One sensitive issue parents contend with is their child's temperament. Understanding children's inborn traits is a key to better parenting and happier children, especially in the development years.
Before my daughter was born, I imagined her to be a specific type of a good-natured child. As she grew up, I realized my always viewing her as good-natured was a pre-conceived idea I had. Her childhood moods meandered through creative, sensitive, emotional, and even defiant in the early teen years. And she was good natured about most events in her life.
Understanding her temperament enabled me not to blame my self for her situations. Instead, I learned strategies to deal with difficult circumstances or conditions. One point of discipline I followed was to diffuse challenging situation so as not to escalate into major conflicts that might cause harm.
Temperament information helps you see how your child learns, responds, reacts, and behaves. Through the earlier years of development, you see reactions begin to form into a pattern of values, needs, and fears:
+++++ One child needs closeness, touch, and assurance from parents.Thus, he values following his parents, climbing in their laps and being cuddled or held.
His fear of not having the needs met, or when his needs are not met, he feels, hurt, lost, or angry.
+++++ Another youngster values being by herself--independence.
She plays with her dolls and likes doing so by herself.
Her need to learn through trial an error means that she pushes parents away sometimes with the familiar, "I can do it."
+++++ Children, who readily and quickly shift, show adaptive temperaments. They learn more by doing and practicing.
+++++ Children, who have slower-to-warm temperaments, learn by watching and rehearsing internally.
+++++ Children's challenging temperaments cause us to regroup:
- Ask what is the child going through?
- Is this a temperament trait or learned behavior that needs to change?
- Are the child's needs being met?
- Are fears causing issues?
- Has the child's value been diminished in any way?
This child views the world through optimistic eyes, adapts quickly and maintains positivity well. He is a natural learner, eats and sleeps regularly (has no trouble sleeping), is pleasant and cheerful, and displays a low-intensity mood.
Because this child feels deeply in certain situations, he has few significant emotional outbursts. This type comprises about 40% of all people.
The Feisty/Difficult/Spirited group of children comprises about 10% of the population. This grouping is the opposite of the flexible children. Feisty children are slow to adapt to the routines: napping, eating, homework, quiet time. Moreover, bowel movements are not regular. The spirited child has preferences for parents to discover and manage. On the hand, the child shows his mastery for specific tasks.
The feisty child has tantrums, is fussy, and can be unpleasant in disagreements. With high energy, this child explores with intensity and can get into mischief, On the other hand, he or she is bursting with energy and explores the surrounding and people intensely.
The third general temperament type is aptly called Slow-To-Warm, and 15% of the population belongs to this category. Slow to warm types are shy or highly-sensitive persons (which they sometimes are. They watch their world and usually observe on the outside of things before joining. Their internal clock is disrupted easily and shows up in irregular sleeping, feeding and other personal habits. This child seems to be always enjoying things or doing them at his own sweet pace.
The rest of the 35% of the population are combinations of several temperaments. They exhibit traits of all three temperament types and cannot be categorized into a single trait pattern. The feature they share is that they have characteristics of all three temperaments.
In all these temperament types, you will also find yours. Understanding children and their temperaments include understanding your own. Doing so will open your eyes to the many areas where you can connect to that of your children, or whether you are compatible with each other or not.
Parent coaching has all the right stuff. As a career, it offers flexibility, personal satisfaction, and unlimited earning potential. It is also one of the fastest growing home based businesses today. This makes it ideal for parents, career switchers, and retirees, but is it right for you?
Parent coaches come from all walks of life. They are teachers and therapists. They are mothers, fathers, and grandparents. They are former corporate leaders and nine-to-five refugees. They have in common an intense desire to help parents get the most out of family life.
"Coaching is solution-oriented," says seasoned parent and lifestyle coach Natalie Gahrmann. "It is not someone just guessing. It is, ´Tell me about the problem, then tell me what you are going to do about it.´ If you don´t know what to do about it, I can help you with that, but don´t tell me there is nothing you can do about it and you are stuck here as a victim."
Characteristics of a Good Parent Coaching
A successful coach/client partnership is built from the ground up and is essential to the entire coaching process. To help parents reach their personal or family goals, a coach must be able to develop a trusting and respectful relationship with the client. It is at this point that she can begin to chip away at the parent´s insecurity, which gives parents the confidence to handle problems and reach their desired goals.
