There has been a huge buzz going on this season because of the Chrisland scandal. It just brings to mind just how difficult parenting is. That is because ‘it takes a village to raise a child.’ A dutiful child is a product of a firm foundation, choice, and environmental influence. As a parent, you have no control over the latter, but you have control over the foundation you give your child.
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This is where intentional parenting comes in. Being intentional means being invested and involved in your child’s upbringing. This means preparing yourself for the journey in advance and taking steps to be deliberate on how you raise them. From fixed bedtimes, to what they watch on TV or on the internet and the songs they listen to.
Below are a few things you can do for your children on your journey to being an intentional parent:
A popular bible verse says train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Instill biblical values in them. Tell them how to have healthy self-esteem and body image. Help them how to love themselves by reaffirming all that is positive about them. Let them know how to say no to things that do not align with their conscience/value system. Help them develop firm convictions. Let them know they have a duty to be accountable and responsible humans. If you believe in God, Karma, the universe, etc., explain why it is important to do and be good always because there is always a day of reckoning.
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Sure, they will make mistakes along the way, help them learn how to rise from them and never repeat them. If you ingrain your family’s positive value system in them, they will have the courage and resolve to abstain from peer pressure and contrary environmental ideologies.
Not all fears are irrational, so brush nothing aside. Be observant, watch their choice of words. You could catch wind of wrong ideologies from regular interaction with your child. From the way they feel about people’s comments to opinions about their bodies, you may get a whiff of body image or self-esteem issues. From their excessive interest in their genitals, you might get wind of sexual curiosity and address it with a sex education talk. If they can figure out the root of their fears, they will overcome them and find the resolve they need to be more confident in their own skin.
Help Them Confront Their Fears
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Your child should feel safe and confident in you to share their curiosity, shame, rage, failures, and joys. Be so present in their lives that even when they mess up, they come running to you. Let them know they are secure in your love and you won’t judge them for their failings. After all, you too were once a child. I’m not saying blur the lines of your authority as a parent. I’m saying to be open and honest with them about any subject. Let them know why you feel a certain way about things. It is love that constrains us to do right, not fear. Let their love for you be so strong that they would dread disappointing you in your absence,
In the words of a Parenting Coach, Vivian Okoye, we are not raising kids to shield them from the decadence in our world! It is our duty as parents to equip them to thrive in the face of all the evil and hopefully, they will be the light in all the darkness.
Times are tough, and you have limited time as parents with the children under your roof. Use your limited time to create a lifelong impression on your children. Let’s be intentional about how we raise them.
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This article was first published on 23rd April 2022