Ep. 1: Do Not Let Kids Win
Such a provocative title, am I right? In this episode, Dr. Deborah Burton shares personal experiences that highlight some of the struggles of parenting.
Parents want what is “best” for their kids, but kids usually think other things are best! Navigating this dance with your kids can be a bit like arm wrestling. There will be days where you are losing, but there must be days where you are winning. Our goal is to guide our kids forward and teach them how to thrive on their own.
But while they are young, kids may not be equipped with the skills to make the choices they want to. Parents all have different styles, but it is a good idea for you to put more weight on doing the things you choose versus doing what kids want.
The options young kids often want to make are usually not the good ones! Their choices frequently include things where they choose what they want to do and to do it for as long as they want. Clearly, their goal is to set their own time limits. Allowing young kids to make these choices early does not help them to understand that adults will set the limits.
Do not feel that you must allow them to make those choices! Early on, you need to let kids FEEL like they are making choices may by offering them several options that you choose; choices that all fall into your acceptable range. Do not include their choices that are not on your list of options.
Know what your goals are
The key is for YOU to decide what you want so you can be proactive about getting them instead of being reactive and responsive to what they want!
As kids get older, they should be given more freedom to make their choices; however, the ability to make choices should be something that is earned. Toddlers are demanding and that is to be expected; however, it is not pretty when kids grow up and continue to act like toddlers!
As exhausting as parenting is, there may be times you just don’t have the strength to push. “Pick your battles” is the classic parenting rally cry. But you must not forget that there will STILL be plenty of battles to fight, on a daily basis! If you are not experiencing a tug of war, you may have let kids win.
Understand the ultimate goal
Compromise. Yes, not particularly shocking, but there must be a compromise. Parents must decide what they want for their kids and then expect to NOT reach those goals!. But if you set your goals high enough, the compromise will be a raging success!
Listen to this episode where Dr. Burton shares insights into raising her kids. Many listeners have read and heard about her successful daughters, but the struggles of early parenting were real. There will be many times when you might want to quit and let kids win, but you must find the strength to keep going.
Each time you stop working toward the goals you have, you allow your child to get one step closer to winning and making all the decisions. I have seen kids in my office who reached this stage. This is not a good look on a teenager. Hopefully, this podcast will motivate you and inspire you to make the commitment to not let kids win!
5 things you should accept about parenting
- You need to make a plan for how you want to raise your kids
- Your kids are going to push back, away from your plan.
- You need to push them back, toward your plan.
- You will not win and will not achieve your goals
- BUT your kids should not win either!
We all love to win, but sometimes, not losing is an amazing accomplishment!
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