Instead, gently guide them and encourage taking on skills, but allow them to find out which of them ignites their passion. Then when they do find something they love, you must encourage them to develop it – who knows, it may even lead to a career opportunity one day. Here are some ways to encourage your children to take on skills without being too pushy:
Allow them to explore
One of the most important parenting tips is to take off the pressure from your children and just allow them to explore different activities a little bit. They might take a while to explore and try different things to find the one they love. This stage of exploration should be encouraged because it allows them to figure out what they enjoy for themselves.
Keep in mind, that for your children to uncover their strengths (and passions) they should have a range of experiences over the years. And this is not limited to extracurricular activities at school, but activities at home and with different children of different age groups too. Do what you can do help your children to become inspired.
Encourage them to start young
Look, there is no real age cut off for anything. There are people in the world who have learned new languages and skills into their 70s (and possibly even later). But the general rule is that it’s much easier to learn these skills at a younger age. The best parenting tips include encouraging your children to try things at a young age – no, not age 2 or 4 or even 6, but whenever is right for them. According to research, the brain continues to develop into the 20s, so ideally any time before then.
Don’t be one of those parents
You know the ones we are speaking about. The ones that shout from the sidelines get themselves worked up if they feel that their child is not performing ‘as well as they can’ and then lecture their children about it afterwards. You don’t want to be one of those parents that put too much pressure on their children and get angry about ‘bad performance’.
You want to support and encourage your child all the time. While gently encouraging adequate training or practise is a good idea, pushing children could lead to burnout or them just quitting. Any activity should be more fun than anything that evokes anxiety, guilt, shame or any other negative emotion.
It’s all about balance
One thing to keep at the fore of your mind when it comes to parenting tips is a balance. Like most things in life, when planning your children’s extracurricular calendars balance is key. Don’t overdo it for your children (and keep in mind the financial implications of dance lessons, music lessons, art lessons, etc.). But do give them enough opportunity to pursue the things that they love. Also, be patient with your children and be okay with the fact that what they are excited about this week may be very different next week. Children will be children.
Let your children be who they are
When it comes to parenting tips and all the things that you ‘should do’, it’s important that you let your children be who they are. They may not like or be good at what you want them to like or be good at. Also, some children thrive with lots of different activities packed into their week, while others cope best with one or two extracurricular activities and enjoy being at home the most. As a guide, some people say that it’s best if children are involved in three activities – one cultural, one social and one physical.
Know when to take a step back
For most parents ‘letting go’ is not easy in myriad ways, and when it comes to your child quitting on something you have paid a lot of money towards, bought the kit for, and fetched and carried from and to, then this rings especially true. But you need to take a step back from the situation. It doesn’t mean your child doesn’t have staying power; it may just mean that it’s not for them.
Try to get your child to finish the season or go for any lessons you might have already paid for and then let them move on without being angry about it. You need to respect (and encourage) your children’s choices. At the end of the day it’s important that your children are healthy, happy, active and curious – try not to get attached to any particular outcomes of this.
Would you like some more parenting tips? Then we suggest downloading our useful ebook, A Mother's Guide to Raising Successful Children. We at AR Hotels are at the fore of family-friendly holidays where a stay at any of our Costa Blanca resorts is bound to be an incredible trip with the children.