“All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln

There’s already a lot to cover when learning how to be the best parent you can be. But there are certain challenges a mother faces as a parent that are distinct from those of being a father. Here’s how to overcome them and raise your child/children well.

1. Be patient. Being a mother is a little challenging sometimes. But keep your cool and try to stay patient. Try this approach to other problems. Stay calm, explain the practical reasons not to do something, and then why YOU don’t want them to do something.

2. Take an interest in your child’s interests. If your son likes music buy him a guitar and watch him play. Ask questions, like what is your favorite type of music, what is your favorite song, etc. If your daughter is interested in fashion, take her out for a shopping spree. Ask her what her favorite thing about fashion is. Don’t be afraid to ask just don’t be pushy. Also when you call your child and they say,” What!” in a loud, angry like voice just say never mind and talk to them when they don’t seem so mad. Sometimes when they say what in a that kind of voice you should ask them whats wrong.

How to be a good mother.

If they say nothing that means you need to go in there to see whats wrong, but sometimes let them come to you.


3. Don’t be tight about money.
Okay, so blowing money day after day isn’t the best thing to do, but don’t automatically say no to everything your kid asks for. If you always say no and follow this with a lecture about saving money, you will be known as the “Tight Parent”, the one who never buys anything. Buy something small every now and then. Even offering to purchase some candy or chips at the store can make a difference. Every now and then buy something big that you are sure your kid wants. For example, an iPod in their favorite color, or maybe a teenager would enjoy a nice computer. And be generous at birthdays, maybe buy them something they have been hinting they want for a while. You can also take them out to a special dinner, see a movie, and choose a nice gift or receive nice gifts from parents.

4. Make sure you are an approachable person to talk to. Try your hardest to always be understanding and a good listener. Knowing that they can go to their mom for friendship advice, information on puberty, homework help, or just a hug goes a long way for kids. Not having someone they can talk to can cause kids to retire into a shell, so make sure you talk to them about how they feel regularly.

5. Be supportive, and never laugh at your kids hobbies, interests or friends. So, your daughter doesn’t want to study medicine and become a doctor? Don’t get angry, this is your child’s life and they can make some of their own decisions. Understand that it’s okay if your child thinks differently from you. Don’t get mad because they have a different opinion to you, or your son wants to become an engineer and not a doctor. Don’t laugh at them, or their friends. Who cares if you daughter listens to hip hop music and wears too much eyeliner? She’s still your daughter. And so what if your son is friends with a guy who speaks in a funny accent or who has a different skin color? You might not do what your kids do, but that is their decision, not yours. You have a big impact on their lives already-you choose what school they go to, when they eat dinner, the amount of allowance they get a week. Don’t over do it.

6. Be able to admit that something you did may have been wrong and don’t be afraid to apologize. It might be hard, but it’s better for everyone if you just admit to your mistakes and apologize. It saves everyone the trouble of being mad that you’re being stubborn and teaches your kids that it’s okay to make mistakes, as well as the importance of an apology. Simply calm yourself, evaluate the situation, determine what you did wrong and why. Then apologize and explain how or why you acted the way you did. A good way to start off may be: “I would like to apologize for how I acted earlier, and I realize that I was wrong,” then transition into the rest.

7. Respect your child’s love for the other parent. You should not be jealous of your child loving their Dad.

8. Lastly, love your children more than anything. Without loving them, it means nothing whatever you do in your life. And understand whenever you love your child or not, somehow deep in your child’s heart, they will love you forever whenever they are loved, or not.

Content Source: http://www.wikihow.com/Be-a-Good-Mother

How to Be Respected As A Father

There was a foster child, a little boy who screamed and screamed his head off daily. It was as though he had a war going on in his head each day. Each day his foster dad would say, “If you don’t scream today, I will take you and buy you ice cream”. One day was especially bad for the little boy. The father picked the child up and said, “Dry your tears and we will go out for ice cream”. The child stopped and looked the foster father right in the eyes and said “But I don’t deserve that, I didn’t stop crying”. The father said, “Just once I will do this. It is called mercy. Someday you will have an opportunity to give a break to someone who does not deserve it or has not earned it”. The child said he never forgot this lesson.

Happy Family

1. Give others a break. Cop someone a break now and then but not all the time. Rules are necessary to form a firm foundation for a child.

