Parenting: The Basics, Revisited in 2012

It’s that time of the year when we all look inwards and try to re-orient our lives based on our values and priorities. It is a good time to go over the basics and see how we’ve been doing.

Everywhere you turn, there are numerous guides, reviews, books and articles with long lists of what you must do and what you mustn’t to be (or become) a ‘good’ parent. Confusion abounds.

But parenting isn’t really all that difficult – you’ve been doing it for a bit now, and for all that you think you are doing some things ‘wrong’ and need help, you must acknowledge that there are many, many things that you’re doing ‘right’! 🙂  It’s just that you tend to devalue the things you do ‘right’ while focusing on the things you need to work upon. This gives you a falsely prejudiced view of yourself as a parent.

So maybe one of the goals or resolutions you need to add to your list for the year 2012 is that you will have a greater appreciation of yourself as a parent. You will admit to yourself the numerous times you’ve done a great job: whether it was handling your child’s misbehavior, answering a difficult question, helping him resolve a dilemma, supporting her through the heartache of broken friendships… :-).

As you triumph over adversity and tackle problems, you wonder if there is some way to focus on just a few things and still manage to get the most from parenting your child. I am convinced that this is not only possible but also desirable. When you focus on many things, there is a greater chance that you will either lose focus or get confused or just tire of the enormous effort it takes to keep track of them.

So I decided to inaugurate 2012 with a series on what I believe are the basics of parenting. I’ve tried to distill the basics into 5 Do’s.

1. Ask – ask questions.

2. Be – be who you are.

3. Do – do things with your child.

4. Explain – explain what is going on.

5. Respond – respond to the situation.

Over the next 5 days, I will share with you the details of how you can use these 5 basic actions over and over again, in multiple situations, to make a real difference to your parenting experience and your relationship with your child, no matter what his or her age might be.

Of course, there are hundreds of other things besides these 5 that you need to do as a parent. But I feel that these 5 easy-to-do things will go a long way to make parenting a fun experience for yourself, and your child.

Ensure you get to know more about these parenting basics by clicking on the “Sign me up!” button on the top right of the webpage – it’s free! 🙂

I look forward to hearing from you – your concerns, your stories, your experiences – whatever you’d like to share.

Happy 2012! I wish you a year of carefree parenting! 🙂

3 Responses to Parenting: The Basics, Revisited in 2012

  1. Archana Malhotra January 3, 2012 at 5:45 pm #

    This article is really wonderful and so reassuring! Doesn’t this happen to all of us mothers alll the time.

    • Vinita Zutshi January 6, 2012 at 3:17 am #

      Thanks, Archana! Please feel free to share your stories as well. 🙂

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