* E if you are reading this, this picture is a joke okay? #notkidding #sometimes
Parenting is definitely not a walk in the park (whether in Luneta Park or in Jurassic Park). But there are some things parents can learn how to make it a fruitful experience. So sometime in 2009 I attended a parenting seminar sponsored by Victory Fort. Pastor Paolo Punzalan was the key speaker. He is now the lead pastor of Victory Fort.
Here are some golden nuggets of wisdom I learned. (I am constantly trying to not to forget to do them!)
Questions to ask yourself as a parent:
- What’s one character trait your child got from you? Answering this question allows you to empathize with your child. Answer: Being a little sarcastic.
- How are you training up your child? Whether you actively train your child or not, you are training her by allowing other influences (what she watches, what she reads, her social circle) to train her. Answer: She has a great school, a great set of friends and a love of reading. But honestly, I can do more to make sure she reads and watches things that uplift her)
Lessons you must teach your child: ARROWS. Yes, ARROWS.
A – attentiveness
- Showing worth of the person/thing/activity by giving UNDIVIDED attention; thus when your child is speaking to you (and vice versa), she should be focused on what you are saying. (And I should be focused on what she is saying!)
- Train your child to respond with respect. Again, this is a two way street.
R – relationship
- Connect with your child beyond affinity and position.
- Rules without relationship will lead to rebellion (“I am sitting down but in my heart I am standing up.”)
- Types of Parenting Style:
Dominant: high rules, low relationship (“You go to sleep at 9pm. That’s it. I don’t care what you are doing at that time.”)
Permissive: low rules, high relationship (“You go to sleep whenever you feel like sleeping.”)
Neglectful: low rules, low relationship (…)
Loving: high rules, high relationship (“Our rule is you should be in bed by 9pm. This allows you to have a full sleep cycle and you feel refreshed and not tired the next day. So you can sleep at 9pm, you should make a plan so that you have done what you need to do by 8:45pm and are preparing for bed by then. I can help you plan your day, if you’d like.”)
R – responsibility
- Your child must 1. Know what is expected of her 2. Do what is expected of her
- Exemplify by keeping your own commitments
- Keep your word. A child’s trust is a vulnerable thing that must be nurtured.
- Follow though.
- Teach and allow your child to do work to the best of her ability.
- Teach your child to do right when she has done wrong and be there to support her.
- Teach her accountability
- Your goal for your child is for her to have internal good governance.
O – Obedience
- Teach your child to Immediately, Completely and Cheerfully carry out the direction of those who are responsible for her.
- Your child must learn FIRST TIME OBEDIENCE (no need to countdown or repeat yourself). Consistent follow through plus support is the key.
W – wisdom
- Seeing and responding to life situations from a perspective that transcends current circumstances
- To have wisdom, you must teach your child to think critically. Walk her through the process. Avoid providing pat/formulaic answers.
- Teach her to ask this of her herself: “In light of PAST, PRESENT, and FUTURE circumstances, what is the right thing to do?”
- The question sometimes is not between good and bad but between wise and unwise.
S – self-control
- Rejecting wrong/unwise desires and doing what is right/wise.
- For your child to have this, you must be firm and consistent.
And the best parenting advise I ever received:
Do not discipline when you are angry. It will do more harm than good. Always discipline from love.