As a parent, it is important that you learn how to understand your child. This helps you guide and nurture your child as they grow and mature because each child is different and has a unique personality trait which stays with them throughout life. Parents have an important role in how a child psychologically develops and so their ability to correctly interpret their child’s abilities and skills are significant in avoiding poor parental decisions.
Parenting is more than just providing comforts for your children. It is being there for the child emotionally, and providing them a sense of security. Below are a few basic tips that will help you understand children better:
Observation is one of the simplest, but very effective way to study your child. As a parent you should observe their actions, expressions, and temperament when they play, eat and sleep. It is important to show interest in what your child is doing or saying while also avoiding comparing your child with others as it may make the child feel inferior.
Spending quality time:
Today’s world, almost every parent is busy with work and at home, doing more than one thing at a time which is called multitasking. Multitasking, although it helps get things done faster, is cutting short the time parents spend with their children. Parents need to make time to have lengthy conversations which their child to know what is going on in their lives. Aside talking, quality time can be spent observing them to know more and more about their personalities.
Children deserve your undivided attention and that means the time you are spending with your child must be dedicated to your child alone. If you are talking to your child while you are doing something else, it is most likely you would miss important insights your child may give you about him/herself. This also makes your child feel safe and validated and this causes them to open up more.
Pay attention to your child’s environment:
It is believed that behaviors and attitudes are shaped largely by the environment a child is brought up in. Your child’s behavior is largely dependent on the kind of people he is surrounded by and how they interact with him. Research also shows that the environment can affect the child’s brain development which influences his language and cognitive skills.
Understand how a child’s brain functions:
The brain is shaped by experiences a child has and this will influence how he responds to different situations. Understanding how your child’s brain functions can help you learn about his/her behavior, decision making, social, logical and cognitive abilities. This also helps you turn negative experiences into positive ones.
Aside talking, listening is important when you are having conversations with your child. Children may not be able to express themselves clearly so you should pay attention to their non-verbal cues as well. You should focus on their tone, expression and body language. In all this, make sure your child knows he or she is being heard.
Ask the right questions:
Asking the right questions will cause a child to speak. When initiating a conversation, ask open-ended questions. For example, instead of asking “Do you like this shirt or a song?” which warrants a yes or no answer, you should ask your child what he or she thinks about it and this will let them say more.
Children express themselves in different ways:
Apart from talking, children express their feelings through activities. If your child loves to sing, draw, act or write, encourage them to do more of it. Get them classes that will help nurture their gifts and talents.
Empathy is an important quality you must have as a parent to understand your child. You should try and step into your child’s shoes and think like them, asking yourself what you would do in a certain situation if you were them.
Knowing your Child’s Emotional Quotient:
Emotional quotient or intelligence is a person’s ability to identify, express and control their emotions. Every child is born with a unique temperament; some may be outspoken and others may be shy. As a parent, understanding this is important as it helps you do what is needed to help them grow into healthy, emotionally intelligent adults.