Parenting Tips: From First Time Mums To First Time Parents
Being a parent is the most important and rewarding job you will ever do. But it can be a little overwhelming, especially the first time, with so many new experiences and situations to deal with. This is why we have put together these parenting tips to help you help your child through all the early stages of their development so they can feel comfortable and happy while always being their authentic selves.
- Give plenty of praise
It can be easy to notice the negatives when you’re busy and having a tough day as a parent. But your child will feel much more confident if you always find something to praise, rather than criticising all the time. One of the most important parenting tips we can offer is to comment positively on the little things. It will also help you to gain a positive aspect on things, even when times can get tough. Has your toddler put their toys away after playing with them? Have they been particularly helpful with a younger brother or sister? Tell them you’re proud of them!
Always remember that negative comments can have a damaging effect on your child’s self-esteem. It’s okay to make mistakes some of the time, it’s only natural. But let your child know when you could have approached a situation differently. This can help them learn that you are not perfect and they don’t have to be too, that making mistakes is okay and a part of learning and simply life! You can guide your child’s behaviour by letting them know that you notice when they do things you like.
- Be consistent
Children thrive on routine and consistency – even infants need to know what to expect from you. This extends to every area of their lives: they need to be able to predict how you are going to react to certain situations, and they need to know what the boundaries are. These things need to be kept the same at all times if your child is going to feel secure and confident around you, which is why consistency is frequently mentioned when it comes to tips for parents.
If you challenge strong behaviours one day, don’t ignore it the next. The boundaries, and your reactions, always need to be as consistent as possible.
- Talk to your child
Children are equal members in your relationship, and they need to feel as if they have some agency. This is why it’s essential to include them in your conversations, and to be available when they need to talk to you. Setting aside a dedicated night every week when you spend quality time together as a family is a good idea. Mealtimes are also a great time for this. This will give you and your child the opportunity to talk about all the things that happened in your day, your wins and your challenges. Talking about what you are grateful for also helps highlight the good times.
It’s also important to remember to reason with your child. Keeping things playful will help a great deal. They are much more likely to respond positively if you explain exactly why you can’t allow them to do something, rather than just telling them they can’t and expecting them not to challenge you. It should always be okay for your child not to agree with your choices. But you are the adult in this relationship and you need to make the big choices. This doesn’t mean you need to change your decision, stay true to it, just respect your child’s feelings at the same time.
- Set a great example
Your child looks to you for guidance in absolutely everything. Even when you’re not aware they’re watching you, they are subconsciously learning from your behaviour. This is why as a parent, you have to be very careful how you act and speak (most of the time). You need to make sure you’re setting a good example for your kids to follow.
The ways in which you interact with your family and friends could have an impact on the way your child treats their classmates at preschool. We’ve definitely seen it in action. It can be difficult being a role model, but it’s worth checking your own words and actions if you want your child to learn all the right behaviours.
- Be kind
Kindness is the most important thing you can give as a parent, especially to yourself! If your child knows they’re loved, and they feel secure in their home environment, they will do better outside the home, too. But your kindness also needs to extend to yourself. Being a parent isn’t easy, and you need to be positive about the incredible job you’re doing. Remember to praise yourself for all the things you’ve done right, instead of only seeing the negatives in yourself.
Children are empathetic, and your child will pick up on your moods. If you’re feeling happy and confident, and being kind to yourself, your child will feed off your positive energy and feel more positive themselves.
Being a parent is the most difficult job in the world! You’re doing an amazing job – you should feel proud of yourself!
More parenting tips for new parents
If you’re a new parent and you’d like more tips and advice, please check out our blog, which has plenty of useful articles for parents. Or, for more personalised advice, please contact us – we are always happy to help.