Positive parenting (also called Positive Guidance or Positive Discipline) is a parenting method and a belief that kids should be raised through positive and loving encouragement,resisting all temptations to be punitive or to punish kids with fear, shame, any form of violence etc.
Does Positive Parenting work?
Yes. Studies suggest that strict child rearing practices, which include physical punishment, spanking and controlling behavior with fear, result in children being more aggressive, antisocial, depressive and unhappy. Most teens who exhibit risky behavior (gangs, drugs, alcohol, criminal records, teen pregnancy) are brought up in families with strict discipline, physical punishment, aggression, psychological humiliation, shame etc.
On the other hand, research on the effects of Positive Parenting shows that a loving and supportive approach in disciplining kids is very effective in creating considerate, responsible and generally happier children.
The growing movement of Positive Guidance seems to be an innovative solution for various problems of modern society. Positive Discipline creates happier family relationships and betters society with a positive transformation in the way we raise our kids – a new generation of happier people.
Why Positive Parenting is the best way to raise great kids
When we teach our kids to be afraid of us, we are raising angry kids who will eventually lose desire to please their parents and do what they’re told. They find ways around strict rules by lying, hiding things and manipulating people around them.
However, Positive Parenting is not to be confused with permissive parenting. When parents are too permissive towards their kids it creates confused, frustrated and unhappy children. Kids need parental guidance. If they don’t get it they will start testing, disrespecting and rebelling against parents and caretakers.
Positive Discipline is a way to raise kids who do not feel discouraged or powerless, who want to behave, not because they’re forced to, but because they know self-discipline. Kids who are aware why they shouldn’t practice undesirable behaviors will enjoy more success with personal and professional achievements and grow up to be happy human beings.
How to do Positive Guidance
Positive Parenting is more a way of life than a simple textbook. Here are few guidelines:
– Reaffirm your connection with kids. Good parent-child bonds are an absolute priority. Kids misbehave when they feel helpless, bad about themselves, disconnected from others etc. If they feel loved, safe, accepted and protected, they are less likely to exhibit bad behavior.
– Improve your own set of values. Be a better person, think loving guidance instead of being angry at your child for misbehaving. Through empathy, set the necessary limits that will help a child to focus on becoming better.
– Avoid power struggle. The key is not to make kids do what you want, but make them want to do it. Kids will want to follow your direction if you strengthen your relationship with them through support, gentle guidance, love and empathy. Punishment will only damage your relationship further and create more misbehavior.
– Learn to say “Yes!”. This is a smart psychological trick to say what you want, but without the use of words like “No”, “You can’t”, “We won’t” etc. Restrictions create negative feelings, so instead use positive encouragement. EX: “Yes, it’s time to do your chores”, “Yes I will help you and yes we will play together after that”, “Yes, I’m so lucky to be your parent”.
Treat kids as you want them to treat themselves
This is the best guidance in Positive Parenting. Every time you feel too tired, stressed or exhausted, think of this: the way you treat your kids is the way they’ll treat themselves throughout life.
Love them, support them and teach your kids how to be their own best friends!