It is a well established fact that the early years (0-8yrs) are the formative years for a child's personality development, and parents can play a key role in nurturing their child's potentials.
Here are some of the steps that parents can follow in this direction, as counselled by Mukta Vasal, Consultant Child Psychologist:
* Avoid Authoritarian/ Directive Parenting Style It is often seen that parents try to impose their 'will' upon children, so as to shape children's personality and character. Parents do it out of concern as they want best for their kids. But, they need to understand that structured home environment and directive parent-child relationship /interaction adversely affects the child's free flow of thoughts, which in turn hampers their creativity. Thus, the need is to respect children's individuality and at the same time guide them in the right direction.
* Avoid Comparisons Parents tend to make comparisons among siblings and with the child's peer group. Though a parent does it expecting that the child will be motivated to follow the footsteps of the other kid(s), but, unfortunately, the child starts thinking that s/he is being 'criticized.' This not only reduces child's self esteem but also becomes one of the main reasons for sibling rivalry. Thus, it is important that parents should avoid making comparisons as each child is 'unique.'
* Spend Quality, as well as Quantity time with Children: Children not only need 'quality time' but also need 'quantity time' of their parents. Children are not aware of the concept of quality or quantity time. What they want (and rightly deserve) is to spend lot of time with their parents, especially with their mother. It gives children a sense of security and at the same time enhances their emotional development, which plays a pivotal role in shaping child's personality.