A Positive Attitude

A positive attitude can lead to better parenting – and it’s something one should look for in child care providers, too.  In life, two people can look at the same glass: while one sees it as “half full,” the other sees it as “half empty.” It’s just a matter of positive versus negative attitude.  An attitude is something we can work on changing – and something that trained childcare professionals understand very well.  If I perceive that my attitudes on life are more negative than positive, I can deliberately make a greater effort to focus on the positive aspects of each situation.  Here are three good reasons for seeking to develop and maintain a more positive attitude as a parent – and to seek out the same quality with child care services and child care programs:

My attitude helps to determine how I perceive my child’s behavior.  For example, if my almost two-year-old has recently developed the habit of saying “No!”  I can perceive that as either (a) “My child is developing a healthy sense of autonomy and independence” (a positive attitude) or (b) “My child is becoming a little monster” (a negative attitude).

My attitude helps to determine how I will react.  If I perceive my child’s behavior in a positive manner, I’m more likely to react to his behavior in a positive way.  For example, if I show him more love and affection, I reassure him that it’s natural and okay for him to want to demonstrate greater independence as he gets older.  On the other hand, if I perceive the same behavior in a negative manner, I’m more likely to respond in a negative way. (You’ll lose your story time if you keep doing that!”)

 

My attitude will affect how my child will respond.  When a parent or preschool care provider can exhibit a positive attitude toward a child’s behavior, the child will more likely develop a positive attitude toward life.  Giving him the reassurance that he is loved unconditionally will help him to be more in tune with his world and, therefore, behave more positively.  On the contrary, when a child feels threatened and unloved because of a care giver’s negative attitude, he is more likely to develop negative feelings toward himself, which ultimately will lead to worse behavior.

It’s important to note, however, that having a positive attitude toward a child’s behavior (“I think my child is terrific”) is not the same as spoiling a child (“My child can do no wrong”).

Whereas a spoiled child will eventually exhibit misbehavior that is increasingly more demanding of parents, the child who is treated by parents with a positive yet realistic attitude will more likely develop a similar, more positive attitude.


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