Preparing our kids for a successful future is an overwhelming responsibility, but there are basic necessities we seem to forget. Here are 4 things all kids need from us.
I remember the day I brought home my firstborn and how overwhelmed I was by the huge responsibility. I wasn’t as concerned about what I would do right, but more concerned that I would do something horribly wrong. I was so worried that I would break some parenting rule or do something that would damage my kid forever.
This fall my son begins his final year of high school, and looking back, I am happy to say that even though my husband and I made plenty of mistakes, he’s turned out to be a pretty good kid in spite of our shortcomings. We’ve tried our best to focus on the basic necessities and centered our parenting on self-sacrifice and love.
What’s your biggest concern as a parent?
Do you worry more about your child’s safety today or the choices they’ll make tomorrow?
As parents, we want to provide our children with everything they need–and more–for a healthy and happy life. And if you’re looking for a checklist of all those things you need to provide to ensure your child’s successful future, there’s a never-ending list of parental tips and advice.
But if you’re like me who finds herself overwhelmed by the massive amounts of parental information, here’s a list of the basics. At our house, we simply begin with God to remind ourselves He’s ultimately in control of our purpose as parents. Then when remind our children that God has a specific purpose for each of them, too, by trying our best to provide these 4 basic things all kids need for a great start.
4 Things All Kids Need From Us
Why are we so afraid of saying, “No” to our children?
Healthy boundaries are safety zones. They give children a sense of security and teach them responsibility and self-control.
As parents, when we define expectations and set limits for our children, we’re giving them the go ahead to become responsible citizens who will one day be able to effectively contribute within their community.
Overtime, parental limits are widened and extended. As our children grow and become more responsible, they earn new privileges until, finally, they reach adulthood where they are then capable of living on their own.
A child’s playtime is a parent’s most valuable investment. However, these days it seems we’re focused on everything else.
We spend tons of time and money on dance lessons and organized sports or private tutors and other extracurricular programs until our children have no downtime to simply play, think for themselves, and be creative.
Through play, children are able to freely explore their own interests and test their own abilities without fearing who’s watching or measuring their attempts.
Downtime requires a child’s imagination and creativity to experiment and discover life’s purpose for themselves.
Conversation binds us to others. The more we converse with one another, the stronger the relationship becomes.
Oftentimes, as parents, we talk more than we listen. It’s not really intentional. We fall into life’s busyness, take on our responsibility as the parent, and share life lessons with our children in hopes that they will avoid our mistakes and make better choices.
And let’s face it. Kids aren’t always that willing to open up and share with us, either. Many of their responses are one word replies like, “Fine,” when we ask how their day went, or sometimes just, “Yes” or “No.”
A conversation is two-sided. Kids need parents who will offer their undivided attention to listen just as often as they speak, and the patience to allow kids time to gather their thoughts and learn how to effectively voice their opinions and say what they’re trying to say.
All of us have a need for belonging.
There’s a “no place like home” perception within us that, good or bad, determines how we respond to other experiences and relate to other people.
The home we provide takes root within our children to form all other opinions about themselves, the world, and the values and principles they should follow for the rest of their lives.
As we connect with each other and share life together, we strengthen our family unit to provide love, trust, encouragement, and a safe refuge when things go wrong.
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Tammy @ creativekkids says
I think my biggest frustration is to sometimes get my daughter talking–sometimes it is great. Then other times it’s like pulling teeth. Great points!
Such a great article!
Thanks for joining the Link Up this week!
Joanne Viola says
Wonderful post filled with wise suggestions. I will share, conversation was always key to me, perhaps because I love to talk with people. I so enjoyed driving my children to & from school & to their activities as it seemed this is where the best conversations were had. I am not sure if it was the intimacy of a small enclosed space or that they were not “facing” me, but we had the deepest & most heartfelt conversations in our car. So glad to have stopped here from Titus 2 Tues. this morning. Blessings!
I totally agree! Especially with boundaries, downtime and conversation. We always have conversations with our kids, but while doing that it is important to still remember the boundaries. Sometimes the lines become blurred into we are ‘friends’…nope sorry still the parent!