The conventional wisdom that discipline is the most important thing when raising kids is wrong.
A lot of people think this way because they haven’t had good experiences with their own parents, and so they’re looking for a way to avoid making the same mistakes.
But the reality is that discipline doesn’t matter nearly as much as love and respect—and these things can help you avoid disciplinary problems in the first place!
Here are some things that are more important than discipline:
A sense of humor
This is a big one. Humor helps children learn to think critically and creatively, problem solve, communicate with others, express themselves and even manage their emotions.
When you’re laughing at something funny together, you are getting the chance to do all of those things at once! It doesn’t matter if your child is laughing because they think you’re funny or if they just really like penguins.
The important thing is that they are actively participating in a fun activity with you and learning valuable skills along the way.
Faith in your kids’ innate goodness
One of the most important things you can do as a parent is to have faith in your kids’ innate goodness.
It’s easy for parents to get caught up in all the little things our children say or do, and try to correct them.
But if we hold our kids to unrealistic expectations, we may end up punishing them for reasons that aren’t so great—like making them sit at dinner because they said something rude instead of eating quickly so they can play outside with their friends.
When my son was three years old and still learning how to use words well, he would tell me often that he wanted his own room because his sister had one (which wasn’t true), and then he’d open up her door and shut it again after she’d moved her things into his room just so I’d praise him for being good about sharing!
It took me several hours before I realized this was happening; when I finally did realize what was going on, it made me feel terrible about myself as a parent because these are not good reasons for praising someone!
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Resilience is a quality that helps you bounce back from failure. This can be especially helpful for kids who are striving to reach goals and overcome obstacles.
As such, it’s important for parents to show resilience to their kids so they feel supported when they need it.
How do you show your child that you’re resilient? By showing them how you handle difficult situations! For example, if your child fails an exam, consider talking with them about what happened and what they learned from the experience (i.e., “It was hard taking this test because…”).
You might also explore ways in which the situation could have gone better or worse (“I wish I had studied harder before taking this test”).
This way, even though things didn’t work out exactly as planned, there are still lessons to be learned from the experience—and hopefully next time around things will go differently!
A willingness to see the world a little differently than you’re used to, and to embrace it
If you want to be the kind of parent who’s willing to let things go when your kid is being a brat, it’s important that you’re comfortable with not being right all the time. It may feel good to have your child accept whatever you say as gospel and obey without question, but this is probably going to come at the cost of a relationship built on honesty and trust.
When your kid tells you something or does something that makes sense in their own mind—even if what they’re doing seems irrational or unsafe—listen instead of telling them why they are wrong.
You might even learn something! In fact, there’s no better way for adults (and kids) alike than through listening: maybe there’s some good reason why your child wants ice cream for breakfast; maybe there’s some aspect of life from which adults could stand to learn (see above). But if we don’t listen first, then how can we ever hope to understand?
Awareness that there are many ways to solve a problem, and that your way is never the only way
One of the most important things you can do as a parent is to realize that there are many ways to solve a problem, and that your way is never the only way. This can be hard because children are so often stubborn, and they don’t always listen or seem like they’re listening. But it’s important to remember that your kids have their own unique personalities and talents. You can’t force them to be like you; they need room to grow into their own person.
The more flexible and adaptable you are as a parent, the better chance you’ll have of raising happy, healthy children who respect themselves as well as others around them—and that’s what matters most!
Flexibility is a good quality for parents to have. When you’re flexible, you’re able to adapt and move with changes in your life and the environment around you. Being flexible helps you stay calm and collected in the face of unexpected challenges, which is essential for parenting.
Let’s say that one day after school your 8-year-old son comes home and informs you that he made the honor roll. You might have originally planned on taking him out to dinner as a reward, but now it turns out he has basketball practice at 5 p.m., so instead he’ll just get some pizza on the way home from his game (and maybe some ice cream when he gets home). Having flexibility means being ready for these kinds of surprises without having a meltdown over them—and if anything goes wrong (like if they lose their keys), having patience while they figure out what they need to do next
An understanding that there is no such thing as perfection when it comes to parenting
It’s also important to understand that there is no such thing as perfection when it comes to parenting. As we all know, children are not born with an instruction manual. They’re learning their way through the world just like you are, but they don’t have access to the same resources and information that you do. It’s OK if your kid turns out differently than how you planned—you can change your behavior and try again. You can always try harder or do better next time, but there will never be a “perfect” parent or child because every situation is different from the last one.
A belief that you can recover from any mistake, big or small
Mistakes are a part of life, and they’re not going away. So don’t let your child think that they can only make mistakes and never recover. You want them to learn how to deal with their own mistakes, and not just have you swoop in after the fact to clean up their messes. If you raise children with the belief that they can always recover from even the most serious of mistakes, then it will give them a sense of empowerment when faced with future challenges.
Remember: no matter what happens, there are always paths forward!
Respect for yourself and for your child
Respect for yourself and for your child is the foundation that good relationships are built on. And respect isn’t just about showing respect for your child, but also for yourself.
