A lot of people been asking me about how we’re raising our kid. I had no cohesive answer to this question, besides “I stopped working like crazy, to spend as much time as I can with my kid” as my main strategy.
I’d love to expand on this answer as much as I could, in hopes that it will make at least one kid more happier in his life. Some evidence and feedback suggests that we might be on a right path so far.
I grew up with a lot of personal issues that correlate heavily with my dad – he left us quite early, but even when he was around – it didn’t felt that he was present as much. He basically ignored me for first 3 years of my life. This is also the reason, I’m addressing this post to all potential or current dads.
My strategy was a complete opposite from my dads. I had an opportunity to quit my job and have a small retirement for 3-4 years. So after reading “Kindergarten is Too Late!” by Masaru Ibuka – I decided to invest this time into kid’s early development.
During first 3 years rate of development is staggering, I still can’t believe my eyes how fast kid develops. It’s important to notice, that goal is not to raise a prodigy – so don’t force him into things, rather ignite his interest. Try to build out a strong character and introduce him to as much activities as possible.
- Be around your kid – hold him, hug him, talk with him as much as you can.
- People that surround your kid during those years affect him. So avoid baby-sitters at all costs, but leave him as much as you can with his grandparents and other relatives.
- From his first days, baby has a fully developed ears and he can distinguish bright colors around him. So make sure to introduce him to variety of sounds and places – don’t stay home.
- Kids can swim, before they are able to walk. They can play and appreciate music. Get him on he’s feet and walking as fast as possible, because walking directly contributes to brain development.
- Emphasize his achievements: one success stimulates another. Build out creativity and skills. Give a pencil as soon as soon as possible. Let him try many different materials and texture. Do not buy so many toys.
- It’s wrong to shield a kid from anything dangerous, teach him to handle them: first under parents supervision and then he can do it on his own.
- Turn everything into play. Make up your own games. Show him how to play alone.
- Give a chance to socialize with other people. Study foreign languages and culture.
- Surround your kid with the best human creations – become his music and art curator. Don’t leave him alone with netflix or youtube – keep a close eye on media he consumes.
There are no general rules or principles that could apply to any child. So every parent should choose his own style based of his abilities and peculiarities. Don’t insist that your wife should adopt your parenting methods.
There are parenting strategies like “non violent parenting” that suggest avoiding any form of punishment – verbal or physical. But there are situations, that require parent to press his claims and punish the kid. And this is normal! But people have tendency to notice negative things and ridicule kids too often. I suggest to turn negative situation to show your kid the right way, if he messed up – show him how to clean up after himself.
Invest heavily into harmonious relationships with your wife. Kid might not understand topics your discussing or coprehent meaning of words, but on a subconscious level he feels negative energy and it affects him.
And most important part, your kid is not your property. He’s an independent human being with a right to choose his course of life. Don’t force your ideas on him, don’t project your unrealized dreams on him! Avoid being fully consumed by your kid and have some time for your hobbies/interests.