I was asked recently how do I manage my 4 year old? How do I discipline him? And what is my game plan now that he is growing up? And I didn’t know how to answer. I thought for very long but couldn’t come up with an answer. I really don’t know If I manage him..if I have a strategy, a game plan!
Do you need a strategy or a game plan for your kids? I don’t have one. I don’t manage my kids. I don’t have a ready made plan where they would fit in. Each day is different and I am learning each day.
Though I never thought of it consciously earlier but now I have realised that kids learn from me and you. I really believe if I set in a good example they will follow it. I did lay down rules for some acceptable and unacceptable behaviour but he does not and will not follow it because I will tell him to. (I wish it was that easy).
There have been times when I had to speak it out, reiterate what is right and wrong. There have been times of time out, of misbehaviours but even then I would want him to understand right and wrong on his own and follow correct behaviour. I do not want him to apologize because I am angry or because I said so. I want him to learn from his mistakes and not repeat the same mistakes. Ofcourse I am there to guide, to support, to spell it out but he has to learn on his own. He has to understand and see the difference between right and wrong.
As adults we also falter, misbehave but it is okay as long as we know the difference between right and wrong. Same goes for kids...they are kids, of course they will make mistakes, misbehave, hurt you, hurt themselves, and hurt others. As I see it, this is not the problem. The problem would be if the child is not conscious on his own that his behaviour was not correct. As parents we can keep reiterating that this is right and this is wrong but a child would learn best from live examples.
I have recently been questioning myself a lot...Am I conscious that he is watching and learning everything from me? I will be frank I was not; but now as he is growing up I see him picking a lot of things from me, This has made me self conscious.
There have been days when he has sulked and misbehaved a lot, in retrospect I do realise that there could be things that he picked from me. There were my bad moods that may have spilled over to him. Hence I have learned to behave, to follow more rights and do less wrongs.
No I don’t manage him, rather I don’t know if you can manage kids but I am learning and growing up with him as a parent.