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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Am I an Effective Parent? Definitions and Habits

Tuesday, May 3, 2011
I have been thinking a lot lately about parenting, and what makes a good parent. I think it must be this time of the year. So I wanted to rerun a series from last year. I hope that you enjoy.

During my normal day I read quite a few blogs, some Pagan and others on varying topics. And a few weeks ago I came across a post titled The 8 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers and this led me to think about myself as a parent. Am I an effective parent? If so why is that, what makes me one?

So I sat down and begin to brainstorm. Starting with what exactly does all that mean? The definition of an effective parent I came up with; is a parent that has good kids. I mean obviously they have managed to do a good job competing with the world around us. You know these kids, the opposite of the ones that we see in the restaurant or the stores screaming at their parents and throwing tantrums. But the definition just doesn't stop there; An effective parent puts their children first, takes time to teach them and to be involved. But they don't go so far as to make their children think that the world revolves around them. It is a fine line between an effective parent and an ineffective one. Children need to feel important but not set before their own well being or beyond what is good for them. Again these are those children that throw tantrums and scream in the stores.

Then I looked at myself and my family and realized that I was describing myself and my wife. Now we are not perfect, far from it, but we are effective. We don't have to yell or even punish most of the times. Our children for the most part are well behaved and respectful. They are happy and well provided for with a strong sense of self-esteem. This has been drilled into them from the earliest ages that they were capable of understanding.

As I continued with these thoughts I decided to follow this path to its logical conclusion; What habits do we and others, as effective parents, practice? Here is a list of the top eight that I came up with;

  1. They are Present
  2. They are Patient
  3. They Listen and Respond
  4. They are Involved
  5. They Build Traditions
  6. They Make Everything a Lesson
  7. They Always have a Rubber Chicken (aka find the humor in all things)
  8. They Show Love

As we go forward into May, starting this Thursday, I am going to talk about each of these habits more in depth. So subscribe to get all the updates over the next few weeks. And don't hesitate to comment and agree or disagree. I know that all of our parenting styles will vary and the point of this is not to make anyone feel like less of a good parent but rather to help us all strive towards being more effective parents.

Hope to see you all around.

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