Early childhood discipline ensures that you raise great children

As parents, the utmost priority is to create a loving and secure environment for your children and help them learn how to function successfully in society. Children crave stability, security and love and if you invest some time and effort today in the upbringing of your children, you’ll reap the rewards in the shape of well rounded, well groomed personalities they will hopefully become tomorrow.

When your children are young teach them some essential lessons in life. Consistency in discipline and habits is very essential in early years. These are some of the things that should be infused in children from early childhood so that they become happy, caring adults:

Respect for others

Disrespectful behavior among children especially teens, where children are discourteous towards their parents and older people and answering back rudely has become an accepted thing today. The tussles between daughters and mothers-in-law in society usually forces young children to take sides. Any display of temper towards the offending member is considered a source of amusement for the other party.

If you laugh off small acts of rudeness as “cute” or “clever,” the chances are that these incidents will snowball into bigger issues later on. It is very important to set firm standards of respect in the home. Fight your own battles but leave your children out of them.

Good manners

Children should be taught to say “please,” “thank you,” “I am sorry” and “May I” at a very young age. Good manners are never out of fashion and always leave a good impression on others. Your children learn by imitation and follow your footsteps so you must try to be good role models for them.

Good hygiene

It is very important to inculcate good hygienic habits in your children while they are still young. Washing hands often, brushing teeth twice a day and taking baths regularly should be a rule rather than an exception. Children who practice good hygienic habits are more eco-conscious and aware of their environment.

Good sportsmanship

Children should be taught to be gracious winners and courageous losers. The parents’ reaction to their wins and losses often determines their on-field and off the field attitude. If you lambaste your children for their defeats and belittle their efforts, you may turn them into sulky and whining players. If you crow too much over their triumphs, they can become conceited, egotistical monsters. The parents must keep their reactions within acceptable limits to encourage the children to be fair spirited and generous team players.

Controlling temper

Tantrums never look good, not even if the child who is throwing them is 3, chubby and cute. Be firm with your kids and don’t give in to their every whim and demand. The world will not come to an end if the child does not get his favorite toy with Happy Meal at McDonald’s, or the latest action figure, or the coolest gadget and the sooner he learns this “bitter truth” the better for his future personality. Being an only child or the only son should not be one way ticket to excessive parental indulgence.

Children, who are allowed to get away with bad behavior when young, are not adept at controlling their anger when older.

Tolerance and compassion

Teach your child to accept diversity of race, religion, culture and traditions in the world. Help him understand that poverty, suffering and deprivation that he sees around him needs his helping hand. Encourage your child to take part in charitable activities no matter how young he is and introduce to him the sublime joy one can only experience by bringing a smile on another person’s face.

Good communication skills

Some children are shy or less talkative by nature. These are not undesirable traits by any means, but if children cannot express their feelings comfortably or if it hinders their personal growth in school, then parents must help their child overcome these issues. Sometimes children are afraid that others will make fun of their ideas or mock their feelings. This causes them to become introvert and silent.

Overly protective or over bearing parents can also make their children unsure of themselves which results in poor communication skills. Children should be encouraged to discuss their problems with their parents. Their suggestions and ideas should be sought in family affairs and planning trips. Help them put words to their feelings.

Love of art and culture

Have you ever noticed how much young children love to dabble with paints and colors? How much colorful pictures and word books attract them? It is only when they are older that they seem to lose interest in books and art and deem them childish or ‘uncool.’ They’ll rather decimate aliens in computer games or watch endless TV programs than open a book. If you nurture their interest in the early stages, there is a chance that they’ll remain interested in ‘finer things’ in life later on. You should appreciate and encourage their artistic efforts and reading abilities so they value their importance.

Consequences of bad habits

Living in the 21st century has made children wise beyond their years. Advertisements and media have made them aware of many things that are not normally discussed in average households. Such times call for firm and frank discussions whereby children understand that making bad choices in life will have bad consequences.

Importance of Family Time

In many households, children eat, sleep and do their homework glued to the TV screens. Too much television has an adverse effect on children’s behavior, concentration span and communication skills making them querulous and rebellious. Make your children get used to family dinner-time, where everybody discusses school, homework, friends, work and any problems that arise in their young lives without the distraction of TV and computer.

Love your children, respect their individuality and give them full support in their endeavors and you’ll have great human beings when they grow up.