2. Be devoted. Love your family and serve them with all your heart and soul.

3. Have a sense of humor. A great sense of humor makes life’s situations bearable.

4. Overlook injustices. If someone mistreats you or harms you, you can choose to see it another way. Laugh it up or make jokes about it.

5. Don’t control everything. Let someone else get their way now and then. You can eat at their favorite restaurant now and then instead of always at yours.

6. Be compassionate. Be sympathetic, tenderhearted and unwilling to punish someone for faults and small infractions.

7. Use natural consequences. This process teaches a child that they are responsible for their actions. They obtain a reward for their good actions and suffer for their bad actions.

8. Don’t expect perfection. Neither you nor anyone else is perfect. Your imperfections are what make you lovable.

9. Never use control and dominance. Develop your character by exercising patience, long-suffering and tolerance for yourself and others. Your children will learn to do this as well by following your example.

10. Your children will adore you when they grow up. You will affect generations to come and you will be held in respect because of your character.

Content Source: http://wikihow.com

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Essential Steps In Solving Common Family Problems

In every family, there will be problems. No matter how positive and empathic we have been, kids will still argue and misbehave, and ask for more than they can have. The demands of our daily lives—and of theirs—will inevitably create conflict and misunderstanding.

Often, there is a recurring problem. The problem may be getting ready for school in the morning or going to sleep at night. Or doing homework, or fighting with siblings. Children may be demanding or disrespectful, or refuse to cooperate when asked. Over time, these common problems of daily living begin to erode the quality of our relationships with our children – and our own pleasure in being parents.

So often, families get stuck. Despite our best intentions, children become stubborn and defensive—and so do we. In today’s post, I will outline five essential principles that we should keep in mind in attempting to solve any challenging problem of family life.

 

Step 1: Take a Step Back

The first step in solving any recurring problem in the life of a child is to take a step back. Problems of family life are best solved – and perhaps can only be solved—proactively. When we are reacting to our children’s behavior, we will often be reacting badly. Clinicians and parent advisors of all points of view agree on this point.

Children want to solve problems, and they want to do well. Like us, however, they may become frustrated and even feel hopeless that solutions are possible. And, like us, they may just not know what to do.

Look for causes, not just symptoms. You will solve problems more successfully when you have been able to identify the daily experiences in the life of your child that are sources of painful feelings. These may be frustration in learning, or frequent criticism, or bullying, or exclusion.

Then, listen to your child’s grievance. Let him tell you what he believes is unfair in his life. Tell him what is right about what he is saying before you tell him what is wrong. You can say, for example, “I know you feel that we are always on your case about your schoolwork, and maybe we are. But we’re worried and we need to solve this problem.”

 

Step 2: Place the Problem Before Your Child

Once you have identified a recurrent problematic situation and made some effort to understand its causes, the next step is to place the problem before your child. Say, for example, “We have a problem in the morning, when it’s time to get ready, and I often end up yelling at you,” or “I think we have a shower problem,” or “A lot of times, we have a problem when I tell you that it is time to turn off the television.”

 

Step 3: Elicit Your Child’s Ideas

It seems almost reflexive for many parents, when faced with a child’s defiance or lack of cooperation, to attempt to solve this problem by imposing a “consequence” for their child’s misbehavior. Although some problems may require this approach, I recommend that you first engage your child in an effort to solve the problem—to elicit her ideas.

In this way, you will often be able to engage her in a search for solutions. She will then be less absorbed in angry and defiant thoughts, less stuck in making demands or continuing the argument. She will begin to think, even if just for that moment, less about getting her way and instead about how to solve a problem, how her needs and the needs of others might be reconciled – an important life lesson, for sure.

Once you have placed the problem before your child and asked for her ideas, give her some time. You can say, for example, “Why don’t you think about it for a while? Let’s talk again later, or tomorrow, and see what your ideas are.” In doing this, you will be teaching yet another important lesson, because this is how most problems in life should be solved.

 

Step 4: Develop a Plan

In my experience, almost all children respond positively when I tell a family that “I have a plan” to solve a recurrent problem of family life. They may be skeptical, but they listen with interest. Deep down, they want a plan, as much as we do. (I will offer plans for solving specific family problems in future posts.)