"A parent coach is someone who partners with you to help you remove all your fears of parenting," says veteran parent coach Peggy Alvarado. "They help you gain the confidence to raise the type of children you always wished them to be."
Alvarado, a former software technology executive, believes that even though each person has a unique coaching style, there are certain characteristics all good parent coaches share. They include:
Inquisitiveness. Parent coaches must have an inquisitive nature. They need to be able to ask thoughtful questions that require action-oriented answers. "It isn´t just about listening," says Gahrmann. "It is also about being provocative and helping people get to a new place. I help people find their solutions, and together we come up with the action to do that."
Objectivity. Parent coaching is about maintaining objectivity when it comes to clients and their situations. Coaches are not friends who are called upon for unconditional support. They are people who you enlist to help you define your goals and help you devise an action plan to meet those goals. They are someone you depend on to see all the picture and support you in the decisions you make.
Assertiveness. Parent coaches must be assertive enough to challenge their clients and ask questions that demand answers. "There is a synergy that happens between people that helps come up with other solutions," says Gahrmann. "Some people say I can do A or B, and they are often opposite ends of the spectrum, but if I say well what if you do this, the next thing you know, they have ten choices in front of them."
Openness. Having an open nature is one of the greatest attributes any parent coach can have. Coaches are open-minded in regards to people, situations, and themselves. Coaches must be open to all people in all stages of life, but they also are aware of their strengths and weaknesses. They must realize that no one person can ever know everything or be the most non-judgmental or objective you can be.
Curiosity. Parent coaches are curious people and are interested in learning about their clients, their situations, and what resources and information are available to them. Coaches are continually working to find new approaches and solutions for their clients and themselves. They are always learning and interested in learning because parent coaching is a continuing education field. There are still ways to develop yourself and learn.
If you feel a calling to start a new profession as a trained and certified Parent Coach, visit parent-family coaching course page to understand how you can achieve this goal in six to nine months.
A Certified Parenting Coach is a trained professional who works with parents to solve problems, clarify goals, or find solutions to issues relating to parenting and family.
Parenting has never been easy. Among the children, their schooling, your spouse and other engagements, parenting could get complicated or overwhelming. The good news is you can make the best of parenting with the right assistance from a professional parenting coach.
A Certified Parenting Coach has completed professional training in the dynamics of coaching parents through coaching techniques, listening, as well as how to approach problem solving and structuring new situations for success. A parenting coach is not a therapist. He/she is a trained and experienced professional who uses strategy to assist parents in raising their children and maintaining balance in the family.
The bold difference between a parenting coach and a therapist is the status of parents or clients involved. Parents make a conscious and informed decision to receive assistance from a parenting coach. The aim is not to heal any broken spirits of the past, but to work together to develop more suitable parenting style, responses to daily dealings or solve problems in behavior, communication, or issues that arise.
How Does It Work?
The essence of coaching parents is to offer working solutions to families or parents experiencing some frustration. As children mature and become involved in different social circles, most parents experience frustrating times when the old rules or skills no longer work.
Most parenting problems include variations on these themes:
Parents with a short temper
Children who are disrespectful
Children who are stubborn or defiant
Lack of responsibility
Lack of discipline
Dealing with a divorce, separation or loss of a loved one
Whining or throwing tantrums, and so on
The challenges one could encounter as a parent are endless and sometimes take different forms as children grow up.
A parenting coach is a fast and effective way to manage and eliminate these issues. It all begins when you contact a certified parenting coach. Meetings or consultation can take place either through a detailed phone call conversation or a visit to your home to assess the situation.
During this time a parenting coach does two things for a parent in distress:
1. Listens effectively
The solution to every problem begins when shared. Being able to share your challenges with a kind and compassionate listener is the first step to getting rid of the problem. At this time the parent will feel relieved and supported.
2. Offer personalized solutions
After receiving a full brief of the issue, the parenting coach will be able to identify the problem and brainstorm possible solutions and strategies. This process also involves a series of steps.
First, the parenting coach will ask all necessary questions and provide insight into causes, effects and characteristics of the issue.
