Why is it important for our children to be independent?
Naturally, we want what’s best for our children. This often means we’re quick to tend to their every need (even into adulthood). But if you want to give them the opportunities to be happy in life, you need to inspire independence.
Whether it’s training them to accomplish feats by themselves, giving them space to succeed and fail or allowing them to make their own choices about what they want to do. Even letting them get excited and feel disappointment. There are many ways to develop independence. Doing so is important in many ways. It boosts their self-confidence, belief in their abilities, and helps form their own identities. It also teaches them to figure out life values, make important decisions, and solve tough problems for themselves.
Whether you’re an expecting parent, a new parent or already have a few children in tow, raising your brood to be independent individuals may seem like a daunting task. But take heart in knowing that you’re not alone. If you’re stuck for ideas, you can ask your own parents for advice, they’ve already had practice raising children before! In fact, the Raising Modern Australia Report reveals 73% of Australian grandparents are regularly involved in their grandchildren’s lives and are on call when needed.
Ultimately, it’s about teaching your children the skills they need to thrive. To be courageous enough to try new things, meet new people, succeed in their careers, and build their own families.
4 Simple ways to inspire independence
Teach them to overcome failure
Life is full of disappointments, brick walls, hardships, and stigmas. But just because your child fails in an attempt to get ahead, it doesn’t mean they are a failure. It’s important to teach your children that failures are a natural part of life – and to guide them in understanding what went wrong and how they can do better next time.
Have children help out with chores
It sounds simple, but it works. From folding the laundry to helping out with meals, getting your children involved in daily chores is beneficial to their development and self-sufficiency. As your kids become more adept, build chores into their calendar and make them part of their daily routine.
Open a bank account
When your child is old enough, take them to the bank and open up a savings account. Under your guidance, this can help them learn the value of saving, budgeting, and how to be accountable for their own spending habits.
Get a job
Whether it’s in a café, retail shop, or interning for a big company, proper jobs will help develop your children’s money management, work ethic, communication and collaboration skills – everything they need to become an independent young adult.
Does technology provide parents more control or give children autonomy?
Our relationship with technology is becoming more and more complex – particularly when it comes to our children. Do you set time limits on Internet access or restrict your teenager’s smartphone usage if they’ve been rude? Do you reward your toddler for good behaviour with screen time?
In many parenting cases, technology access has become a means of behavioural control. But studies have shown this approach can have negative effects that impact the trust you build with your child, in addition to how and why they use technology.
While it’s natural to keep tabs on our children’s whereabouts and technology use, there are also issues of privacy and psychological control to consider. Instead of technology being used as a bargaining chip, it can be better to focus on ways it can enhance learning and self-worth, create positive connections, and build independence.
The path to independence
Teaching your children to be independent is a life-long journey. It’s your job to be a secure and loving role model from the start, to guide them when they fail, and to praise them when they succeed.
No two families are the same but the above insights could help you to inspire your children to be independent.
Do you have any advice for parents wanting to raise independent children?
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