Many parents are confused by their child’s behavior, especially if it’s repeated over and over. You can tell them not to do something a hundred times over, and they will still attempt whatever it is you asked them not to. No matter how many times you tell them it’s wrong, a child may repeatedly hit their sibling, for example. Parents find themselves asking their child why? Why do you keep doing what I’ve asked you not to do? The truth is, your child doesn’t know, but science does. Our brains aren’t fully developed until we are in our twenties, and there are stages along the way that dictate what our brains can and cannot comprehend. This science is what drives positive parenting.
Positive parenting can’t be defined by a specific set of rules or guidelines. It’s more of a belief, and a way of living that demonstrates your respect for children. It’s a belief that children deserve that respect, and need to be raised with nurturing and love in an environment free from fear of shame or punishment. Positive parenting is gentle guidance that teaches children right from wrong without being punitive and steers them on the path to becoming well rounded, respectful citizens.
Benefits of Positive Parenting
We all are very much aware of the adverse effects corporal punishment, such as spanking, has on a child, and more and more parents are moving away from the once popular use of time out. A key aspect of positive parenting is catching your child doing something right rather than focusing on everything they do wrong. Every child will misbehave, no matter how well they are raised and no matter how much love they receive. Focusing on the positive things your child does gives them more self-confidence and reinforces that they are inherently good. A child constantly criticized for misbehavior learns that they are not worthy of love and that they are bad.
There are proven benefits to positive parenting, both for your child and for you. Not only does focusing on the positive aid optimal brain development, it also maximizes the development of cognitive functions. Also, when a child receives love and compassion, he or she learns how to reciprocate with love and compassion towards their parents and others. By engaging in positive parenting, you will raise a responsible and concerned child who can show more empathy for others. Finally, and maybe most importantly, with positive parenting your child has an increased chance of developing into a more productive and successful member of the society in their academic and professional life.
How to Learn About Positive Parenting
There is a lot of information online about positive parenting, from blogs to classes to videos. Online videos are a great way of learning about positive parenting because it brings the classroom into your home. By utilizing videos, both you and your partner can watch at the same time and discuss methods, so you are both on the same page in your parenting style. When looking for information sources, be sure to filter where you place your focus. While a mommy blogger is probably very well intended, it doesn’t mean that she’s an expert on positive parenting. Conflicting information is out there. Be sure your information is coming from a reputable source that you can trust. If you don’t know who or what you can trust, do your research—your children are worth the extra time it will take.