It is my goal in life to assure my children of an amazing future that holds all that they want it to be. Over the last 19 years I have learned a few things that I would think all mothers would want to know.
1. Always allow them to speak their mind. When you don’t allow freedom of speech and thought then they begin to close the lines of communication. Even when they are screaming let them get it out. Keep your voice calm and they will tend to mirror this. It keeps them talking and expressing themselves in an appropriate manner.
2. By allowing them to speak their mind and keeping these communication lines open you have to learn another skill. The poker face! No matter what comes out of their mouths don’t let the shock and awe come out in your expression.
3. Encourage them to make decisions and let them be known. Even if it is as simple as choosing from the menu and ordering for themselves at a restaurant. The more comfortable they are saying what they want the better.
4. Don’t let them quit stuff! They need to see things through to the finish line. If they choose to start a project, a class, or even a drawing and half way through they want to quit you encourage them to finish it. Once it is complete praise them on a job well done and that you are proud of them for finishing!
5. Let them struggle with problems! Don’t be the problem solver let them figure it out. Even if they end up in tears. Struggle is good…it encourages them to solve their problems on their own and not to run to someone else to figure out everything.
6. Let them argue! Arguing is good. It is communicating. It doesn’t matter if it is with you, their siblings, or even the dog. It allows them to convey the reasons they think they are right. Surprisingly, this lets you learn where your little one is coming from and what their though process is. It is quite insightful if you listen to your daughter. Another thing….they don’t always need to be right. You get your turn in the argument as well. Remind them that you allowed them to speak and now it is your turn to explain why or why not they will when the argument.
7. Let them lose. It is important in life to learn that everything doesn’t always end the way you want it too. Console them and encourage them but also let them know that this is the way life goes sometimes.
So there you have it. These are my strategies. So far, I have incredible daughters that are unafraid to face the world. I cannot imagine the things they will accomplish!!