It’s certainly OK to run a tight ship. But if your strict, competitive, overbearing parenting style is becoming detrimental to your kids (and yourself), it’s time to make a change. Follow these tips to become a more easygoing mom.
Step 1: Realize the benefits of your parenting style
Though you might be a stern, tough mom, your personality can be beneficial to your kids, too. A strict environment (as long as it’s not excessive) can teach them about the value of discipline, goals and structure.
Step 2: Slow down
If you and your kids are overscheduled, take a break and slow down a bit. You don’t need to sign your kids up for every extracurricular activity, club and sport. Instead, spend more time together as a family doing simple things — watching movies, playing board games and going for walks. You’ll find that your life (and theirs) is a lot more enjoyable when you slow down and have an opportunity to bond. Rid your life of the activities and events that aren’t really important to you and your family.
Step 3: Don’t sweat the small stuff
Kids are messy and they make plenty of mistakes. Don’t waste your energy on the small stuff that doesn’t really make a difference in the big picture. Yelling or stressing out over one missed curfew, dirty clothes being left on the floor or other mistakes isn’t going to benefit you or your child.
Step 4: Have more trust
In order to be more easygoing, you have to have more trust and confidence in your kids. You have raised them with a good set of values, so it’s OK to extend the leash a little bit — even if they do make mistakes.
Step 5: Take baby steps
Don’t take things to the opposite extreme and become an extremely permissive parent. The worst thing you can do is thrust your kids from a very structured household into an environment without rules and boundaries. Becoming an easygoing parent doesn’t mean you abandon your family values or remove all goals and expectations for your child.
Step 6: Teach about compassion
Type A parents have a tendency to teach their kids about goals and ambition, sometimes forgetting about things like compassion and gratitude. Volunteer as a family and allow your children the opportunity to help those less fortunate.