Sep 26, 2022

How to Help Your Kids be More Independent

 Four children wearing rubber boots.

As we all know, raising children is challenging sometimes. But watching your children grow and leave the nest is even more difficult. However, you know that it will happen one day, and it’s better to have your child prepared for the world. As a result, you should help your kids be more independent as they grow. Kids don’t understand notions like punctuality or responsibility unless a parent teaches them. Therefore, it’s your job to ensure they enter the adult world having the information they need to become better people and make a good life for themselves. Furthermore, you won’t be there to solve their problems forever. So the sooner you teach them how to be more independent, the better it will be for them. 

Here are some tips on how you can inspire children to be more independent, one step at a time.

Give your kids responsibilities.

Your kid should be capable of performing age-appropriate home chores. For instance, they could clean the floors, wash the dishes, or fold the laundry. Also, depending on how reliable and attentive they are, you can give them more appropriate tasks. Preparing breakfast, walking the dog, or taking care of some plants can make them feel more responsible. Even young children can assist in setting the table and cleaning their rooms. Chores give a sense of responsibility to children and can increase their self-esteem as they observe how their efforts benefit their families. Furthermore, one task they do is one less job for you. As a result, you can also benefit from letting your kids work around the house for a change.

Mother and daughter working together in the kitchen.
You need to allow your kids to help around the house since they are small. It will help your kids be more independent, and it can also be fun.

Stop making your kids dependent.

It all starts with you offering to help your child get dressed, pour their water, or finish their homework. Then, even though your youngster is supposed to perform simple tasks alone, you continue to help. Soon enough, they either expect you to help them unconditionally or don't feel they can do it themselves. Yes. To a significant extent, helping our children is part of our work. We’re supposed to assist toddlers in brushing their teeth and get them to their beds when tired. Later, we're supposed to impose curfews on teenagers still learning to make reasonable choices. However, doing for children what they can do for themselves daily makes them more dependent on us. As a result, help your kids be more independent by teaching them how to do things on their own.

Involve kids in decision-making.

Kids will learn that their actions have repercussions only by trial and error. Therefore, use daily opportunities to let them make decisions that involve them or the whole family. Let them choose what to wear, what you will have for dinner, or what instrument they will learn to play. If you see they are responsible enough, you can even let them decorate their room or take part in preparing for moving day. They can help you clear the closets, pack the boxes and clean the rooms. You may also ask them to help plan some fun games for the journey to your new home. This is a good way of keeping kids entertained during a move and involving them in the decision-making.

Child wearing a Halloween costume and trick-or-treating
Allow your children to choose their own costumes for trick-or-treating this Halloween.

Let your kids make mistakes.

Allowing children to make errors may seem odd at first, but it will teach them how to succeed in life. When they make a mistake, let them know it's okay and help them figure out how to do better the next time. For instance, let them leave home without an umbrella on a rainy day. Or, let them learn that they will fail tests if they study just one day before. As difficult as it may seem to watch your child suffer, that will teach them an important lesson. Every problem is solvable if you know what to expect and understand that mistakes are not failures. We all need to make mistakes to learn how to improve in the future.

Let your kids care for each other.

Taking care of younger siblings is an excellent approach to teaching youngsters responsibility and maturity. Just look around for a babysitter. It will most likely be a teenager that has learned to be responsible, trustworthy, and compassionate by caring for their younger siblings. You can do the same with your older children by letting them care for their younger brothers and sisters. 

Of course, you will always be around the corner checking that everything is going smoothly. However, you can let your ten-year-old take care of a six-seven-year-old while you run to the market for ten minutes. Just make sure to leave the kids in a room where they are safe from any harm. For instance, you can take the advice of experts from Helix Transfer & Storage and remove some bulky furniture from the room your kids spend time in. That way, you will prevent unwanted accidents if your kids start pulling or climbing on the furnishings. You can keep the pieces in a storage unit until your children are old enough to be safe around them.

Little boy and girl walking in nature.
Siblings should take care of each other since they are young.

Let your kids socialize outside the house.

That task is especially difficult for parents because they should allow children to go on play dates and sleepovers. However, this will teach kids to be comfortable outside their comfort zone and learn how to interact with others. It's also a great time to have talks about safety, relationships with others, alternative parenting approaches, and other topics. Furthermore, it shows your kids you trust them to behave when you are not around. And if they avoid playing on their phones or watching inappropriate movies when they are not at home with you, you did a great job. It means you encouraged and inspired them to be responsible and independent, which is the best reward you can get. 

Independence is the best gift for your kids.

Allowing your children to do things for themselves does not suggest that you are a lazy or unsupportive parent. It shows that you care. And as you , how to behave, or how to take care of themselves, you also need to help your kids be more independent. It is a lesson that will guide them through life and help them overcome all obstacles. And they will have you to thank for it!

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