One of us just happened to hear a speaker giving some quick parental advice this morning about raising competent, compassionate children. There was a moment where eyes glazed over – “Oh no – not more parenting advice. There is enough information out there to fill ten libraries and we still don’t see it getting any easier for parents”. But the speaker caught our attention with the simple acronym STAND. Hmmmm… clever, short – maybe it is worth a listen.
As we share the acronym meaning, instead of looking to see what you are neglecting, take a look and notice how much you are already doing. Most parents we know are already STANDing for their children as described below and are not giving themselves enough credit .
So bear with us as we paraphrase a bit and add a few of our own commentaries on STAND:
S = SHOW your children you trust them by giving them age related responsibilities. Small children love to help. Older children would rather be playing video games – can we blame them. But giving children and teens responsibility which they can handle successfully builds confidence, strength and character.
T=TRAINING – This is self-explanatory. We don’t know a single parent who isn’t teaching or reinforcing something almost daily. Well , OK, maybe some of you take a day off when you are totally exhausted. But those days do not count. So we won’t bother to talk more about training! Besides, don’t we all sometimes wonder who is training whom.
A= ALLOW children to be themselves and to make mistakes without ridicule. Allow them to make age appropriate decisions. Foster and reinforce their own unique gifts. Allow yourself to listen to their perspectives which may be very different from your own. Sometimes a fresh perspective is interesting and at the very least our children will feel heard.
N=NURTURE – Needs no explanation. If you have read this far hoping to glean some new pearl of parenting wisdom, you are a parent who cares. But you know this “stuff” already. Trust us, you are already a nurturing parent. 🙂
D=DEMONSTRATE – Model the moral, ethical and caring behaviors you want to instill in your children and teens. And since we are all human, model saying : “I am sorry”, or harder yet: “I was wrong”. Sure they may try to use it against you temporarily, but it is probably the most humbling, powerful modeling example you can give your child.
So there you have it! Did you notice how much of this you are doing already?
We would only add two things. To the “D“, add DEVELOP a sense of humor about your imperfections, your children’s imperfections and your family’s imperfections. You would be shocked if you lived in the home of the most perfect parents you know. (And if they really turn out to be that perfect, let’s hope they have a sense of humor in the midst of all that perfectionism. Because trying to be perfect is truly exhausting!)
Lastly, remember patience, energy levels and wisdom vary from day-to-day. So lighten up and don’t berate yourself. STAND and deliver the best you can for today . Our best efforts are not perfect efforts – they likely never will be. But caring and trying are the things our children instinctively feel and really need the most. That is all we can ever give anyway – our varying best. Happy parenting. 🙂 🙂 🙂
(c) 2013 Kids Love Reiki too! ™
visit: www.kidslovereikitoo.com for further information about children’s Reiki classes