive parenting technique using rewards will only work in the short-term and will create a sense of entitlement in children,
However, rewards can work if a child has a goal that they want to achieve. For example, if you want to encourage your child to get better grades, you can teach them about goal setting activities. By the end of the year, they can be rewarded for all their efforts.
Even though they may have not achieved the grades, if you notice genuine effort is being made then they deserve the reward as it works as a motivation to keep trying harder.
Rewards should be given carefully and with a clear purpose of rewarding the child.
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4. Focus on things you can control
The main thing to remember here is that ” I can’t control every aspect of my child’s behavior, but I can control how I respond towards them”.
Now, this is difficult to achieve because as parents we inherently believe that everything is under control.
We tend to forget that children have a mind of their own and their own preferences. More importantly, we forget that children should be given the freedom to make their own decisions.
Instead of overpowering children or bribing them to make the choices you want them to make, positive parenting solutions encourage children to look at things from the child’s perspective.
For example, if your child is misbehaving then don’t punish him for that behavior, rather look at him as a person who is not yet able to express his anger and frustrations.
Using such positive parenting techniques, you will be better prepared in dealing with difficult behaviors.
This would work on screen time management as well. If you think your child is spending too much time on their devices then don’t just yell at them. Rather take the time to understand what they are doing and suggest other screen-free activities.
One of the best ways parents can control their responses is by thinking before reacting. This would work better to encourage children to be more responsible without having to constantly nag at them when they are not listening.
Let’s take another example using screen time again.
Start by deciding what you are willing to accept, shows they can watch, games they can play and how long they can spend on their devices.
When you are feeling calm, let your child know ” I am happy for you to watch these shows for the next 30 minutes. I then expect that the TV will be switched off when the time is up. I am putting this alarm clock so you know when it is time to turn off the TV. If you do not turn it off then I will come and switch it off.”
Then ask, “Is there anything else you would like to watch in the next 30 minutes? Or is there anything else I can do to remind you to switch off the TV?”
And of course- just to make sure your child understands what you are saying you can repeat it by saying ” Just so we are on the same page, can you let me know what you have to do after your time is up.?”
By doing so, you have empowered your child, and let them know what could happen if they do not follow the instruction.
Now, this is the most difficult part which is following through. Remember the point is not to nag. If your child starts throwing tantrums, which you can expect in the first few times doing this then just do what you set out to do, which is switching off the TV.
Be firm with your decision and then remind them what you said you will do. But keep in mind when doing this to give your child options of screen-free things to do once the TV is off.
The positive parenting technique believes that parents should PREPARE their responses for difficult situations and COMMUNICATE expectations beforehand.
5. Discipline without punishment
Positive parenting solutions focus on discipline rather than punishment.
Discipline equates to training your child through a set of instructions and exercises. On the other hand, punishment means giving penalties when behavior does not match expectations.
Punishments would include blaming a child when things go wrong, shaming them for bad behavior, and other forms of physical punishment like spanking.
Punishments are a short-term strategy and do not really teach children how to behave appropriately.
Using the discipline method we empower our kids to think about the consequences of their behavior. It is a long-term strategy to help raise capable adults.
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Other positive parenting solutions :
Every child would love to be hugged, kissed, and cuddled. It gives them a sense of security and protection.
Physical contact is not just about touching your child, rather giving them the message that they have our attention and we are showing love through touch.
7 Structure & Guidance
Routines give children a sense of security and stability. It enables them to know what is expected of them and makes their environment predictable.
Recognition help reinforces positive behavior in a child. It helps a child understand that their efforts are being appreciated.
Empowering children will help them in believing in their strengths. It gives confidence in their abilities. It will also help them deal with failures positively.
The most important thing about empowerment is that children can recognize their skills and develop a growth mindset attitude.
10 Non-violent environment
It is important for a child to feel safe from harm. We cannot expect a child to grow and learn if they will feel like they are in danger. Hence, giving them a nurturing environment is crucial for their happiness.