The more independent a child becomes, the easier it gets for parents to focus on other tasks. Making your child independent doesn’t have to wait until he or she reaches a certain age.
It’s understandable that children are not able to do some things on their own but it is also true that they are fully capable of handling so many tasks that we, as parents, decide to do for them anyway.
This is probably because we are either looking to save time and do everything quickly or we are not sure whether our child will actually be able to do it. Either way, this is not going to be very beneficial for the child in the long run. They must become independent not just to learn to be responsible but also to make choices on their own and learn right and wrong.
How to teach a child to be independent is a question that every parent must ask. It’s important because as a parent your number one goal must be to make your child self-reliant and self-sufficient as early as possible. If you want your child to take ownership of their life and become confident decision-makers later on, keep reading on.
How to Teach a Child to Be Independent?
Parents must have faith in their child’s capacities rather than believe that their child is not capable of doing anything on their own. This is the first step in teaching your child to become independent and self-reliant.
You don’t have to become a dictator for each and everything your child does whether it is choosing clothes to wear or doing something in their spare time.
Remember, your child may not be able to do everything to perfection so you need to be ready for surprises. But be assured that these small mistakes are going to teach them a lot, so see them as opportunities to become more independent as they grow up.
Here are some tips to teach independence to your child at an early age.
Trust Your Child to Be Capable.
Children must have a sense of self-esteem to be able to feel responsible. If you keep telling them that they won’t be able to do a certain task ever, it can serve as a blow to their self-esteem, and chances are, they would actually never attempt to do that task. So, have faith in your child’s capability and encourage them to take on different small jobs every day.
Give Them Responsibilities.
Assign your child small responsibilities that they can handle on their own and praise them when they are able to complete them. Children love to act as adults and therefore they would happily do whatever you give them. If they are able to complete a certain task, make it a routine so that they would consider it their responsibility.
Support Their Decisions.
If you want your children to make their own choices and be able to differentiate between right and wrong, offer your support when they make decisions. You can tell them the merits and demerits of the choices available and then let them choose depending on their own understanding. If they make a wrong decision, they will learn it by facing the consequences and not repeat the mistake again.
Show That Failures Can Be Overcome.
Failures are part of life and your child must learn it at an early age. But instead of feeling dejected because of failure, your child must understand that there are more attempts to come.
Parents often lose it when it comes to teaching their child how to do a certain task. If they are not being able to learn at a particular time, there is no need to show impatience and anger. You can postpone it for some other time and do something else instead.
Make Time for Certain Activities.
Children are not capable to handle activities like adults, so they would need more time even for small tasks like brushing the hair. Make sure you give them the time they need instead of getting impatient and not allowing them to test their skills on a certain task.
Help Them Solve Problems.
When a child learns to solve a problem on their own, they become independent. If they are hesitant to think of a solution, offer them your help but don’t do it for them completely. You may also offer a reward if there are multiple siblings to the one who will be able to solve a certain task. It motivates children to think hard and come up with a viable solution.
Remember independent children tend to be happier and more confident other those who rely on their parents all the time. While it’s a fact that children need their parents’ support when it comes to emotional decision-making, that doesn’t mean parents have to dictate them every time they are in the process of making a choice or solving a problem.
Give them instructions on how to complete a task and then see if they are able to follow those steps. Show them by doing something together on how an activity can be done in a professional manner.
Parents these days tend to do a lot for their kids. While they want to enhance their child’s decision-making skills, they do not seem ready to make them totally independent until a certain age.
When a child learns to be independent, it prepares them to handle stress and make choices depending on what makes them happy.
But parents find it difficult to hand over everything to their child because they are afraid they won’t be able to do it in due time or do something wrong.
This is known as “fear-based parenting” and it must be overcome in order to raise happy, responsible, and self-sufficient children. You can add responsibilities one at a time to see how good your child is able to handle the pressure.
There is no need to rush anything as every child learns at their own pace. You must target priorities and look for opportunities to teach a new thing every day. The tips discussed in this post, how to teach a child to be independent, are meant for every parent who wants their kid to become self-reliant from an early age.
Also read the article: Why is it Necessary to Understand Child Psychology?