Aristotle famously said, “give me a child until he is 7 and I will show you the man”. The fact is, the way we parent at when our children are young, has a profound impact on the rate and way your child grows.
The right parental behaviour can nurture and encourage the development of leadership, kindness, intrigue, and patience. On the other hand, crippling parenting behaviours can stump your child’s emotional development and bring out unwanted characteristics in later life.
These are the six crippling behaviours that come from a loving place, but in reality, prevent children from growing.
Not Letting Children Experience Risk
We all want to protect our children from the dangers of the world. But our obsession with keeping our children safe can actually be preventing them from developing coping mechanisms necessary for later life.
European psychologists have concluded that children who don’t experience bumps and scrapes at a young age are more likely to develop phobias, arrogant personality traits, and low self-esteem.
Being Too Quick to Praise
Children need to receive praise, however, parents that lavish praise on their child for every little thing are actually doing their son or daughter a disservice. By raving about minor achievements, it detracts from the praise dished out for major accomplishments.
Keeping praise in perspective and only dishing it out when it is warranted will allow you to give the big moments the attention and praise they deserve.
Using Isolation as a Punishment
Shutting a child in their room or giving them the silent treatment are not effective punishments for children acting out. A comprehensive study carried out on children in juvenile detention facilities found that when children are acting up, they need more attention, not less.
Particularly as they get older, instead of isolating them for bad behaviour, have a conversation and encourage them to express their feelings. Only then can you get to the root cause of the bad behaviour and eventually solve it.
Spoiling our Children
Children need to learn to deal with disappointment. It is difficult to see your child disappointed as a parent, but they will get over it. As a parent, your job is to prepare them for the world. Spoiling them only sets them up for failure. It is far easier to get over disappointment at a young age than when they are young adults and they experience it for the first time.
One way of managing disappointment is at Christmas. Instead of getting your child every single toy they ask Santa for find some other appealing gifts they will enjoy but might not be exactly what they asked for. For great infant gift ideas, check out these reviews.
Basing Success on Material Rewards
When your child does well at school, it can be tempting to reward them with a shopping spree at their favourite toy shop or an increase in their allowance, but this sends a strong message about our own actions and material rewards. Your child must learn to find intrinsic motivation for their actions.
Not Practicing What You Preach
We have to lead by example. A child is far more likely to adopt the traits you display than those you verbally communicate. If you want your child to be honest, don’t lie to them. If you want them to work hard and have integrity, don’t cut corners in your own life. If you want them to be kind and selfless to others, consider engaging in voluntary work yourself.