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8 Precious Truths All Parents Should Pass To Their Children

8 Precious Truths All Parents Should Pass To Their Children

The influence we have over our children can have a far bigger impact than we think. That is why the way we speak, act and the wisdom we pass on to them will imprint onto their lives in far greater ways than we can imagine. We have so much power to enrich their lives with the positive things we’ve learnt from our own lives and to allow these timeless truths to transcend into their future.

Successful parenting isn’t all about helping your child to be the best academically or ridding them of all their adversities, it’s about playing a crucial role in the personal growth by means of gentle direction no matter where their life may take them. It’s providing them with wisdom that they can apply to all areas of their life and give them a positive basis for life decisions and outlooks.

1. Your Perception Of The World Is What You Make It

How we see the world is all made up of what we’ve been told and exposed to from a very early age. As we get older these beliefs shape the way we see ourselves and the world around us. It’s sad that if we’ve been brought up in a negative environment, then we are more likely to grow up with similar fears, negative feelings and emotions as that is how we’ve been taught to see the world.

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As a parent, it’s so important to not only bring up a child in a positive and loving environment, but to not teach them your own limiting beliefs and negative perceptions. Realise that the things you fear will be picked up by your children and passed on creating their own perceptions through yours. By recognising these you can readjust what you teach to your child and choose to allow their minds to be open and curious to let them gain their own conclusions of the world.

2. Pain Is An Essential Part Of Life

Our natural instinct is to shield and protect our children from pain but by doing this we don’t teach them that pain is inevitable in life. By protecting them we are denying them the chance to process and deal with painful situations from a young age when they are learning how to deal with different emotions.

If painful situations arise such as the death of a family member, a pet or an argument with a friend at school, it’s important to teach them that pain helps you to grow – we need to embrace the hard times in our life to deal with it in a way that allows us to learn and move on. Be a constant reassurance that everything happens for a reason and for a higher good.

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3. Find Your Own Path In Life

It’s easy to pass on our beliefs to others – it’s hard not to. However, be aware that what you think may not be what other’s think – when a child asks a question it’s important not to immediately answer with your own thoughts and ideas. Instead, make sure you keep the question open and ask the child what they think. You want your child to be their own person and form their own opinions and beliefs based on their knowledge of the world. Remember they are a unique person outside of you and what resonates with you may not resonate with them. Encourage them to question things and not take what they hear as the truth.

4. Live In The Present Moment

Life is full of many distractions and especially with today’s technology. That’s why it’s important to allow children to be aware of the present moment. Happiness can’t be found in the past or the future but in the here and now – the more we connect with the moment we’re living in now, the more we connect with our higher being and create appreciation and calmness. Mediation is a wonderful way to teach this but the act of being mindful of the things we do will help cultivate a more positive mind.

5. Everything Is Temporary

With that in mind, it’s important to know everything in this world is temporary. Holding on the past only sits inside of us and cultivates if we don’t let it go. Life is full of ups and downs – living with these and going with the flow will mean a much less bumpy journey through life. We are able to adapt more easily to change and resist living in the past.

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6. Take Responsibility For Your Own Happiness

The first few years of life can be like living in a bubble where you learn to connect with the things around you and understand your place in the world. This time is usually a period where a child is innocently very self-centred because there is so much attention put upon them. It’s only when they start school and realise they aren’t the only one getting attention. This is when blame towards others can be cultivated because they struggle to find their place, to be heard by others and feel things are other people’s fault.

Teaching a child that they, and only they, are responsible for their own happiness is so important – it will stop the victim-mentality they can easily pick up (and what many of us as adults have done) and stop them from pushing the responsibility of their happiness onto things outside of themselves.

7. Fear Is An Illusion

People may want to fight against this one because we are so hellbent on holding on to the fears we have cultivated over the years. But in truth, fears are not real. Fear is just an emotion that comes from a preformed idea or belief  – fear is just an illusion. Unfortunately, there are many dangers in the world but the fear we generate around them is not directly proportionate to the dangers themselves. Danger does not have to equal fear but this is what children pick up on. Fearful thoughts attract fearful situations so it’s important to learn about danger and be aware but not to fear it.