Why? Well, if you don’t respect yourself, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important in parenting and discipline breaks down. If your child misbehaves or doesn’t follow rules, it’s hard to take their behavior seriously if you don’t think they’re capable of changing their actions (or at least not nearly as much). At the same time, if you don’t believe in yourself—your decisions, values and authority—then how can you expect anyone else around you to do so?
“Your presence” is the most important thing you can give your kids. The world is a scary place, and children need adults who are there for them, ready to listen and support them when they have questions or concerns.
Being present in the moment doesn’t mean that you’re only focused on your child at all times—not at all! It means being aware of what’s going on around you, so if your child needs help or wants to share something with you (or even if they just want some attention), they’ll know they can turn to you without hesitation.
And just by being there yourself, this helps show that even though there are many things going on around us in life—good and bad—we still have each other as family members who care about each other’s well-being above anything else.
Much more than discipline, respect, patience or faith.
Much more than resilience and awareness.
- When it comes to raising kids, discipline is important. But kindness should not be overlooked.
- If you’re kind to yourself, your children will learn that self-respect and self-care are vital. They’ll learn that they deserve respect and care in return.
- If you’re kind to the world around you, your children will come to understand what it means to live in a community—one where they can trust others and feel safe. The same goes for animals: if we treat them well and show them love, our kids will learn how important compassion is!
Respect is one of the most important things you can teach your child. It’s not only important in relationships with others, but it’s also essential for a healthy relationship with yourself. A child who feels respected will be more likely to listen and less likely to act out than a child who is made to feel disrespected by their parents.
Children need to know that their opinions matter, even if they aren’t in agreement with yours. As long as your children understand that their opinion counts, even if you don’t agree with them 100%, then they’ll continue sharing theirs with you, which will lead to better communication between all parties involved!
Forgiveness is one of the most important things you can teach your kids. It’s not an easy task—for a lot of people, this kind of forgiveness requires some serious soul searching and maybe even some therapy. But it’s worth it if you’re able to do it.
Forgiveness isn’t forgetting; it’s letting go. When we forgive someone, we’re releasing them from the burden they’ve put on us. We don’t have any more animosity or anger toward them; instead, we let go of our desire for revenge and move forward with our lives as though nothing happened at all (even though sometimes this can be difficult).
This sounds like an easy process: just forgive! But in reality it takes work—you have to think about how you’ve been affected by what happened and why forgiveness may be necessary for your own peace of mind before moving forward into a new relationship with the person who hurt you or disappointed you so badly in the past
Patience is another virtue that needs to be cultivated and practiced. Children, as well as adults, are full of energy and enthusiasm. They want things done right now, while we often prefer to take our time. Yet it’s important to remember that the ability to exercise patience is a skill that can be learned over time through practice.
If you find yourself frustrated with your child when they don’t listen or do what you ask them quickly enough for your liking, try taking a deep breath and giving yourself some time before responding or telling them how wrong they were for not doing as asked immediately (even if you think so). It doesn’t mean you have given up or given in – quite the opposite actually! You’re showing your child how much self-control means by being patient with them when they act out because they’re tired or hungry…or whatever else might be going on in their world at the moment.
A virtue that should be cultivated in children, gentleness is an important quality for a child to have as they grow up.
It’s also something you can teach them from a young age and the benefits will last them a lifetime. Think about how many times we’ve heard people say something along the lines of, “I’ll never forget when my dad/mom did X for me.” Those memories are great for us as adults because it inspires us to do similar things for our kids one day. But there’s another benefit of showing kindness and being patient with your children: It will help them learn how important it is not only to be kind themselves, but also how much more difficult life can be if we’re not kind ourselves.
Empathy is not a skill you can learn once, it’s something that needs to be taught and practiced over time. In fact, there’s evidence that empathy may be hardwired into our brains from birth. A study done by researchers at the University of Cambridge found that newborns less than one hour old could distinguish between happy and sad faces.
We’ve all seen how important empathy is when raising children, but what exactly does this mean? In simple terms, it’s the ability to understand and share emotions with others — including those who are different from us or who live in different parts of the world. This understanding helps kids develop compassion for others as well as strong emotional intelligence skills later on in life (which has been linked to higher income potential).
Discipline is definitely necessary, but it’s not more important than love and respect when raising kids
Discipline is definitely necessary, but it’s not more important than love and respect when raising kids. Discipline is a tool to help teach kids how to be responsible and make good decisions, but it’s also the way you show them love and respect.
Discipline helps your children learn how to be independent thinkers who can make their own choices. When you’re patient and use positive reinforcement, your child will understand that his actions have consequences—and that he can choose whether or not those consequences are worth it.
In the end, you might find that discipline is not as important as we make it out to be. You don’t have to be strict or harsh in order to raise a well-behaved child. You just need patience, love and respect. And if you remember this when it comes time for bedtime tonight? Well then I think we can both agree that it will be one of those nights where everybody wins!
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