The above picture is a common site around this house – especially now that summer is here. The boys are getting better about helping out with household chores like laundry and dishes, but I could be better at delegating and enforcing, thus making them more responsible. Do you ever fall into the trap of doing things yourself because it’s just easier? Well, this may be helping you in the short term, but it is not helping them for the long term. So how do we as parents make our kids more responsible? Here are 5 ways to do just that from guest blogger Aradhana Pandey.
One of the best life lessons you can give to your kids is that of being dependable. Modern day’s kids are so enamored by the digital world and technology that they get very little time to reflect on the priorities of life and to focus on things that matter. Not only does this way of life stagnate their mental and physical growth but it also makes them shun responsibility. Teaching your kids to look beyond their personal interest goes a long way in defining their core personality and behavioral traits that will stay with them for a lifetime! If your kids are soon approaching their adolescence, establishing a sense of conscientiousness and self-reliance is highly important so that the impending adulthood doesn’t hit them with a jolt! Here are five ways you can make your kids more responsible:
1. Encourage Them To Take Up Household Responsibilities – While your child may run away from responsibility saying he’s “busy”, there are little chances that he’s indeed busy doing something productive. There’s nothing apart from school and co-curricular activities that should keep him remarkably occupied. Make it a practice to encourage your child to participate in daily household chores like helping with cooking, cleaning, gardening and babysitting his younger sibling. The more accustomed he gets to these activities, the greater is the sense of responsibility he will develop towards the family.
2. Be Stern With Expectations And Consequences – Though the use of force can create a lot of negative air between you and your kids, a mild use of authority and assertion is important when the situation demands. Set clear behavioral expectations for your child to adhere to along with the consequences of not paying heed to them. For example, if you’ve asked your kid to wash his dishes by himself after every meal but he fails to do so, let him know that you’re not pleased. Tell him he cannot go back to watching TV or playing his video game. Doing this will help him realize the gravity of the situation.
3. Volunteer Together – A great way to teach your kid the joy of giving and helping others is by participating in volunteering activities together as a family. Take time out every week to extend your support to the needy and encourage your child to be at the forefront while you participate in these activities. Volunteering will make your child a lot more conscious about the society and how each of us play a role in making the world a better place to live in.
4. Encourage And Praise Responsible Acts – Just how you await your boss’ appreciation and encouragement at work, your child also values your words of praise for a job well done. Whenever your child willingly expresses a spark of responsibility, don’t let it go unnoticed. Make sure you give him a pat on his back to reinforce this positive act of self-sufficiency. This gesture will have him know that you are observant about his behavior and hold a deep regard for the same.
5. Teach Them To Take Up Accountability For Their Own Actions – How often have you heard your child complain that his poor grades are not his fault? They are because his teacher didn’t do a good job explaining? Though this could be partially true, it is important that your child learns to take responsibility for his own actions. In a situation like such you should reply saying, “I am sure you’re right, but you could have done a lot better had you put in effort understanding the lessons on your own.” Make your child understand that as he grows up, he needs to stop relying on others for his work; rather, he should take the onus on his own shoulders.
To ensure that your child grows up to become a well-rounded and capable adult, it is important that you shape his childhood and adolescence accordingly. Most importantly, set a good example of responsibility and structure through your actions. Remember, as parents we all want to nurture and protect our kids, but not until you encourage them to take ownership will they develop courage and self-confidence!
Author Bio – Aradhana Pandey
Aradhana is from India. She is a veteran writer on topics concerning parenting, child nutrition, wellness, health and lifestyle. As a regular contributor to popular sites like Huffington Post, Natural news, Elephant journal, Thehealthsite, Naturally Savvy, Curejoy and MomJunction.com, Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.
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