The KEY To Effective ParentingSep 25, 2023
As a parent, when your kids are whining, fighting, or not listening — do you find yourself ending up irritated, frustrated, or even angry? Let’s face it, our kids can be very frustrating at times, and they can bring out the worst in us.
Unfortunately, the more annoyed and frustrated we get at our kids, the less effective we become as a parent. When I ask parents how they respond when they’re frustrated, here is what most tell me:
- They are short-tempered.
- They often yell or snap.
- They use a “command and demand” parenting style.
- They’re not patient, calm, kind, or effective.
There is a direct correlation between your frustration level and your effectiveness as a parent because responding from frustration more often than not just adds fuel to the situation and rarely gets the desired response from your child.
Most parents come to me wanting to know how to change their child’s behavior. They want to know how to get their kids to stop whining, fighting, and start listening better. They think the key to not getting frustrated and more effective parenting is to get their kids to change their behavior.
Although that may seem like a logical solution, it rarely works. Our kids may comply until that one time when you're in front of the grandparents or with another family, and then you're stuck.
We are never going to be able to control everything our child does or says — we can only control how WE respond. The key to remaining effective as a parent is to manage our own emotions so we respond instead of react.
Please note, I do realize that it can be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to remain calm, cool and collected as your child pushes all of your buttons. Perfect parenting is not a realistic goal, nor should it be because your kids need to see you make mistakes too.
That said, I invite parents to consider that there is a space between remaining calm, cool, and collected, and completely losing it. I call it the land of neutral — and I developed my Parent From Neutral concept and tools to help parents remain effective during the times that they need to most. When you stay neutral, you stay in a place where you can access your parenting toolbox to effectively deal with the situation at hand.
Our kids learn from watching us, and we set an example and teach them every time we manage our own emotions and frustration. Once I started consistently better managing myself, the energy changed in our house — so much so that my daughter commented that things were different at home. When I asked what had changed, she responded “You did”.
I can tell you from my own personal experience, as well as the experiences of the countless parents I’ve worked with, that learning to manage your own emotions and remain neutral so you respond instead of react is a game changer as a parent.
If your feelings and emotions are impacting your life and your parenting and keeping you from parenting effectively, please join us in Boxford on October 19th for my workshop on Managing BIG Feelings — Both Yours and Your Child’s. I’ll be sharing how to take frustration and stress out of your parenting process so you can be more effective and teach these tools to your kids. This workshop is sponsored by the Tri-Town Council and is free and open to the public. You can learn more and sign up here.
Join the Confident Parenting Community.
Receive the latest tips and tools from the Confident Parenting Toolbox to support your kids
(and yourself!) with today's challenges so your whole family can thrive.
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.