People seem to have this misunderstanding that it takes strength and courage to be tough, rigid and strict with your kids. And that being “soft” is being understanding and patient with them.
I beg to differ.
True strength and courage is being gentle and understanding with your kids. Having compassion and empathy, encouraging and listening, not punishing and screaming. I think it’s weak parenting to choose to be “tough-love” and authoritarian, ready to spank and punish at the slightest perceived misbehavior.
What follows are 12 powerful ways to show true strength and courage as a parent.
- True strength is saying “I love you” multiple times each and every day.
- True strength is controlling your own emotions, rather than trying to control theirs.
- True strength is glowing with pride in who your children are, without care or concern about what anyone might think.
- True strength is spending one on one time with them every day, without TV, without your cell phone, or any other distractions.
- True strength is encouraging the behaviors you wish to see, rather than screaming and yelling about the behaviors you don’t wish to see.
- True strength is saying “I’m sorry” to your kids when you have made a mistake.
- True strength is not caring who is right or wrong, but only caring that your connection with them is strong.
- True strength is continually noticing their talents and abilities, rather than judging and criticising areas where you perceive incompetence.
- True strength is showing compassion and empathy.
- True strength is listening to their concerns, rather than demanding they listen to yours.
- True strength is seeing your child as an equal.
- True strength is an open heart.
Ultimately, what we parents should strive after most is developing our own strength of character. After all, how can we demand disciplined behavior and control over their emotions when we barely have control over ours?
I’ve stopped at 12 ways to show strength as a parent, knowing there are plenty more. What others ways can you suggest?