Parenting Your Child Up The Slippery Slope To Adulthood Raising a child entails lots of wisdom, effort and patience

Parenting is a tough, nerve-racking, back-breaking, task. You want to do the best for your child but when the kids arrive all our plans and expectations about your parenting skills just fly out of the window. You get caught in the reactivity of life and dealing with the unending demands.

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Parenting Alone

After my son’s father died unexpectedly, I remember the horror of the realization, that I was solely responsible for this helpless 2-year-old. I was frightened and terrified.

How would I manage to raise this kid all alone? It was a struggle to deal, lead, support, encourage, discipline, provide, so many things a parent needs to do for their child.

Now, as my son inches towards his 18th birthday, I decided to review what I did right and did not do right. Was I a good enough mother? Was I able to successfully raise a decent adult?

Raising A Succesful Adult

Julie Lythcott-Haims, author of the book How to raise a successful adult states that every 18-year-old needs to have the following 8 skills:

  1. Talk To Strangers
  2. Find His Way Around
  3. Manage Assignments, Workloads & Deadlines
  4. Contribute To The Running Of A Household
  5. Handle Interpersonal Problems
  6. Cope With Ups And Downs
  7. Earn And Manage Money
  8. Able To Take Risks

Julie Lythcott-Haims TED Talk – How To Raise Successful Kids – Without Over-parenting

Raising A Brilliant Child

While authors of the book, Becoming Brilliant, Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Kathy, Hirsh-Pasek list the 6 essential skills children need to become successful adults

 1) Collaboration
Learning to get along with others is one of the most important skills. You need not like someone but being able to tolerate and work with them is one great skill.

2) Communication
Learning to connect, discuss, negotiate, cajole and influence is another must to negotiate the world.

3) Content
Knowledge is important. Knowing the blueprint of how things work is important.

4) Critical Thinking
How to operate and navigate to arrive at your own conclusions and judgments.

5) Creative innovation
It’s the 10,000-hour rule: You need to know something well enough to make something new.

6) Confidence
To believe in yourself and take risks.

My Own Lessons In Parenting

Well, my son seems to have turned out okay.

The key to raising a child is making them your priority. They have to deeply feel that they matter to their parents.

When they know they are truly loved, they will have the courage and confidence to meet the world without compromising on their core values.

Parenting is not about constantly struggling to be perfect or give them the best. It is about letting them be without us imposing our preconceived notions of who they should be.

Models To Emulate

Most of all parents have to be models of good behavior if they want their kids to be well-behaved. Oh, there will be that odd temper tantrum and occasional sulking. They key is you not getting triggered to react negatively.

An MIT study has shown that qualities like grit and resilience are not formed through the traditional mechanics of ‘teaching’ ” but rather through a child’s environment. When a child watches a parent struggle to provide for their kids and be there no matter what, they innately model after their parents. We are the mirrors for our children.

However, most parenting tomes don’t stress enough on inculcating two vital life-skills, a grateful heart and a sense of humor. Without these two qualities, no matter what you give or do for your child, they will never know how to be SOULFULLY HAPPY.

Further Reading

How to Raise an Adult by Julie Lythcott-Haims

 The Gift of Failure by Jessica Lahey.

Becoming Brilliant -What Science Tells Us About Raising Successful Children  by Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Kathy, Hirsh-Pasek

Fail, Fail Again, Fail Better: Wise Advice for Leaning into the Unknown by Pema Chödrön 

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