Parenting is hard. There are few truer statements under the sky. Once we boil down all of our little quirks as parents 3 types of parenting styles appear.
Like anything in life parenting requires intentionality. Choosing a parenting style can sometimes be more stressful than actually parenting the child at times.
As parents we have a big responsibility. We are responsible for equipping a future human being for the next 70+ years of life.
I’ll give you a second to take a deep breath. Breathe in, now breathe out.
Are you kidding me! We get to help mold and shape this future human and there is no handbook, no how to wiki on this stuff worth mentioning. When you leave the hospital with your kid no one stops you!
It’s the craziest thing that sarcasm can concoct.
Joking aside it’s a big thing that you’ve been handed. How do we do our best so that we can DO our best.
What are the main parenting styles?
The three big parenting styles are authoritative, authoritarian and permissive.
Authoritative parents are firm, loving and kind. They set boundaries and expect their children to abide by them. Neither overly strict nor overly indulgent, authoritative parents strike a good balance between expectations that are too high and expectations that are too low.
Authoritarian parents are strict, unbending and inflexible. They may attempt to control every aspect of their child’s life, and do not allow the child to make choices. Authoritarian parents expect obedience without questioning.
Permissive parents are indulgent, not wanting to impose their will on their child’s developing personality. They often set no rules and have no consequences. They might cause their child to avoid even natural or logical consequences in order to save him from perceived harm, unhappiness or hurt feelings.
There are many subsets within each of these parenting styles but in general most parents fall into one of these. I personally fall into the authoritarian category even though I am trying to make the transition to authoritative.
If you’re interested in learning more I’d encourage you to dig into each style and see what appeals to you most. You’re not locking into a fixed parenting style but in my opinion it will be easier if you have something in ready to go for when the little one gets here.
Your little one is looking to you for how to act and what to be.
You are the first and most intimate role model that your child will have. The biggest thing in their life during the most formative time in their life is you.
You are the first and most intimate role model that your child will have. The biggest influencer in their tiny life during the most formative time in their life is you. Soak that in for a hot minute.
Consistency is the key in this game. You can modify your style as you go but try not to pivot on a dime. Real talk, I did that with disastrous results.
Try to make your adjustments as smooth as possible. Remember that your little one is playing catch up to the new rules and expectations that your setting for them.
They want to play the game so let them learn how to play it before you start putting them in the penalty box.
Dont be afraid to adjust but know that the longer you’re in a chosen style the more effort it will take to pivot.
At the end of the day you’ll choose the parenting style that is right for you.
No one knows what they are doing
Here’s the earnest truth about parenting. We’re all making it up as we go along. There is no one size fit all guaranteed method to raising your child. You’re going to be up late and you’re going to be tired. In those moments you’ll find a strength in you that perhaps you didn’t feel you had.
We measure what we treasure.
You’ll love your little one so much that eventually you won’t measure of how little sleep you’re getting. You’ll measure how many belly laughs they’ve had. Sooner than you think you’ll measure how many cute faces they make at 2 in the morning. Your treasure will shift and your parenting style will shift with it.
I hope this was helpful and if you would like to hear from me more please feel free to subscribe to the newsletter for posts direct to you.
I wish you the best of luck as you become a parent.
I firmly believe that books are one the best way to train your mind for learning.
Books allow us to go to different worlds, learn new skill or concepts, and to expand our minds. They are keys into the realm of possibilities that we perhaps never imagined. Reading can inspire new ideas, hopes, and new lives. If we open ourselves up to the stories and narratives that they can evoke in us.
However many of use are crunched for time during our busy lives. Whether you’re a parent, student, or entrepreneur acquiring, comprehending, and implementing knowledge is crucial.
So then let’s ask the next question how do I maximize getting the most of what I need? How can we get this important content and experiences into ourselves best?
One way is with audiobooks which are a great way to get all of that goodness that you can get from books while you’re doing other tasks. Having an audiobook at the gym or while I’m driving through traffic has been immensely beneficial to me personally.
There are several benefits that you can glean from reading and by association listening to audiobooks.
For starters, studies have shown that people that read are less likely to develop Alzheimer’s and Dementia. I don’t know about you but I’d like to be just as sharp at 80 as I am today. For my own quality of life but also so that my children and grandchildren can enjoy their time with me.
Another benefit of reading is a broader breadth of knowledge. Many people want to be specialists in a particular field. That can have benefits, no one is knocking that but there is such a thing as specializing too much.
If you only read one point of view then that all you will be able to imagine. Absorb information that looks at issues and problems from different angles.
You could be radically inspired.
Who knows reading about business services planner turned CIA asset could give you the eureka moment. Diversify your knowledge, expand your mind through imagination, get inspired!
