The danger of demanding too much from children
Education is a process linked to the development of children. Education aims to promote development and maturation so that the individual reaches its maximum potential. We often seek that maximum development, we want our children to achieve their goals, we want them to achieve their goals and overcome any obstacle and, although that is good, sometimes we can fall into the danger of demanding too much from children.
It is very important to find the balance in our demands as parents, since demand too much from children It implies important risks with such negative consequences as not requiring them. It is a job that requires a lot of patience, a lot of respect, understanding and empathy.
The dangers of demanding too much from children
It is logical that we seek to give our children the opportunity to achieve their goals, but we can often confuse the opportunity with the demand. In this sense, we want them to get better grades, to excel in sports and extracurricular activities, we want them to be good friends, to know how to behave well, to be educated and obedient, to have their personality and not be influenced, etc.
In short, we want them to be happy and we demand that they be happy through multiple tasks in which they have to stand out. The happiness of children becomes an imposed obligation. And their world becomes a constant competition, in which they have to respond to the demands and reach goals, in a constant race, in order to be happy. Then we forget that they are children, we forget to listen to their heart, their needs and that their happiness is not an obligation but a desirable state.
Imagine living in constant competition, imagine that someone always expects the best of us. As a result of this:
1. The real needs are not met of the child.
2. We can get the opposite effect, and that over time the child rebels to the demands. Since the demands are often too high.
3. We create a development environment where stress is the key, and stress, oblivious to the happiness we seek. In such an environment it is easy for frustration to appear.
4. We do not respect the pace of development of the child.
How to change the demand for a boost in child development
Although demanding too much from children has dangers that we must avoid, the solution is not to leave the child without goals, without objectives, but to learn to guide the child in its path, and not to force it. Educating is a task that can become an art and knowing how to favor the path to your goals is part of this art. It is not a matter of demanding more or less, but of changing our attitude in doing so, stop demanding and start to push. We must remember that it is about favoring a process that has to be pleasant and natural, and not to force it by filling it with tension and negative emotions. As adults we must change our attitude and stop demanding to start promoting or favoring.
What are the changes in our attitude?
To change our attitude we must remember that we are adults and they are children, our effort is aimed at our attitudes.
1. Kindness and affection We must favor their development from a friendly and affectionate posture, leaving aside excessively authoritarian positions, and comments that may hurt or damage.
2. Trust. Showing confidence is the basis for achieving their goals.
3. Patience. It is important to be patient and leave your time.
4. The coherence. Know how to distinguish moments and situations. At certain times it will be necessary to ask them to make a little more effort and not others.
5. Listen actively. It's about listening not only to what they tell us, but above all what they want to tell us.
Guidelines to promote the development of children
- Start from respect. Respect for children and their development times. Children are not miniature adults and require time for their development and to achieve their goals.
- Change our point of view and stop focusing on the goals to focus on the process. Often, we think about the future of children, their future happiness, and although that is fine, we forget their present happiness.
- Listen to your heart and serve them with a heart. We often impose goals that are our desires and not theirs. If we want them to be happy we must attend to their wishes, to what makes them happy.
- Let them be deluded with that which makes them happy, do not make it an obligation.
- Show them that you love them for what they are, not because of the goals they achieve.
- Help them achieve their goals. Teach them that the effort is necessary to achieve their goals. Accompany them on the road and help them overcome obstacles, instead of pressing them, help them find solutions.
- Encourage them when they fail, Instead of scolding them and making them feel guilty, animals keep trying. Help them see what they have to change.
- Let them be children and remember that they need to play and time for them ..
Celia Rodríguez Ruiz. Clinical health psychologist. Specialist in pedagogy and child and youth psychology. Director of Educa and Learn. Author of the collection Stimulate Reading and Writing Processes.
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