PARENTHOOD | 4 Parenting Habits Parents Should Check For


One morning, my two-year-old woke up with “umm” added to his emerging vocabulary. Every answer to a question, every comment, and every request began with “umm” and by afternoon I went from giggling about how adorable this was, to silently begging God to make the “umm” fascination go away. And then lunch rolled around. While placing our orders at a takeout restaurant I heard my son not only echoing me, but emphasizing my repetitive “umm”. I blushed when I realized that the new—and exhausting—habit he developed, was actually an old habit of mine! 

This made me think about how much of an influence our habits and practices have on our children, and how easily we go without realizing that we’re source. The famous parenting scripture Proverbs 22:6 teaches us that we should, “train a child in the way he should go”, but what if we also trained ourselves in a way that our children should go? 

Sometimes we find ourselves disappointed or bothered by our children’s behavior, that’s a fact. But imagine that the little twinkling eyes staring up at us, were itty bitty round mirrors reflecting ourselves. This serves as a good reason to comb through your daily practices and habits, every once in a while, to make sure that you aren’t just teaching the example, but being the example as well. 

1. Check your communication: How you speak to your child and peers will ultimately reflect in how your child communicates with their peers, and eventually their children. So make sure that your words are saturated with love, respect, and encouragement. 

2. Check your love: You can’t blame your child for being brazen or aggressive if you aren’t demonstrating how to be affectionate. Shower them with hugs, kisses, pats on the back, and plenty of smiles. These expressions also play an important part in developing self-esteem, so go ahead and over dose! 

3. Check your wellness: The same idea goes for living a healthy lifestyle. You can’t question why your child isn’t interested in vegetables, when she hasn’t at least seen you snack on a carrot or gobble a green. And you can’t complain that he’s a couch potato, lazy, or too into video games when physical activity is absent from your daily to weekly routine. 

4. Check your faith: It just might take more than dropping your child off at Sunday school to get them enthused about fellowship and church, so show them your excitement for God. Talk about Him casually, pray together as a family, or allow them to see you pray and praise.

Although there are some things that we tend to teach our children without even realizing—like that habitual “umm”—and although the key is to pay close attention to our habits, our ultimate goal should be to reflect God. If we remain a reflection of God, and our children remain a reflection of us, then the battle is already won!

Happy Parenting 



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