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8. Your Only Limitation Is Your Mind

We often say ‘the sky is the limit’ which implies that somewhere up there, a limit exists. Everyday we impose limitations on ourselves through false negative beliefs, ideas, and thoughts of self-worth. However, we are only limited by our thinking and what we think is true or false – learning to acknowledge that our limiting beliefs aren’t true is an important lesson to pass on to our children. Instilling this at a young age will allow a child to believe they can accomplish anything and reduce the amount of limited thinking in the first place.

The way in which we teach our children the ways of the world is paramount to creating a happy, well-rounded child. Successful parenting means giving children the best possible start in life by cultivating a positive mind and a real awareness of the world they live in. We are all growing and learning as we walk through life so, in turn, remember never to dismiss what our children can teach us in return!

Featured photo credit: Josh Willink via pexels.com

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Jenny Marchal

A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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Last Updated on August 22, 2019

14 Helpful Tips for Single Parents: How to Stay Sane While Doing it All

14 Helpful Tips for Single Parents: How to Stay Sane While Doing it All

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, over 27% of children under the age of 18 are living with a single parent.[1] That’s over 1/4th of the U.S. population.There is a common misconception that children who grow up in single parent homes are not as successful as children living in two-parent homes.

One crucial detail that was often left out of studies when comparing single and two-parent homes was the stability of the household. There is a correlation between family structure and family stability, but this study shows that children who grow up in stable single-parent homes do as well as those in married households in terms of academic abilities and behavior.

But providing stability is easier said than done. With only one adult to act as a parent, some tasks are inherently more challenging. However, there are a few helpful things you can do to make the parenting journey a little easier for yourself and stay sane while doing it.

1. Don’t Neglect Self-Care

Before anything else can be done, you must be caring for your own needs adequately. Only when you are feeling well-rested and healthy can you be at your best for your children.

Many parents tend to put their kids’ needs first and their owns last, but that will result in a never-ending cycle of exhaustion and feelings of inadequacy. Make time to eat regularly and healthfully, get plenty of rest, and squeeze in exercise whenever you can. Even a short walk around the neighborhood will help your body get much-needed movement and fresh air.

Your children depend on you, and it’s up to you to make sure that you are well-equipped and ready to take on that responsibility.

2. Join Forces with Other Single Parents

At times, it may seem like you’re the only person who knows what it’s like to be a single parent. However, the statistics say that there are many others who know exactly what you’re going through.

Find single parents locally, through your kid’s school, extracurricular activities, or even an app. There are also numerous online communities that can offer support and advice, through Facebook or sites like Single Mom Nation.

Although single moms make up the majority of single parents, there are more than 2.6 million single dads in the U.S. A great way to connect is through Meetup. Other single parents will more than happy to arrange babysitting swaps, playdates, and carpools.

Join forces in order to form mutually beneficial relationships.

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3. Build a Community

In addition to finding support with other single parents, also build a community comprised of families of all different types. Rather than focus solely on the single parent aspect of your identity, look for parents and kids who share other things in common.

Join a playgroup, get plugged in at a church, or get to know the parents of the kids involved in the same extracurricular activities. Having a community of a variety of people and families will bring diversity and excitement into your and your kids’ lives.

4. Accept Help

Don’t try to be a superhero and do it all yourself. There are probably people in your life who care about you and your kids and want to help you. Let them know what types of things would be most appreciated, whether it’s bringing meals once a week, helping with rides to school, or giving you time to yourself.

There is no shame in asking for help and accepting assistance from loved ones. You will not be perceived as weak or incompetent. You are being a good parent by being resourceful and allowing others to give you a much-needed break.

5. Get Creative with Childcare

Raising a child on a single income is a challenge, with the high cost of daycares, nannies, and other conventional childcare services. More affordable options are possible if you go a less traditional route.

If you have space and live in a college town, offer a college student housing in exchange for regular childcare. Or swap kids with other single parents so that your kids have friends to play with while the parents get time to themselves.

When I was younger, my parents had a group of five family friends, and all of the children would rotate to a different house each day of the week, during the summer months. The kids would have a great time playing with each other, and the parents’ job becomes a lot easier. That’s what you would call a win-win situation.

6. Plan Ahead for Emergencies

As a single parent, a backup plan or two is a must in emergency situations. Make a list of people you know you can call in a moment’s notice. There will be times in which you need help, and it’s important to know ahead of time who you can rely on.

