3 tips that will help improve your parenting skills and your sanity
I see many children in my practice and I hear different parents saying the same thing about why they ended up at my door.
Here are a few of the most common:
I can’t control my child they don’t listen. Help me!
The school thinks my child has ADD. Help me!
My child seems anxious or depressed. Help me!
When I treat a child, I always want to know what’s going on at home. We are all products of our environment and our perception of what is happening to us. It is important for us to look at what we may be doing and how it is affecting the situation. When treating children it is necessary to look at the family system and how it interacts. I ask the parents of my client’s to take a good look at their actions and behaviors.
Here are 3 things that we can do in order to help our children and ourselves.
1. Be present when interacting with your kids.
In the busy world we live in with so much to do and so much information coming at us at a time, slow down. It is so important for us to put away the cell phone, get off the computer, turn off the television, and spent time with your children without any interruptions. I can’t stress enough how important it is to give our undivided attention. Kids that don’t feel they are being heard may be attention starved and act out in order to get it.
2. Work on yourself.
Are there negative attributes in your child that you see in yourself? Our children are mirroring us. If we are anxious, depressed, afraid, or crippled by past trauma our child is going to see and feel these same emotions. One of the best things we can do for our kids is work on our stuff.
3. Lead by example.
You know the old adage do as I say, not as I do? Well, I regret to inform you that doesn’t work. Our kids are little versions of us. How we talk and feel is imprinted on to them, ALL OF IT. Another thing we can do is hold ourselves to the morals and values we hold our kids to.
It is amazing how the home life, parent-child relationship, and child’s behavior can change by helping ourselves. When the adults are balanced in mind, body and spirit the children generally follow suit.
Brent Berman has a holistic psychotherapy practice in Jupiter, Florida. Previously he worked at the Family Resource Center, which is a DCF case management agency. He was therapist for both children and parents. He believes in changing the world one smile at a time.