Steps to Take with Your Kids1. Recognize your child's individuality. Acknowledge that each child is a unique being. It will help protect you from assuming they're an extension of you.
2. Listen to your children. Pay attention to the aspirations of your children. Their words and actions reveal their interests.
3. Encourage exploration. Childhood is a time of discovery. Share their excitement about drama club or a soccer game. Visit the library together and plan memorable vacations. Buy a family membership at your local art or natural history museum.
4. Apply pressure wisely. Excessive force can push people in the opposite direction. If your son falls behind in Algebra, talk with the teacher rather than imposing unreasonable study hours.
5. Provide positive attention. Sometimes we admire our kids for rebelling a little. Even when their pranks are amusing, reinforce values about being responsible and considerate. Create a healthy balance between discipline and praise.
6. Send clear signals. We may also feel some sadness or resentment if someone else gets something we wanted for ourselves. Maybe you looked forward to becoming a doctor, but couldn't afford the tuition. Now it's your child who graduates from medical school. Celebrate their achievements. Congratulate yourself for giving them greater opportunities.
7. Watch for signs of burnout. Spending more time with friends may leave them refreshed and rejuvenated. Alternating between different sports can prevent boredom and overuse injuries.
8. Be supportive. Be encouraging even when your kids decline to follow in your footsteps. Each individual has their own preferences. Demonstrate your enthusiasm by providing the resources they need to cultivate whatever hobbies they choose. Share their struggles and commend them on their efforts.
Focus on your own development and give your children enough room to pursue their own dreams. You'll all be rewarded with closer family connections and more fulfilling lives.
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