From Self-Centered to Child-Centered

This might be hard to believe, but it’s not all about you! I know… catch your breath, grab your proverbial pearls, and have a seat.
Once you become a parent, you are no longer the center of attention. I know this is contrary to most mantras and belief systems, but in order to raise resilient, resourceful, respectful, responsible kids, you must make sure that your kids know just how important they are to you. If kids think that no one is watching and that no one cares what they do, they will behave like what they do doesn’t matter. They will not recognize or realize just how valuable and significant they are. As a parent, it is your responsibility to make sure that your kids know that they are the center of your world. Letting them know just how much they matter to you is critical in the development of your child’s self-esteem, self-worth and self-image.
Here are a few things you can do to let your child know just how important he/she is to you…
You must tell your child:
1. You love him/her daily
2. He/she is important to you
3. You are proud of him/her
4. You are thankful for him/her
You must make your child a priority by:
1. Spending quality time with him/her doing something that he/she wants to do
2. Making what is important to him/her important to you
3. Asking his/her thoughts and opinions and value his/her thoughts and opinions
4. Encouraging him/her to discuss his/her concerns with you

Try implementing these behaviors into your daily routine– Before you know it, your kids will begin to realize and behave like they matter… because guess what, they do!

By: Amber C. Gardner, MA, LPC, NCC

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