As parents we tend to worry about our kids all the time. Some of our worries are well placed while others can be a bit over the top. Raising kids in a cared for environment is a good thing. However, raising children in a controlled environment where everything is laid out for the child in a specific order may result in the child not developing an independent thought process. This leads to lack of creativity and may also affect the kid’s inventiveness.
Below are a few tips that will help you to encourage an independent thought process in your kid and help the child to develop into a problem solver without your assistance:
- Exposure - The first and foremost step towards helping our child develop an independent thought process is to expose her to a variety of situations. As parents we tend to worry about a child too much and often in our desire to protect the child we will shield the kid from anything remotely negative. The world is made up of good and bad both and while it is okay to keep the child from harm, it will not do much good to shield from everything that is negative. Let the child learn to cope with negative emotions too, conquer them and learn the art of positive thinking. In the initial stages you may need to help, but with time the child will manage this process independently. Right from simple things to using the chair to reach a place high up to complicated issues like dealing with a pet’s death, all of it will teach your child something. As a parent you must help the kid to draw the positive lesson from incidences in her life.
- Talk openly- It is important to talk openly with you child so as to help him understand situations. You must discuss with you kid and have her give her point of view. Do not dismiss your kids’ ideas, no matter how bizarre but instead ask her to explain why she thinks so. Right from religious views to moral issues to even practical ones, discuss as much as you can with your kids. It is better that they hear about stuff from you and so do talk with them as often as you can and on a variety of topics.
- Teach respect for diversity – While an independent thought is beneficial, we do not want our kids to become stiff and prejudiced. In order to ensure that with their independence they also learn respect for those who may have a different opinion, we must make sure our kids understand diversity of thought. Help your child to see how different opinions exist and how each person is entitled to his/her own opinion. This respect for the diversity of choice and thought is very important for our society as a whole.
Allowing a child a safe yet exposed environment is very important. Children who grow up without a preset instructions tend to fare better in life and will often think for solutions outside the box. This creativity leads to invention and free spirit.