Parents want to see their children succeed in everything they do. And more often that requires building a solid foundation from the outset. That’s why it’s not surprising that parents push their children for the better in sports, academics, extracurricular activities, and more. No mum or dad would want their child to be left behind.
However, in our race to raise successful kids, we also need to remember that true success often overlaps with happiness. In the larger scheme of life, it doesn’t matter if you ranked first in all your classes in school. But if you can’t hold it together as an adult, it would really not be a successful life.
Of course, it’s hard to balance what’s best for your child with what makes them happy. However, do remember, a happier child is more likely to turn out to be successful as an adult. Which is why we have compiled seven ways on how to raise a successful and happy child for more holistic growth.
1. Happy Parents Make For Happy Children
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This may seem a little odd but bear with us. A happy home makes for happy and successful children, and this directly comes from the lives of the parents. Parental depression does have a negative outcome on children and is likely to cause behavioural problems in kids.
It’s also a key reason for parenting to be less effective. That’s why parents need to sort out their issues in life before wanting to raise kids. This is not to say that parents need to be perfect in every way. Mums and dads are flawed too and can have the occasional outburst, but if it’s happening frequently you may need to introspect on your life and its effect on the children.
That’s why the first step on how to raise a successful and happy child is to be a happy parent. Make time for yourself, do things that make you happy as an individual. Take the time out to laugh and lighten the mood irrespective of all the mess in your life. It’s worth the effort in the long run.
2. Teach Kids To Build Relationships
A child’s first relationship is with their parent, which is why you need to actually spend time with your child. They learn to build trust and empathy from relationships. Encourage kids to perform small acts of kindness that will help them understand the value of things. It will help them become better people in life.
Relationship building is also an essential skill when it comes to socialisation and negotiation. It not only helps the child to become a better person but also will also help him understand how to value another person’s contribution in his life. This is will be extremely important for him as an adult – both professionally and personally.
3. Praise Effort, Not Results
Your child isn’t the pet project that you need to seek perfection in. Children are flawed, messy and happy on their own. So do not stress them beyond a point to get the perfect result in everything. Instead, concentrate on the effort they put to do the task.
Your child made a new painting? Appreciate his efforts gone into the painting over the final outcome. Your child looks at you for validation and when you only praise the results, you are stopping their minds from learning further.
However, praising effort makes them go back and try it again without the fear of failure. This helps develop a growth mindset allowing them to stay curious, discover new things, and stay curious in life.
4. Teach Self-Discipline
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Self-discipline weighs more when it comes to raising children over intelligence. Children who are self-disciplined understand the good from the bad, right from the wrong.
A child who can resist temptation is more likely to do better in life and stay happy. Self-discipline can often overlap with delaying gratification. After all, it’s about teaching your child to not immediately give in to the temptation.
Researchers say preschoolers who are able to delay gratification show signs of intelligence, success, and better social skills in adolescence. Self-discipline also helps in learning and processing information. A self-disciplined child will be able to cope better with stress and frustration.
He will also have a better understanding of social responsibility and will be able to make informed decisions. This, in turn, leads to not only success in school but in life as well.
5. Allow Them To Make Their Own Decisions
For kids to be happy and successful, they need to be able to make decisions on their own and believe in them. That’s why you need to give children autonomy from a young age. This will teach them about making the right decisions for themselves and dealing with the consequences of their actions.
For instance, allow your child to decide whether he wants to complete his homework first or play. And see how it works out for them.
If your child is able to manage both, you need to be worried about one less thing in life. But if he’s not able to complete the homework on time, you’ve just taught him a valuable lesson. This is a far better way of teaching your child about life, rather than being preachy about it.
This also helps make your child independent and capable of taking care of himself.
6. Assign Chores
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Another way to make your child succeed in life is to teach them responsibility. And that comes from giving them tasks. Start with small things like assigning chores at home. From clearing up their own toys to helping arrange the dinner table, small tasks around the house will help them achieve a sense of accomplishment.
Making your child do chores also helps them learn about the dignity of labour, respecting all professions, and develop a work ethic.
7. Don’t Make Success And Happiness An End Goal
The last thing you need to learn on how to raise a successful and happy child is the both these things are a part of your life but not the end goal. Happiness is a state of mind and needs to be constant during good times as well as in adversities. Of course, this doesn’t mean that your child needs to be smiling throughout the day. Instead, it’s about having a positive outlook on life.
Much like happiness and success, sadness and failure are part of our lives. And your child needs to learn that. As children grow older, they will suffer heartbreak, loss of a closed one, failure in school, college or work, and so much more. Not every relationship is meant for life. You may have little control over it and that’s just how life turns out to be. But how your kid deals with it is in your hand.
At the end of the day, life is going through a roller coaster with loops of happiness and sadness. So remember to teach your little one that life only gets better after every turn.
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