Your intuition and your common sense are your super powers!
Take on responsibility for what you do.
My intuition, my common sense and my ability to learn from my mistakes are my most important tools in parenting. You should try it. Start by trusting yourself. Your are a strong person and you do have instincts and probably at least some common sense. There is a reason why we have our intuition and common sense. They helped humanity to survive and evolve all throughout history. Whenever I had to deal with difficulties in life, they helped me through it.
However somehow it seems, like those important survival skills are being forgotten more and more.
We all hear, watch and even read more advice on how to parent, than anyone could ever even process. And then there is the big “Scare”. Because it is exciting and entertaining, the media reports on all those stories about what bad could possibly happen to my child – no matter how statistically unlikely it is. A whole industry has been created to raise our fears and sell us universal solutions against those fears. Are you also fed up with all these constant warnings about how you could damage your child for life if you are not following a certain parenting advice? All this “good” advice is what is making us believe we must be perfect parents and as nobody can be perfect we start to doubt ourselves.
Young parents are under too much pressure. That is how we become insecure about – even about things we would instinctively do right. All this pressure is not helping.
We have to understand that children don’t need a perfect parent. Instead, we have to accept us as the learning individuals we are. We must trust our own judgement, use our intuition and common sense and take honest responsibility for our actions. Isn’t this something we want to teach our children, too? We are the roll model. So when we act like this, our children will learn from us. When we take away the pressure and stress, it becomes much easier to trust our own judgement. Unfortunately I – like so many – had to learn that the hard way. Well, actually, I am still learning.
Because we thought professionals know best.
When my newborn son and I came home from hospital, he was actually a good sleeper at night. I breast fed him before I went to bed and then he would sleep until early morning. He was a healthy and quite big and strong newborn. Then the midwife told us: “He is to young to go for so many hours without feeding. You must wake him up every three hours and nurse him.” Young and insecure as we were, and not wanting to harm our baby in any way, we set an alarm clock and followed her advice. To make a long story short: It took us over a year to break the nightly breastfeeding habits we started because of her advice and we found out first hand, why sleep deprivation is used as torture.
The second child puts things into perspective
Isn’t it funny how the second child suddenly changes everything? With two or more kids you simply don’t have the time and energy to fuss about everything. You just instinctively deal with things when they come up and – surprise – it works out fine most the time. Needless to say, we did not wake up our newborn daughter when she slept through. We celebrated the next morning instead. And she did not starve over night.
Parenting advices change constantly
If you are a young parent, you might not have noticed yet. But sooner or later you’ll realize that “set in stone” important parenting advice changes. When my son was a baby, we were told to not feed our kid many different foods during the first year. And to only breastfeed during the first 6 months (or if that was not an option, give a bottle). Feeding a baby nut butters, bread, fish, strawberries, was supposed to make them prone to allergies later. Three years later, when our daughter was born, we were supposed to introduce as many different foods as early as possible in her live, because science had proven that this way kids are not likely to have allergies later. It was the same about sleeping: Lay babies on the back, the side, the stomach… The advice changes constantly.
Take on responsibility!
Seeing this, I realized that there is no perfect advice from the media or professionals. My child is my responsibility. I have to decide for myself how I want to parent. There is no perfect advice from others, not general solution for parenting. Every parent has to find out what is right for their family. I have to decide what’s right for me, you have to decide what’s right for you.
I want my children to become self-confident persons who, can take on responsibility and make their own decisions. I am their role model. So I have to be a responsible and self-confident parent who can make decisions. And I have to be honest to myself and see what I did good, and what mistakes I made. I have to learn form my mistakes and try again. Of course there are situations in which we all need advice. Of course we should reflect on our behavior and our decisions and learn from others. However there always comes a point where we need to take responsibility and decide what to do. Even if we get the best advice, we are the ones who will have to decide whether it is the right advice for us personally and whether we should follow it. Nature gave us three basic abilities we need to be a good responsible parent. Our children don’t need a perfect parent, but a loving parent who takes on responsibility and learns from mistakes.
Our three basic abilities for good parenting are:
- Never ending love for our child
- Intuition and common sense
- The ability to learn from our mistakes
They are our superpowers. Lets focus on that and trust ourselves.