MOMS, LET GO OF PERFECT SITUATION
The amount of time parents spend with their children has little impact on kids’ success. But when parents are stressed, sleep deprived, guilty, or anxious, it negatively impacts their children. Sometimes mothers hold themselves to an unattainable standard and taking on the lion’s share of child care themselves.
SOLUTION Let go of the pressure to be a “perfect” mother and the guilt that you don’t spend enough time with your kids, its a part of life. This is a collaborative approach to parenting, avoid the urge to micromanage your partner when he does things his own way.
Kids’ beliefs about themselves and others are shaped by the world around them. Gender stereotypes are a result of what everyone tells kids as truth. Traditional girls’ toys focus on appearance and caretaking, while boys’ toys focus on competition and spatial skills. The media has its way of taking control, and in much of that media, women are underrepresented or sexualized. Men are portrayed as competitive and aggressive.
SOLUTION Have your kids play with a variety of toys so they develop a range of cognitive and social skills. Fun does not have a gender. Be thoughtful about what your kids read and watch and talk openly with them about the messages the media sends about women and men. Your are the most powerful force of influence.
Girls are often discouraged from being leaders, they are often labeled at an early age as more of an ‘aide’. Parents place a higher value on leadership for boys than for girls. Girls are often labeled “bossy” or “know-it-all” when they speak up or take the lead. These factors take a toll on a girls’ self confidence. Between elementary school and high school, girls’ self-esteem drops 3.5 times more than boys’.
SOLUTION Celebrate your daughter’s efforts to lead. Help her set goals and break them down into small, achievable steps. Have your daughter reach outside of her comfort zone. Just as she practices soccer or piano, she can practice small acts of assertiveness like ordering at restaurants or shaking hands when she meets new people. Sports and extra activities will help her learn to collaborate speak up, and mess up.