Is your child strong-willed? Good. If they’re not, you’ll be interested to see why this is a good thing. Your child is an extension of yourself and you want them to thrive in every way possible. Raising a strong-willed child takes attention and detail, but it is possible.
When raising kids you want them to embrace the good traits that you have and probably ignore some of those bad ones – not that we have any…
One goal when raising children is to help them develop a strong will. You want to find a good balance with this, however. Instilling a strong will in a child will go a long way in helping develop confidence and self-assurance. You don’t want this strong will of your child to go too far in the opposite direction.
A child who becomes overly stubborn and refuses to cooperate is the opposite intention you want. It’s all about finding that middle ground so that your child is well-adjusted, self-assured, strong-willed, but still considerate and compassionate. This article will look at how to raise a strong-willed child.
Why Is Having A Strong-Willed Child So Important?
There are many benefits to having a child that is strong-willed. One of these is that they will be very clear in what they want and think. There is a lack of ambiguity and any confusion over which direction they are heading. This can be as simple as their hobbies and interests right up to what they want to accomplish in their lives.
This self-assured child has no problem expressing their thoughts and desires. This is great for you as you don’t have to try to interpret what they think or want. Children that grow up like this can end up as great leaders.
These strong-willed kids are the future of tomorrow and can help influence and motivate people down the road (they’re probably already doing this now). This is where that balance is important. If their strong-will cannot be compromised, it leads to overly aggressive, uncompassionate, and unreasonable leaders.
Whether this is on a small or large scale, it’s not ideal. Letting your child know that you’re the parent and the authority needs establishing early on. Setting ground rules and expectations will go a long way in shaping your child the right way.
You need to show that you’re in control without it leading to battles or excessive conflict.
What Do Children Need to Get On the Right Track?
If you’re like most people, you’re probably pretty busy. With the stresses of work, school schedules, and after-school activities, it’s hard to get one-on-one time with your child or children. The problem that has arisen over the years is that parents have felt guilty.
They feel this guilt because even though they are working hard to provide for them; they feel they’ve neglected their kids. To make up for this, many parents will try to smooth things over by giving their kids something. This is not an ideal way to go if you’re hoping to raise a strong, independent child.
Instead of giving your kids physical things, give them yourself. Give them your heart, your attention, and your time. This will go a lot further in helping mold and shape them into strong-willed children.
Children subconsciously know this: “If you love me, you’ll spend time with me.” This will be the most important thing you can do in developing your child. Besides that, here are 4 other tips in helping to raise a child to be strong-willed.
1. Start Looking at Yourself
Children model the behavior they see. So if they see you acting in an insecure and irrational way, they will copy it. You need to set the standard in your house so that your kids can pick up on your own strong-willed traits. This will not be possible all the time, but the more you can show it, the more they can adopt it.
This involves being strong and firm in situations and adopting a “tough but fair” demeanor. Keeping your word and showing integrity will also go a long way into helping shape your children.
2. Don’t Undermine Your Spouse
If your child is in a two-parent family, you need to remember that they came from both of you. Any disagreements between spouses can end up reflecting on the child. Not only are they observing stress-inducing moments, but any insults at one another can be an insult to your child.
Disagreements need to handling in private without exposing children to it. They will pick up on these disagreements and it can undermine their own self-worth. This can lead to their own insecurities and a tougher time developing a strong will.
3. Let Them Know It’s O.K. To Fail
Children afraid to fail will always have trouble approaching new situations. We are all born with a raw personality or temperament. This is a child’s own natural tendency in how they react to things and how regulated they are. In most situations, a kid will show some wariness.
This is ok with things like strangers, but in other settings, it could hold them back. Even a naturally strong temperament child can become shell-shocked from constant failure. It’s important for you to let them know this is natural and it shouldn’t overcome them.
Be the support system if (and when) they fail so they know it’s not the end of the world. When they begin to develop this mindset, it will help them adapt to the world and to social situations.
4. Always Value Their Opinion
Kids will say A LOT of things that will leave you scratching your head – and that’s ok. They are learning their place in the world and building their own experiences. They have a very limited perspective of thoughts and opinions that they are trying to develop.
And this takes time. To help build their self-assurance, you need to always value their opinions. A child is shaping their thoughts and ideas and this needs to be encouraged for their will to become strong. These opinions are going to naturally develop and change over time, but you need to give them the freedom and security to explore them.
When your child feels valued and listened to, it goes a long way to strengthen their will.
Raising a child will not be a picnic all the time. It will be filled with highs and lows as they develop into their own person. To raise a strong-willed child, you want to make sure you are nurturing them in the right direction. A child with a positive strong-will can be a great benefit to society and to others.
Raising them to become these self-assured people just requires awareness, discipline, and consistency.
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