Look into whether or not your area offers emergency babysitting services or a drop-in daycare. Knowing who will be able to care for your child in the event of an emergency can relieve one potential source of anxiety in stressful situations.

7. Create a Routine

Routines are crucial for young children because knowing what to expect gives them a semblance of control. This is even more important when in a single parent home.

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If the child travels between homes or has multiple caretakers, life can seem extremely chaotic and unpredictable. Establish a routine and schedule for your child as much as possible. This can include bedtime, before/after school, chores, meal times, and even a weekend routine.

Having a routine does not mean things cannot change. It is merely a default schedule to fall back on when no additional events or activities are going on. When your children know what to expect, they will be less resistant because they know what to expect, and days will run much more smoothly.

8. Be Consistent with Rules and Discipline

If your child has multiple caretakers, such as another parent, grandparent, or babysitter, communicate clearly on how discipline will be handled. Talk to your ex, if you are sharing custody, as well as any other caretakers about the rules and the agreed-upon approach to discipline.

When a child realizes that certain rules can be bent with certain people, he/she will use it to their advantage, causing additional issues with limits, behavior, and discipline down the road.

This article may help you to discipline your child better:

How to Discipline a Child (The Complete Guide for Different Ages)

9. Stay Positive

Everyone has heard the saying, “Mind over matter.” But there really is so much power behind your mentality. It can change your perspective and make a difficult situation so much better.

Your kids will be able to detect even the smallest shift in your attitude. When the responsibilities of motherhood are overwhelming, stay focused on the positive things in your life, such as your friends and family. This will produce a much more stable home environment.

Maintain your sense of humor and don’t be afraid to be silly. Look towards the future and the great things that are still to come for you and your family. Rediscover and redefine your family values.

10. Move Past the Guilt

In a single parent home, it is impossible to act as both parents, regardless of how hard you try. Let go of the things that you cannot do as a single parent, and instead, think of the great things you ARE able to provide for your children.

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Leave behind the notion that life would be easier or better with two parents. This is simply not true. There is a multitude of pros and cons to all family dynamics, and the one you are providing for your kids now is the one that they need.

Don’t get bogged down by guilt or regret. Take control of your life and be the best parent you can by being present and engaged with them on a daily basis.

11. Answer Questions Honestly

Your kids may have questions about why their home situation is different from many of their friends. When asked, don’t sugarcoat the situation or give them an answer that is not accurate.

Depending on their age, take this opportunity to explain the truth of what happened and how the current circumstances came about. Not all families have two parents, whether that is due to divorce, death, or whatever else life brings.

Don’t give more detail than necessary or talk badly about the other parent. But strive to be truthful and honest. Your children will benefit more from your candor than a made-up story.

12. Treat Kids Like Kids

In the absence of a partner, it can be tempting to rely on your children for comfort, companionship, or sympathy. But your kids are not equipped to play this role for you.

There are many details within an adult relationship that children are not able to understand or process, and it will only cause confusion and resentment.

Do not take out your anger on your kids. Separate your emotional needs from your role as a mother. If you find yourself depending on your kids too much, look for adult friends or family members that you can talk to about your issues.

13. Find Role Models

Find positive role models of the opposite sex for your child. It’s crucial that your child does not form negative associations with an entire gender of people.

Find close friends or family members that would be willing to spend one-on-one time with your kids. Encourage them to form meaningful relationships with people that you trust and that they can look up to.

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Role models can make a huge difference in the path that a child decides to take, so be intentional about the ones that you put in your kids’ lives.

14. Be Affectionate and Give Praise

Your children need your affection and praise on a daily basis. Engage with your kids as often as possible by playing with them, going on outings, and encouraging open dialogue.

Affirm them in the things that they are doing well, no matter how small. Praise their efforts, rather than their achievements. This will inspire them to continue to put forth hard work and not give up when success is not achieved.

Rather than spending money on gifts, spend time and effort in making lasting memories.

Final Thoughts

Being a single parent is a challenging responsibility to take on. Without the help of a partner to fall back on, single parents have a lot more to take on.

However, studies show that growing up in a single parent home does not have a negative effect on achievement in school. As long as the family is a stable and safe environment, kids are able to excel and do well in life.

Use these tips in order to be a reliable and capable parent for your kids, while maintaining your own well-being and sanity.

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Featured photo credit: Eye for Ebony via unsplash.com

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