Do you have that one child that always seems to be getting under your skin?
Are you constantly in a battle of wits with your child?
Do you feel like that child always wants to test your patience?
If your answer is "Yes" to any of these questions, then that may be a good sign.
When we observe the characters of great leaders, we are often confronted with a person who has a 'die-hard' attitude. That your child that seems to be frustrating all your parenting techniques, is a child on her way to greatness - if you can only help her to channel her energies in the right direction.
We say a child is 'strong willed' when that child is determined to have his way. Such children are usually fastidious in their decisions; nothing can seem to make them budge once their minds are made up. For instance, a strong willed child is that child that won't eat once he has decided that he doesn't want to, no matter what you may try.
That's because a strong willed child will keep moving in a certain direction regardless of the obstacles along their way. The very thing that challenges you so much, is the greatest asset and strength of that child.
Raising a leader is not easy because a leader will often like to do things their way, often telling others how to live their lives. So, translate that to a strong willed child! Not every action of your child is aimed at defiance, rebellion or misbehavior. Sometimes, if you can trace that character trait in your child to one of the parents who is also strong willed - maybe it's even you - then that will give you a better perspective on your child's behavior.
As parents, we are often told, spank that child into submission! What if you have spanked and spanked, and your child won't just comply? What else will you do?
Develop a stronger will than your child's: As a parent, you need to develop a stronger will than your own child. If you're not naturally strong-willed, then you have to develop one, or else your child will play on your weakness, and keep acting out in a selfish way, not caring about the feelings of others.
Teach your child by setting limits: Let your child know that you're open to discussion if there's an issue at hand, but you will only dialogue if they are graceful in their manner of approach. This will help your child to realize that they need to consider others in their decisions as well. Teach your child to obey first, then dialogue after obeying.
Keep calm: This is not so easy when your child has that defiant look on his face, is it? But keeping calm gives you a sense of control, and passes a clear message to your child that you're in charge.
State your expectations clearly: You are likely to get results when you can let your child know in clear terms what you want done. Don't forget you may need to repeat yourself too!
Be consistent in your approach: Being consistent passes a strong message to your child that you mean business. It won't do for you to take one approach today and another tomorrow. Kids will keep testing your boundaries when they can sense that you won't be consistent.
Don't sweat the small stuff: Learn to choose your battles wisely - you don't need to make an issue out of every little matter. Save your energy for important stuff. Let your child have her way on stuff that aren't major. That way she can feel a sense of being in charge, that's what the battle is about anyway.Let your child feel secure in your love: Your parenting approach as a Mom should be such that your child is secure in the fact that they are loved by you. When your child sees your heart of love, a strong willed child can be transformed into a loving leader.
Raising a strong willed child can be quite tasking and challenging, but let your motivation and consolation be the bigger picture- you're raising a leader.