Raising a strong-willed child can be a challenge even for the bravest of hearts. Temper tantrums in the grocery store can lead to a bloodcurdling scream while being pulled across the parking lot to the safety of the car, only to have the police at your doorstep a few minutes later, is definitely a challenge.
Strong-willed children know what they want and want it now. If they do not get what they want, be prepared for anything to happen. When you are in that moment of time in your child’s life, it may seem like things will never change, but take heart. They do, and they change for the better, believe me. There are benefits to raising a strong-willed child, after all.
What are the benefits of raising a strong-willed child?
Raising a strong-willed child may be difficult at the time, but there are benefits to their behavior. Strong-willed children can:
- Stand firm in a belief without backing down. This is great for those years when peer pressure can have a toll on your child, but not so with the strong-willed child. They do not give in to things they do not believe in or want to be a part of.
- Be self-motivated and determined. They want to learn things on their own, and so they are motivated to do just that and do it until they have it all figured out.
- Show discernment when looking for companions, whether they are friends or possible dates or future wives. They have high standards of how their friends and members of the opposite sex should be, and they do not settle for anything less than that standard.
- Be positive leaders. People admire those who do not back down on their morals and values, and they often want to follow those leaders.
- Voice their own opinions. They do not fear the response they might receive.
- Become highly successful adults. Studies have shown that kids that are strong-willed often grow up to be highly successful because of the attributes mentioned here that they possess.
Read also – The Most Harmful and Helpful Types of Parenting
How to parent a strong-willed child
Strong-willed children do not automatically show these benefits, so you need to direct them in the right direction. Here are a few tips to help you parent your strong-willed child with little to no stress at all.
1. Stay consistent
When you discipline your child, you must be consistent and not vary in your types of discipline. Once you find the right discipline for your child, you need to stay firm just like they do.
2. Give them options
When they want to do something you disagree with, give them a choice. For example, they want to eat goodies before dinner. Give them two choices of what that might look like. Maybe it could be yogurt or peanut butter and apples. Guide them in making good choices by providing those options from which they can choose.
3. Do not back down even when it might save some embarrassment
Remember the situation at the grocery store I mentioned in the introduction? That was a true story that I went through while parenting my child. He was told he could not do something he wanted to do, and so he acted out.
As embarrassing as it was, I did not back down despite the phone call someone made to the police. I was not hurting him in anyway. In fact, I was teaching him that his behavior was inappropriate no matter what.
Know that when you guide and direct your strong-willed child properly, they will develop characteristics that are beneficial to their growing up into productive and successful adults. Are you a mom of a strong-willed child? Please share your experiences with us.