 

Step 5: Express Appreciation and Praise for Increments of Effort and Success

Be sure to offer praise and appreciation for every increment of your child’s effort at compliance and self-control. Your acknowledgment of her effort and progress is a basic principle of successful problem solving.

Psychologists have learned from psychotherapy research that ongoing collaboration is an important element of successful therapy. This is also true in solving problems with our children. We should regularly, proactively, check in with children, and ask, for example, “How do you think we are doing with our morning problem?”

 

Copyright Ken Barish, Ph.D.

Ken Barish is the author of Pride and Joy: A Guide to Understanding Your Child’s Emotions and Solving Family Problems.

Image: http://success.com

Taking the stress out of family get together

“My stomach is churning,” said Jennifer. “I know I should be grateful that Mom and Aunt Helen are coming for our family get-together dinner but I’m more anxious than thankful.” She pointed to a family portrait on the dining room wall. “Tom and Mom have never liked one another and Aunt Helen claims she can’t stand being in the same room with Tom’s dad, Bill.” Jennifer sat down and propped her elbows on the kitchen table. She looked at her friend Betty, hoping for a sympathetic response.

Betty let out a long breath. “I know what you’re talking about. I have a similar situation with my sister. Nancy lives alone and likes to do things her way. She can’t seem to go with the flow when we’re all together. I feel obligated to include her for our family get-togethers but I’m not happy about it.”

Harnessing Your Emotions 
If this scenario sounds familiar, you may be feeling similar emotions — fear, anxiety, even dread — about getting together with some of your family members. I experience the same with one branch of our family tree. We have repeatedly invested our time, money, labor and love into the life of this family and have been frustrated by the lack of response of any kind.

I’ve learnt to raise my “compassion quotient,” remembering that I don’t have all the facts about other people. I don’t know their challenges or fears, their concerns and worries, their likes and dislikes. And I must also accept the possibility that these people simply may not want to be with me! When that appears to be true, then I am being disrespectful if I keep pushing for time together. On the other hand, such individuals may feel insecure. If I sense that, I can try to identify what small gesture I can make to help them feel welcome and comfortable. With these examples in mind, how can you make family get-togethers less stressful? Here are some ideas to consider and practice:

Give the Other Person the Benefit of the Doubt and express love and courtesy regardless of how you are treated. The old cliché, “kill them with kindness” holds true. Smile, nod, acknowledge what’s said and show interest.

Choose Joy Despite the Circumstances. The event will be over in a few hours or days and you can then resume your life. Don’t allow anyone to steal your good will and well-being. If difficult people are in your home for an extended period, give yourself some time off. Grocery shop alone, get up early and take a walk, excuse yourself for an afternoon nap. If you work, you have those hours away from home and the stress.

Ask Questions. People love to talk about themselves. Find a point of interest and explore it with one or two individuals. This is a good way to learn more about other people and to distract them from disrupting the get-together with hurtful or difficult behavior.

Provide Opportunities for Your Guests to Participate according to their skill and interest — setting the table, leading a game, reading a story, clearing the dishes and so on. People like to be useful. When they are involved, they are less likely to grab the spotlight. One woman learned that her mother-in-law, who is most comfortable in the kitchen, creates less havoc when she has a job to do. For years now, the older woman has been in charge of whipping the potatoes, tossing a fruit salad and setting out the cakes and cookies at family celebrations. The grandchildren tell her, “We can’t wait to eat your whipped potatoes. They’re the best.” The stress when Grandma’s around has nearly disappeared, now that she feels useful.

Limit the Amount of Time You’re Together and stick to it. Set a time frame, whether the gathering is at your house or you’re the guest in someone else’s home. When you reach that point, excuse yourself gracefully. You have the right to come and go as you please. Others have the same right too.

Keep a Sense of Humor. Laughter is a great antidote to stress. If someone criticizes you about something you say or do, take a breath and respond in a playful way. “Thank you, I’ll keep that in mind for next time.” “I wish I had your leadership skills.” “You sound as if you have some great ideas.” Such statements acknowledge the other person, while retaining your sense of self.

Remind yourself that each of us is unique, no matter how difficult we may seem to one another. Extend some love, kindness and charity to those who annoy and frustrate us even as you would like the same treatment from others. And perhaps one day we will even grow to love them as we hope they will one day love us.

Source: http://www.family.org.sg/