“Do not try to be a perfect parent, be a real one”. In the world of parenting, everything falls in the grey area; there’s no right or wrong and what works for one may yield just the opposite result for the other. The seemingly perfect child or perfect parent is just that – seeming. Birth of a child also brings along the birth of parent – with both the child and the parents in the same learning curve.
Needless to say, parenting is the toughest job in the world as we give the world its future citizens which shape its future along with their own. Numerous books, articles, blogs and posts throw at us parenting advice everywhere we turn. Some say expose the child to reality while some practice subtlety. Some parents dote; while for the rest of us, children are just another member in the family. Some give in to tantrums while some advocate strict discipline. So what is the right parenting technique? How does one raise perfect kids?
Firstly, parenting isn’t science to formulate techniques. It’s an art that comes from the heart. And the first step is – aim not for perfection but for principles, not for success but for ethics. A child is as much an individual as any adult – with his/her own interests, talents, abilities, likes & dislikes; each with its own limitations. The most overriding approach to parent a child is to lead by example as children learn not by words but by observing. Approaching a problem with anger inculcates the trait in the child too; harsh words, jealousy, hatred is all learnt from the environment the child is brought up predominantly in. If you want love, show love; if you want patience, be patient yourself; if you want the child to listen, learn to become a good conversationalist yourself.
One of the biggest mistakes most parents commit in the guise of being concerned about their future is comparison. There is a very thin line between motivation to do better and pushing beyond capabilities which could boomerang beyond a point. As parents, it becomes our responsibility to identify their capacities and limits and work on their talents and accept their shortcomings. Again, here the candid objective is to treat the child as how we would want to be treated ourselves; just like any individual. Every child is a distinct personality. Just as all investors do not become Warren Buffet, all software engineers do not become Bill Gates and all businessmen do not become Ambanis, similarly every child has its place in the world. The greatest parenting skill we can display is to push them to realize their maximum potential while simultaneously accepting and loving them for their imperfections.
If each of us could prioritize to inculcate better values and raise better human beings, success in life would duly follow. What the world needs more than good professionals is better human beings who would become good professionals.