HOW TO RAISE RESPONSIBLE, RESILIENT AND RESPECTFUL CHILDREN
1. Be an exemplary role model of respect – A parent is a child’s first and greatest teacher. Your child will do what he sees and if he witnesses disrespect – even from you towards him – this is what he will emulate. Have set rules and boundaries for what is acceptable and perpetuate mutual respect within the home. Teach and enforce personal accountability and learn how to nip disrespect in the bud.
2. Create strong family values – Teaching family values such as honesty, integrity, tolerance, generosity and respect begin in the home and are always timely and imperative. Once ingrained -intentional acts of respectfulness, kindness and caring are something your child will do instinctively.
3. Keep channels of communication open. Demonstrate the art of listening, compromise, problem solving and conflict resolution. Adults must spend quality, meaningful time with their children and teach through example that kindness and respect are the foundation for positive and energized change. Disrespect must never be tolerated and perpetuating mutual respect in the home is what your child will learn and take out into the world.
4. Become morally empowered to teach empathy. Your child may be the center of your world, but the world does not revolve around him. Teach your child the art of giving of himself. Nothing feels better than doing something positive and self-less for others. Your child will learn how to master this by doing good deeds with you individually, or collectively as a family.
5. Don’t be afraid to say no – Parents must challenge the status quo and become proactive rather than reactive. Don’t give in and don’t ever bribe your child. Giving in, which looks like a solution and an immediate fix in the short term, typically will not be the right solution in the long term.
6. Live by the motto “I am the parent you are the child” – Your child is your child until he becomes an adult. Only then can he be a “friend.” No exceptions!
Dr. Jodi Stoner holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. She is a practicing Licensed Mental Health Counselor working with couples and individuals facing life-changing events and with families in transition. She specializes in life skills training, relationship building and self-esteem empowerment. Additionally, she has a Masters Degree in Education. Dr. Stoner has been an Expert Witness in the Dade County Court system. She is commencement speaker and workshop trainer in various organizations. She is a member of the American Psychological Association and Psi Chi Honor Society and is the co-author of best selling non-fiction, Good Manners Are Contagious.
Lori Gersh Weiner owned and operated American Barrister, a successful legal recruitment firm, “ranked as one of the top attorney consulting firms” by New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia law firms. Recruited into the education sector Lori was quickly promoted to National Director of Career Services for Computer Learning Centers, Inc. In that role she administered policies and procedures for 27 schools nationwide. She has been awarded numerous performance awards and, in 2005, was a speaker at the Florida Association of Post-Secondary Schools & Colleges Conference in Orlando, Florida. Ms. Weiner has a degree from Camden County College in Blackwood, NJ and is a member of the International Coaching Federation. She is also the co-author of best selling non-fiction Good Manners are Contagious.