6 Tips for Raising a Happy Child
Raising a happy child might seem like an easy task. The media constantly bombard us with advertisements for toys and video games that promise to do the job for us.
As these devices and gadgets keep little ones entertained, it would be easy to believe that raising a happy child is really this simple.
Unfortunately, the commercials are wrong. The idea that new toys can fill emotional gaps is misleading.
Of course it’s important for children to play and have fun. But that’s not the only thing they need.
Child rearing involves more than providing for your growing family’s material needs.
There are certain guidelines for raising a happy child that we, as parents, should keep in mind.
We’re responsible for our children, and we can’t allow them to grow up to be insecure adults.
Overprotective parenting results in children who have never been allowed to fall, and don’t know how to get up and keep going.
Childhood is one of the most important stages in life. It’s a time to make memories and learn lessons that will last a lifetime.
Taking this away from a child is irresponsible and selfish, and can damage your relationship.
Raising a happy child means being present
What children want most in all the world is their parents’ attention. Toys and gifts will always come second to mom and dad’s affection and approval.
Our kids see us as a role model and protector. It’s up to us to live up to the trust they place in us.
1. Motivate them to give the best of themselves
We all have the ability to get what we want. Good luck is anything but random: success comes with effort and determination.
When your child really wants something, give them the encouragement they need to achieve it.
Teach your children that with hard work and self-confidence, they’ll have a higher chance of making their own dreams come true.
If your child has an artistic, sporting or academic talent, motivate them to develop it. Every single human being is outstanding at something.
Nurturing our children’s gifts can open many doors.
This doesn’t mean forcing kids into extra-curricular activities, however. Your child needs to enjoy what they do in order to truly excel.
2. Support them in their decisions
Your child will make both good and bad decisions in life. Celebrate the good ones with them and sympathize when things go wrong.
Making mistakes is the best way to learn. Every time your child stumbles, show them that they can get back up and do better next time.
There are parents who get upset when their children make mistakes. Expecting your child to be perfect doesn’t favor their self-esteem.
We’re all human, and we all have the right to turn the page and start over.
3. Listen to their opinions
Many parents believe their children’s opinions aren’t valid, just because they’re children. This is a big mistake.
A child should be able to express their opinions just like an adult, and should be listened to and respected.
According to the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child, this is a fundamental and inalienable right.
We need to listen to the youngest members of the family, particularly when the decisions we make will affect them.
Although parents sometimes need to make the final decision that’s best for everyone, it’s important to listen to children’s opinion.
“It’s never too late to have a happy childhood”
4. Teach them to be in contact with nature
Nowadays, many children would rather stay at home in front of a computer or phone screen than go out and play. But contact with nature is part of raising a happy child.
Take your family to a natural beauty spot for a picnic. Motivate them to take part in an outdoor sport, or just go for a walk together.
The fresh air will do your child good, and playing outdoors is a good way to meet other kids, whether on sports teams or at the park.
A child who loves nature is a child who values and respects everything around them.
5. Be strict when you need to be
Don’t give in to your child’s every demand. Many parents think that giving their children anything they want is the way to win their favor.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. Raising a happy child isn’t the same as bringing up a spoiled one.
Punishing your child when they’re rude or mean is the right thing to do. All children are disobedient or badly behaved sometimes.
Show them that this kind of behavior is wrong, and that their actions have consequences.
6. Be sincere and honest
Sincerity and honesty are the foundations of a healthy relationship, and are key to raising a happy child.
Answer your child’s questions politely and objectively, as long as you think they’re old enough to handle the topic.
Every family is different, of course, and it’s up to parents to make this decision.
If we show our true selves to our children and never lie to them, we’ll strengthen our family’s bonds.
This way, our children will know they can trust us, and will feel confident asking us for advice whenever they need it.