The next step can be to equip you with new information that will give you a deeper understanding and view a different perspective on the problem. Now, the once confused parents can begin to see new possibilities and solutions.
Finally, both parent and parenting coach collaborate to come up with ideas and strategies that are peculiar to your family and parenting issue.
Typical parent coaching methodology pays particular attention to helping parents regain confidence and authority in their parenting skills.
Within a few weeks of implementing new strategies and suggestions from your parenting coach, you will see some positive results.
In the end, parents become better equipped to perform their role, while children become accountable and responsible for their actions and life choices.
Benefits of a parenting coach
It is an effective way to seek assistance and discuss your parenting problems within a professional framework that eliminates the stigma of psychotherapy.
It is the best option for working or busy parents
It is an opportunity to broaden your knowledge of parenting.
It is an excellent career choice.
Why Does It Work?
Parent coaching is useful because its approach is constructive and personalized.
Remember that parent coaching is a team effort. A parent must be open to discussing the full length of the issue and trying new ideas.
Who Needs a Parenting Coach?
Some think that perhaps this option of a parenting coach is for parents who are failing in their role, and this is untrue.
Parent coaching is a choice made my parents, who know how vital their roles are in the lives of their children. It is for parents who are bold enough to seek help when they meet a roadblock in parenting.
It is for those who desire a focused and strategic means to solve various problems that parents often encounter with their child.
Who Can Be a Parenting Coach?
The thing about parenting is that it belongs to everyone. Professionals who feel called to serve parents and families respond to their calling. Parenting coaches share certain traits like enjoying working with children, youth and parents, crafting conversations, finding answers, and discussing discipline solutions
Also, if you are a parent or a child care provider, you can equally learn how to be more effective in your role.I have always believed in the full benefits of the profession of a parenting coach. The process of learning, practicing or consulting with a parenting coach presents equal opportunities for each of us to gain something profound easily.
Understanding your child is the most important topic that you could learn as a parent. This knowledge helps you to become active in guiding and nurturing your children as they grow and mature. Why? Your child has unique personality traits that remain consistent throughout life.
One way you can understand your child is by observing them as they sleep, eat, or play. Look for the consistent traits such as
- shyness versus being outgoing
- focused versus distracted
- cheerful versus stressed
- playful versus observant
- fussy versus more accepting
- Which activities do they like best?
- How do they negotiate change?
- Do they adapt easily to new situations?
- Do they need time to explore new environments or activities?
These average characteristics of a child demonstrate particular interests, choices, and behaviors according to his or her inborn temperament. This is the key to understanding your child.
Create space and time in your busy day to talk, but also listen, to your kids as this is crucial to gaining information about how they think and what they understand. In the case of young children, they require less verbal language and more facial expression and body language to understand their thoughts and feelings. Asking them questions will allow them to share their feelings and identify emotional patterns.
For example, ask them what they built with their blocks today rather than asking them what they did in school. What game did they play with a friend? Learn how they used their imagination to create and enjoy. What was their favorite part of the day?
Another way of understanding your child is by looking at their environment to learn about certain behaviors that you have observed. Special people play crucial roles in your child's life--family members, grandparents, child care providers, friends, and teachers. Of course, the home environment is the primary influence and can play a crucial role in your child’s behavior. For example, does your child show aggressiveness towards other kids at school? Find out all the triggers for their aggressive behavior.
Possibilities include their association with another child who is aggressive as well. The environment at home is another possible source for such conduct. Have there been conflicts and arguments at home lately? What about in the community? These are some angles to consider when trying to find the reason behind your child's aggressive behavior.
Also, you can learn about your child by observing other children belonging to the similar age group. You can check out books, browse the Internet and take an online class or two. Watching your child grow up may bring back your memories of going through the same growth stages. However, through each stage, the speed of development is a personal thing.
By understanding your child's development, you will be able to provide them with learning opportunities to support their development and prepare them for the next growth stage. At the same time, you as a parent would be able to set expectations and limits that are acceptable to your child.
Being a conscious Heartwise® parent is hard especially in this day and age when demands of work, financial commitments, and family tug on every parent. Quality time is hard to get when you are trying to juggle your time between corporate life and parenthood. Understanding your child’s temperament and traits are effective ways of becoming successful in the art of parenting.