One of the critical determinants in being a good parent is the ability to reflect upon your childhood and learn from it. Even if you did not feel safe and happy during your childhood, reflecting on it and understanding the reasons why you didn’t can help you not repeat the mistakes that were made by your parents.
Statistically, only 50-55% of adults had a secure attachment with their parent(s). The rest had an avoidant/dismissive, ambivalent/preoccupied, or disorganized attachment.
It is worthwhile to remember your childhood and learn from what you remember by making the inner shift to create a relationship that promotes unconditional love, safety, happiness, confidence, healthy self-esteem, compassion, responsibility, and cooperation. I believe that we all can learn to be skillful, strong and nurturing parents, regardless of the way we were raised.
Here are some parenting skills to learn:
1. Not having power struggles – the parent is “captain of the ship.”
2. Being empathetic – the parent is putting himself in the child’s shoes.
3. Being mindful – the parent recognizes his own emotions, especially in a tough situation.
4. Staying calm – the parent is taking the time to manage emotional reactivity.
5. Nourishing the roots of attachment – proximity, sameness, belonging/loyalty, significance.