Why You Should Stop Helicoptering Your Kids and Tips on How to Stop Doing that!
We were born in an era when we went around the neighborhood, straddled on our bikes, playing for hours. Our parents let us be and did not helicopter us around. In the non-cell-phone times, our moms just cared about us having our meals at the right times. But today, times have changed, and how!
With cell-phone toting kids going around, parents want to know exactly where they are and what they are doing. Interestingly, we discussed the other day how we did not have to tell everyone or update our presence to everyone we know. But now we do and especially parents who have to keep a hawk’s eye on their kids.
Well, we understand their concern given the times. But this also makes parents overly anxious and worried when they don’t hear from their kids. This constant monitoring strips them of their (the kid’s) survival skills, and they feel lost when they finally leave home. So, what exactly is a helicopter parent?
It was coined by Dr. Haim Ginott’s 1969 book, Between Parents & Teenagers, who said some parents hover around their kids like a helicopter. The term saw a dictionary entry in 2011. There were other similar terms such as lawnmower parenting, cosseting parent, or bulldoze parenting. So, here are ways that you can cut out the helicoptering bit by incorporating these tips.
Teach Your Kid Basic Life Skills
Teach them young, yes that’s right when your kid is growing up and just before they go for college. Create a list that would cover all the things or the life skills you would want to teach her. Things that may seem mundane to you, but teaching them will make them more prepared for the life they are going to lead.
Covering basic skills such as cooking, doing laundry, changing a tire, cooking, and so on. The only way to do it is not as if you are teaching them. Instead, you should set an example by doing it yourself, give an interesting spin to the regular stuff. Only then will kids pick up the skills fast.
Teach Them How to Interact Face-to-Face
Most of the children today and parents are fixated on social media and miss out on the basics of human interaction. Most kids today, are losing the art of mingling with people face to face. So it is time to get out there and teach them the art of meeting with people and indulge in conversations. The children need to learn the art of looking into the eye of people and strike up conversations.
Make Them More Responsible
Psychologists insist on teaching the children the skill of doing chores, and the earlier they pick up the skill, the better it is for them. They also need how to get up in the morning on their own. Parents don’t always need to be alarm clocks. This is an easy way for us to start teaching our kids responsibility at a young age.
Teach Them How to Fight Their Own Battles
Coach children how to speak with authorities with respect and politeness. Things that seem simple to you, such as addressing men as ‘sir’ or women as ‘madam.’ Also, teach them to speak with respect with everyone, literally everyone they meet without bias. This will stand them in good stead in the future. If they do badly in their exams, instead of calling the teacher, emailing, or texting them, tell them to fight their own battles and resolve their issues.
Helping Them Make Smart Choices Without Your Influence
Parenting is often defined as training children in a way so that they can leave when they have to leave. This is a great place for the parents to begin. Instead of helicoptering them and doing all their jobs themselves, rescuing them at the time of trouble, stand back and watch them solve it themselves, whichever way they want to handle it. Their technique may not be ideal, but they will learn from their mistakes and even stop making the same mistakes the next time.
We know as a parent, helicoptering or helicopter parenting maybe our second nature. But in some ways, we may end up doing things that may be detrimental for them instead of being good for them. So, let them learn from their own mistakes and go on to do the things they want to do and the way they want to do it.
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