Kid Whisperer Nation Tip for Parents #36
ROUGHHOUSE WITH YOUR KIDS
This may come naturally because we have evolved to do this so that we can help socialize our offspring. Grappling, wrestling, and general roughhousing helps kids learn how to act and react appropriately, regulate emotions and be part of a social hierarchy, especially when they’re two to four years old. And, it’s FUN!
Kid Whisperer Nation Tip for Parents # 37
YOUR GOOD POINT IS NOT THE POINT
Parents will have many, many occasions to be able to imbue wisdom onto their kids. After all, parents usually have fully-formed, fully functional brains, and minor children never do, by definition. Also, every parent in the history of time has been on the earth longer than their offspring, usually making them far wiser. This makes it so parents are usually full of important bits of wisdom that kids don’t have, or don’t fully grasp. We love our kids, so we often try to share that wisdom, often at the moment that kids demonstrate that they lack said wisdom.
“Nothing good is accomplished without initiative” can be the response to a teen laying around the house instead of going out and finding a job.
“Work builds character” can be the response to gripes about chores.
“Life is not fair” can be the response to complaints about experiencing the fact that life, in fact, is not fair.
These statements are all not only correct, they are profoundly correct: they are pieces of wisdom that allow human beings to thrive, and saying these things to your kids as a response to proof of their lack of understanding of these pieces of wisdom is pretty much worthless. The reason for this is that human beings of any almost never take unsolicited advice.
Don’t believe me? Do you listen when your mother-in-shares her unsolicited thoughts on how you should parent your kid?
So, instead, keep your trap shut when your kid fails, and notice when they start living by the wisdom of the world: Don’t praise. Just notice.
Your kid takes out the garbage without being asked because it was full:
“I notice you taking initiative.”
Your kid puts extra elbow grease into cleaning the grill:
“I noticed you working hard on that.”
Your kid gets fired from a job for no real reason and then gets a new job the next week:
“I noticed that you took that unfair firing like a champ and went and got a better job.”
Kid Whisperer Nation Tip for Parents # 38
SAY “I TRUST YOUR JUDGMENT”
Most parents know to encourage kids by saying “I know you can do it.” This is great. And, it is also important to tell kids that you trust their judgment: that you not only think they are capable of solving problems, but also that they are able to make good choices. Instilling this faith in your kids judgment can lead to better choices if your kid knows that their parent has faith in them to do the right thing.
Kid Whisperer Nation Tip for Parents # 39
YOU WILL HURT YOUR KIDS A LOT
We all make mistakes. Allowing certain things will hurt our kids. Not allowing certain things will hurt our kids. We may get frustrated and say things that will hurt our kids. We may have practices and habits that will hurt our kids throughout their entire childhoods. As a kid, this happened to me, and it happened to you.
Just do your best. I like to help people with this. Don’t beat yourself up. Kids are resilient. Again, just do your best.
Kid Whisperer Nation Tip for Parents #40
SHOWCASE YOUR POSITIVE INTERACTIONS WITH ADULTS
(AND HIDE THE OTHER ONES)
It’s not really that kids are usually emotionally scarred by relatively negative adult interactions (though it certainly does happen) but seeing adults acting towards each other in mean and unpleasant ways models that kind of behavior, and kids will tend to use that behavior with others.
Taking the time to make sure your kid is present to see pleasant interactions with your best friend and hiding an interaction with a family member that you think might go south is a simple way to make sure your kid uses the behaviors you want her to use.