Give your child the essence of true freedom
Created by Cheena M Gujral Updated on Dec 06, 2019
Some of us are still under the shadow of not being able to differentiate between Republic Day and Independence Day. For this generation, Independence Day simply means a holiday where one can go watch a movie, catch a sale at the mall or go eat a pizza with special offers or discounts.
What is Independence?
Wikipedia defines independence as “…a state of non-dependence or self-rule…” Surely we are no more interpreting it in the context of foreign rule – but how about making this a day to truly reflect, act on and create true independence for our children by celebrating this day as a benchmark for them to be independent as individuals. Encouraging our children to be independent in thought and action can only take effect if we ourselves understand what independence truly means – as adults, as individuals, and as parents. This calls for a serious amount of self-reflection and the willingness to let go of certain thoughts and beliefs that we hold. But then comes another burning question – how much is too much and how much is enough?
Children and Freedom or Independence – How Much Is Good Enough
Children and freedom can be a tricky situation, especially in today’s scenario, when more and more children are seeking freedom to do things on their own. So how do you handle this? As a parent, how much freedom is good for your child is something you should be able to decide depending on how responsible your child is. Also before you give freedom to your child ensure that you make him or she understands that
- Freedom comes with responsibility and hence he or she needs to be responsible for his or her actions
- He or she needs to be grounded to the reality and don’t go overboard with freedom
How Can You Encourage Your Child To Be More Independent
Here are four ways in which we can encourage our children to be more independent
- Self-rule: Allowing our children the freedom of doing what they like and want to work for. Whether it is taking pictures or painting, dancing or even acting. Every child is not born to be a surgeon or scientist, set them free. You may have certain hopes and dreams for your child, and if their own aspirations align with yours, then that’s great! But if they don’t, you must allow them space to blossom and be who they believe in
- State of independence: Allow your child to attain self- independence by making their own decisions. As a parent, it is your duty to give them the opportunity or chance to make their own choices. Whether it is choosing their friends(don't force them to be friends with your friend's children!), or their choice of attire for the day (It is not necessary that they like their parent's style of dressing always) – they must be allowed to make their own choices
- Freedom of thought: On this day introduce them to the importance of thinking and forming their own opinions. If their own beliefs are different from the masses – so what? It is not necessary or healthy to follow the flock always. However, you need to empower them by helping them feel secure and truly believe in themselves – which means total acceptance and no judgment!
- Freedom of expression: Encourage them to speak for wrong and right, all with equal grace and respect. They can start with expressing love towards their family or the goodness of friends or even appreciating mum's food. There should also be room for saying no to children who misbehave! It is important you help your child develop a strong voice of their own – however, they are still children and at times you would need to show them who’s the boss! This is a fine balance, and reaching it will take some trial and error, so give it time and patience
This independence day we all must try to infuse love and happiness in our children’s life, following the mantra of being independent; in the ways mentioned above. Remember - small steps can bring a major change in personality and perspective. Happy Independence Day to us all!
Did you find Cheena’s blog on independence useful? How do empower your child and allow them to express their independence? Do leave your comments…. We love hearing from you!
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