We working moms are busy ladies! We have responsibilities in a variety of settings and expectations of us from a variety of people (including ourselves). So, wouldn’t it be nice if one thing, how to be a great mom, was made simple, so that we didn’t have to waste needless energy worrying about whether or not we’re doing that job well?
If you’ve ever wished you could find the “Cliff’s Notes” on how to be a great working mom, well, here it is!
I’ve been working with children and parents for 19 years, am a mother of 2 and am a Stress-Free Parenting Coach to Working Moms, so I think it’s safe to say that these nine parenting tips are the most simple and effective ones around. You can adopt them right away and see results instantly. If you implement these tips, you’ll feel better about being a working mom and in turn will have a huge impact on your child’s life.
Parenting Tip #1 – Always Say You’re Sorry
You will make mistakes and it’s okay, just be sure apologize. Your child learns this skill from you. They need to learn that when one makes a mistake, the way to make things right is to accept responsibility and apologize.
Even if it was your child who misbehaved, if you handled the situation poorly, apologize.
Parenting Tip #2 – Listening and Coaching is Far More Effective than Giving Advice
Get into this habit early because giving advice often leads children to tune you out. You are doing your children a disservice if you don’t teach them how to solve their own problems. Very few people like to be told what to do. Children, and especially teens are no different. Isn’t it better to be a sounding board and guide someone to make the right choice for their life? That’s what great coaches do.
A few good phrases to use are:
What do you think is the best way to handle this/solve this/make this right?
Have you ever thought of doing/trying __________?” Then listen.
You can empathize then say: “Yes, I can understand. I have felt that way too, particularly when ____________.” Then listen.
Parenting Tip #3 – It’s the Simple Things that Make the Biggest Difference
You don’t have to do anything elaborate to create memories for your children. You will be amazed at the impact of doing simple little things for or with your children. My most heartwarming memory is of my mother and I watching a certain TV show together while eating oranges. This happened everyday at the same time, and she always cut the oranges in the same way. Nothing special, but it’s one of my most fond memories from my childhood.
Parenting Tip #4 – Be the Unique Mom You Are
Working Moms spend way too much time comparing themselves to other mothers, wishing they were more organized, or could cook better, or could do crafts better, etc. But what you don’t realize is that your children are attached to the unique mom that you are.
My son loves the “airplane” rides I give him (I put my feet on his tummy and lift him up singing a silly song) When I was pregnant with my daughter and couldn’t do this anymore, he waited 9 months and then some until I could give him an airplane ride again! I don’t enjoy playing with toys alongside him, but this is what I’m good at.
Parenting Tip #5 – Let Your Children’s Misbehavior Tell You What’s Going on Inside of Them
Children misbehave for a reason. It’s not because they are bad kids. Your kids are trying to communicate something to you. Your child could be angry, hungry or tired. She could be needing your attention. He could be having a hard time verbalizing his feelings. Maybe he may want more independence. Or, he may be wanting more limits and boundaries from you.
There are so many things that could be going on inside your child. Seek to get inside your child’s inner world before you yell or become frustrated with them.
Parenting Tip #6 – Walk & Talk Your Family Values and Beliefs
Many working moms say they know what their family values are, or what their beliefs are, but do your kids know what they are? Are you truly walking your talk? If you say you value kindness or health, does your life reflect that? If you say, “We don’t yell, we speak politely to each other”, do you speak politely to your child and spouse? Talk is cheap, but modeling is powerful and makes permanent.
Parenting Tip #7 – Work on Yourself before Your Work on Your Children
Is it easy to point out areas for growth in your children? Slow down and take a look at yourself first. Could you be parenting differently or more effectively to correct these problems? Do you make time to do things that re-energize and re-vitalize yourself? These little human beings that we are shaping are watching what we DO.
I always say that “A Happy Mom Makes a Happy Family”. So, before we discipline our kids we too need to consider how we can grow as parents and people ourselves.
Parenting Tip #8 – Let Natural Consequences Be Your Children’s Teacher
As hard as it can be to let our children fall down and deal with the consequences of their choices, natural consequences are often their greatest teachers. Let your child be upset when their toy is taken away because they’re not using it safely. Don’t remind your child to take her lunch; she will remember when she is hungry at school. If you overly protect your children when they are young, they will be in for a rude awakening as adults in the real world.
Parenting Tip #9 – Don’t Lose Yourself in Motherhood
You were a woman before you became a mom. And that woman had interests and passions that made you who you are. Do you remember what those were? Or have you sacrificed all those for motherhood because you feel guilty for working so much or feel exhausted most of the time?
I have coached so many working moms who have lost themselves because they put their needs and wants LAST. Don’t do this. Be an example to your children of what it means to take care of yourself and truly know and value yourself.
These nine parenting tips will set the foundation and the right environment for all good things: close bonds, true connections, more energy, less stress, and kids who are resilient and successful as adults. No go enjoy motherhood!