As parents, we have to teach our children how to behave. We have to discipline them out of the hitting stages of the terrible two’s. They have to learn how to not react out of anger when upset. How to get their emotions under control so they can play well with other children and practice patience. It’s all a part of development into healthy habits.
So the question is, how are you doing in this area?
Are you short fused with your kids and people around you? Are you a reactionary person who is causing discord in your relationships? Are you argumentative when you don’t get your own way? Are your emotions under control? In short , are you leading by example? Be honest with yourself. Because this matters more than you could imagine.
The problem is that as we grow, the pressures of the world get into us. Namely, resentment. It may come through traumatic experiences and events that bring great stress. But for the most, it all begins when we see the imperfections of our parents. Without sugar coating it – the hypocrisy. The disparity of what is enforced on you against how mum and dad behave themselves.
I bet right now you can think of a moment (or many) of your childhood when you were told off or punished for a behaviour your parents actively engaged in daily. It may be something as small as rudeness. ‘Bad for you – fine for me because I’m a grown-up and it’s different!’ Trust me, they are watching closely, and these little moments begin a cycle of distrust, confusion, and they will begin to resent you for it.
And because little children are sensitive beings who want mums and dads’ approval, that tinge of anger that gets in will create an internal conflict over time that will cause rifts and problems in your relationship with them.
This isn’t a blame game. We all have to forgive our parents or continue to suffer and spread the dysfunction. Most people who become parents have no real way to deal with the stresses of life and were never shown how. Because of their resentments and their reactions to the pressures of the world, they made mistakes. Just like we have.
Children look up to us, and our habits eventually become their’s. So we need to be more conscious of ourselves and how we behave around not only our kids but others in general. We all want a better world, and it begins with us being better parents. Things may not change overnight because change takes work. But we can begin on a path of progress and awareness.
The reality is that we are not perfect. This doesn’t mean we can not improve. We can build healthy relationships with our children based on trust, truth, and love. All it takes is firstly being honest with ourselves about our own conduct, and secondly, seeing what can we change to be the example we expect to see in them.
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