With all the unique challenges and extremely high stakes, parenting is one of the most delicate and important balancing acts that you'll ever have to deal with. On one hand, you are fully aware of the dangers waiting out there in the world, but on the other, you understand that your child needs a dose of independence if he or she is to develop into a normally functioning adult.
Exercising the right amount of control to both prevent your child from suffering and not making him or her overly reliant on your help can be extremely difficult, but it is something that you will simply have to do if you want your child to grow up in a well-adjusted individual.
Here are some of the ways to help your child develop a healthy amount of independence:
Allowing Kids to Deal with Their own Problems
Children are used to coming to us for aid, and naturally, we are more than eager to offer that aid. However, you should be aware of the fact that helping them with each and every problem that they can encounter can sometimes do more damage than good. You should teach your child to first try and handle every problem on their own.
Coming to you for advice should always be encouraged, if nothing else, it will give you an idea of the gravity of the problem at hand and the necessity of your involvement. Children should never hide their problems, and you should learn to recognize which issues demand your attention, and which can be used as valuable lessons.
Involve Your Child in Decision Making
Whenever you get the chance, you should ask for your child's input. While they are at a younger age, this could mostly happen when inconsequential things are concerned. Offer your child a couple of choices, all of which are equally valid and let him or her make the final decision.
This boosts the child's confidence, makes them feel like their opinion is heard and allows them to practice a skill that they will sorely need once they're out on their own.
Involve a Child in an Activity
This could range from fixing leaking taps to making a treehouse together. Basically, the idea is to involve your child in an activity that poses some real challenges and problems and then to work along with your kid on overcoming those problems. While you are working on an issue, you should always encourage your kid to first come up with possible solutions on his or her own. Whenever they offer the right solutions, an insightful comment or an interesting perspective, you should acknowledge their contribution and show that you value it.
The confidence boost that comes from the knowledge that they have helped in solving a real problem, that was previously a complete conundrum for them will go a long way towards making your child a person who is well equipped for dealing with the daily challenges of adulthood.
Support Your Child's Interests
The world is full of people who are trying to live out their dreams through their children. Please, for the sake of all that is good and holly, don't be one of those people. While your child defines him or herself through you, and while this is normal to some extent, they also have to develop their own personality and their own set if interests, regardless of how those interests may seem to you.
Naturally, some things should always stay off limits, but as long as your child has a healthy interest in a harmless activity, you should do your best to support them regardless of your lack of enthusiasm for the subject. While it is great to have a child who shares your passion, it is even better to have one that is capable of finding their own path through life.
Don't Give out Empty Praise
Naturally, your child is the smartest and the most beautiful in the whole wide world, but you might refrain from constantly saying that. While a child needs a good deal of support to develop a healthy confidence, overdoing it with praise can make the kid feel like they are capable of anything, only to find out later that they excel at nothing.
Creating a fantasy world in which everything is subject to your kids whims will not do him or her any favors in the future, and it will prevent the child from developing a realistic perception of his or her qualities.
These are just some things to think about. We are confident that you are always improving and trying to do the best for your child, and that is what matters the most for them-that they know that you care for them and love them unconditionally.