Like many parents you’re passionate about finding the best ways to interact with your children. You’ve done your research, taken advice, and put your parental instinct into action to create a strong bond, to support positive behaviour and react to any issues your child experiences. Finding your parenting techniques take time and patience, growing and evolving into your very own just as your children do. As dynamic parents, you understand there is always room for improvement and you may be wondering if it’s too late to change the parenting techniques you’ve been using on your children. You might be wondering even if you did change the parenting techniques now, would it actually work if you did? With a few changes and addition of certain discipline strategies, you can adjust the way you parent, and your child’s behaviour has a much better chance of improving. So if you’re interested in changing your parenting techniques, you can start by taking a look at other parenting styles to incorporate different strategies into your own. If you’re looking to take that education even further, mark your calendars for our upcoming Parenting Seminar on January 28th!
1. The Positive Parenting Techniques Style
As a newbie to the many parenting techniques out there, positive parenting is a movement that’s meeting many families far and wide. Sometimes it’s called positive discipline, or gentle, loving guidance; it’s one of the parenting techniques that resist the temptation to push consequences. Many research studies have reflected that positive parenting techniques help kids learn and understand the values of consideration, responsibility as well as making them (and their parents!) significantly happier. Positive parenting techniques focused around happiness, fulfillment and meaningfulness have a plethora of benefits for both parent and child, as well as the bond between and the healthy development it encourages. So how do you adapt these positive parenting techniques into your lifestyle?
While positive parenting techniques take the willingness to change your thinking, teaching rather than punishing your children, and along the lines of positive psychology, positive parenting techniques are focused on empowering the children with unconditional support. This support is intended to spark their self esteem and self confidence, to get them used to the idea of getting the most out of themselves and their lives. Research shows that children give more of the behaviour that goes noticed – so if you’re giving most attention to the naughty behaviours rather than the desired ones, switch it around. Give specific feedback on exactly the behaviours you like to see from your child, and don’t be discreet; label your praise to get more of that behaviour!
It can be difficult, but positive parenting techniques are adapted by setting aside our own personal opinions and interests and letting our children find and celebrate their own, furthermore reaching self-actualization. Focus on supporting their interests to help them find their own unique way rather than teaching them your own. When it comes to setting rules, positive parenting techniques focus more on guidance and therapeutic coaching than punishment to support and guide children towards the necessary choice making skills – without consequences. Similarly to monkey see monkey do, model your child’s behaviour to teach them the lessons you want them to learn (not interrupting when they speak, speaking softly, using manners, etc). Connect with them by teaching them the valuable lessons they learn modeled after your own behaviour.
2. The Unconditional Parenting Techniques Style
According to Author Alfie Kohn, the unconditional parenting techniques style is formed around treating children with unconditional positive regard; no matter how they behave or what they say or do, they will feel valued. By accepting your child regardless of their actions, whether you approve or disapprove, it’s believed that your child can focus on reaching unhindered, full self-actualization through praise. Those who follow these particular parenting techniques are focused on an overarching concept that strays from children being praised for accepted behaviour, to which the child may equate their actions with their self worth. Rather, these principles encourage the child to stray from being “good” for the approval they would receive. The unconditional parenting technique encourages and motivates children to be good because they believe it’s good from within, and it feels good. So what are the characteristics of the unconditional parenting techniques?
Have you ever heard of the weapons of love? You probably haven’t ever heard of it that way, but those following the unconditional parenting techniques take the unconditional positive regard seriously, in a way that many parents might consider provocative parental control. On a rather extreme scale, weapons of love are disguised as punishments and praise that are used to control children; if you behave well, I’ll love you, if you behave poorly, I will not show you love. Rather than using punishment and praise as tools to manipulate children into working for affection and conditional love, children should be loved for who they are rather than what it is they do. These unconditional parenting techniques strongly suggest that parents show love independently so that children are encouraged to find themselves rather than changing themselves into being loved admired and accepted.
3. Authoritative Parenting Techniques Style
As one of the most traditional of parenting techniques and styles, the Authoritative parenting structure has been most consistent in results of positive outcomes for parents and children alike. This parenting techniques comes highly recommended from most mainstream, western parenting specialists as being associated with high levels of self confidence, positive academic records, well-developed social skills and control of emotions mostly. The authoritative parenting techniques style uses strong behavioural control and high parental responsiveness to your children’s behaviours. With a bit of demanding-ness and a lot of warmth, this parenting technique implements authoritative demands so that children do as they are told, and understand what is expected of them behaviourally. Think warmth, rationality and higher standards over all else. So how do Authoritative parenting techniques raise independent, self-reliant, socially accepted, academically successful and well behaved children?
With less cases of depression and anxiety, authoritative parenting can make a monumental difference for children of many different backgrounds and ethnic groups, which often times leading them away from engaging in anti social behaviour and drug use. Not to be confused with an “all or nothing” demeanor, the authoritative parenting techniques encourage that middle ground between being too strict or too casual of parents. You can adapt these principles into your own parenting techniques system by finding your line between the two; taking a moderate approach that emphasizes your standards while being a warm, nurturing responsive parent who shows respect for your child as an individual gives teaches them to be rational beings. Encourage your child to be obedient, and give them the space to mature and cooperate while providing them with adequate emotional support and a firm standing.
4. Attachment Parenting Techniques Style
Stemming from the research and studies based on early childhood separation behaviour, child grief and caregiver attachment, this parenting techniques style has been refined many times over. Of all the attachment styles between parent and child – secure attachment, avoidant attachment, ambivalent attachment and secure attachment – there has been a lot of research that delineates the Attachment Parenting techniques style from the others. The goal of this parenting is aimed at the most positive outcomes, towards a more secure attachment from your children.
The goal and focus of this type of parenting techniques is to build and grow the intuitive, emotional and psychological bond with your child. As a crucial function in healthy child development, many research studies have proven that the basic sense of emotional and existential security is essential. When a newborn’s needs are quickly responded to, that baby builds a positive regard towards and understanding that they can be well trusted and will be loved unconditionally. Focusing on meeting those needs of the child is best done by building that very close attachment between the parents and the children. So how does this parenting techniques work, exactly?
This structure revolves around the belief that consistently meeting the child’s emotional and physical needs quickly, builds that parental bond and instills a positive attitude towards the parent being unconditionally loving and nurturing. The more you pay attention to your child, the better you get to know them, and be able to read them and understand their needs. That bond is extremely fragile at first, but grows strong with time and careful patience, although not to be confused with dependent child rearing! It’s definitely a difficult balance, but provides lasting results that are better for preparing your child’s healthy independence.
While it may take some patience building your ultimate parenting techniques, it’s important to keep the motivation in mind: building that strong, loving and trusting bond between you and your positively behaving child. As we all attend different schools of parenting (our families!), it’s important to find our best parenting techniques that are unique to our children. Attend our upcoming Parenting seminar to learn more about the best parenting techniques for you. Read more about it here, and don’t forget to mark your calendars!