I remember listening to an audio version of Ender’s Gameand Game of Thrones while I was at the gym. Those were hours of pumping iron that I started to look forward to since it meant that I could enjoy these stories. All while my body was improving itself.
My mind could escape into these worlds and I wasn’t a man trapped on a treadmill. I was along for the ride as Ender commanded fleets and the schemes of Game of Thrones in Westeros unfolded.
What then is the most useful thing that we can be doing right now the most? In my opinion learning how to learn is a great place to start.
For many of us we develop methods of learning while in school or even younger. However, this is a process that I believe should be done throughout your entire adult life. We should be constantly exploring, poking and prodding things that excite and fascinate us.
The ability to learn and then turn that knowledge into real world applications are two of the base abilities for success in this world. They are foundational for pursuing your goals both relationally and professionally. If you aren’t willing to learn you will only understand what you already know.
Secondly, you need to be able to do something with what you’ve learned.
Acquiring knowledge is good however acquiring it is not the end goal. The end goal is to do or make something that will make the world better. It’s not rocket science but if you’re teachable and can learn. You could become a rocket scientist or a criminal defense attorney someday. All because you had everything that we’ve been talking about. You could even become the best criminal defense lawyer in Arizona if that’s your dream, skies the limit folks!
There are a couple of different services that offer audiobooks however the most ubiquitous is Audible.com. Audible is an Amazon company that specializes in providing audiobooks to Amazon customers. Because Amazon leverages so much market publishers want to have their audiobook available on Audible. The service is pretty good and they do offer a 30 day free trial to test it out.
I would at least give them a try and see how it goes. If you like it keep listening if not just cancel and you’ve really lost nothing in the bargain.
I hope that this helped you and inspires you to be encouraged towards lifelong learning.
Together we will leave the world a brighter place than we found it.
Reading and understanding are so important as Christians now more than ever.
It is so hard to stay encouraged and inspired day to day. It’s not a new observation to state that our world has become increasingly loud and overbearing. We have our attention split so many different ways managing so many different facets of our life that it’s hard to carve out dedicated to just sit and talk with God.
We talk a lot about intentionality which makes sense our time is a finite resource and so moving towards using that resource strategically makes sense. We are intentional with our friends, we are intentional with our career, we are intentional with our health well then why wouldn’t we be intentional with our relationship with God and intentional with our spiritual health.
Here are 4 books that I have found helpful in my journey as a Christian and I really hope that they are encouraging, inspiring, and helpful for you as well.
More is a spectacular book about cultivating an intentional intimate relationship with the Holy Spirit and dispelling weirdness about prayer. More is written by Alan Kraft who has served as lead pastor of Christ Community Church since 1990 and he has a passion for helping people to experience the freedom of the gospel and the fullness of the Spirit.
Again speaking from my Catholic background I feel like Holy Spirit is the most mysterious and least understood component of the Trinity. It’s often described by people in a couple different ways but at its core I believe that it’s one of the most intimate avenues in which the Lord speaks to us. It’s like if you were on a road trip Jesus in the form of the Holy Spirit is your road trip buddy. The spirit is your companion on the road trip that is your life, sharing your experiences and pointing out rad spots along the way. Whether we allow the spirit to be the driver of that car is really another question.
Kraft gives practical structured advice on how we can better hear the spirit in our life. Whether that is hearing the spirit speak to us during prayer or when the Lord uses someone in our life to convey a message from the spirit to us More helps us to, as the author says, not be weird about prayer. Many Christians that I’ve talked to have a rocky relationship with the spirit largely in part due to overly charismatic church movements including the lie of the prosperity gospel.
Do not get me wrong spiritual gifts are biblical there is nothing wrong with them, however, there is something wrong with trying to use those gifts from a wrong heart perspective.
A part of “A praying life” is Paul Millers fervent refusal to separate your spiritual life from the rest of your daily life. Just like any relationship that we have with anyone communication is key. If we meet someone and then never talk to them ever again what would you call that? Now if you meet someone and you share your life with them and they share theirs with you and you talk intimately daily what you would call that? Which would you prefer? Miller makes a case for constant and intimate communication with Jesus Christ in everything that we do in this book.
Married life? You’re going to get in an argument so talk to Christ about that. Stressed about money? Lay that anxiety down at the feet of Jesus while you contempt what life he is calling you to. While I haven’t finished the book it has come highly recommended to me by many church leaders in our community.
Author Paul E. Miller is Executive Director of seeJesus, a global discipleship ministry which he founded in 1999 to help Christians and non-Christians alike “see Jesus.”
Gospel is an amazing book by JD Greer, a church favorite author, shows how moralism and legalism have often eclipsed the gospel even within conservative churches. Greer explains how moralism and legalism can strangle the message of Jesus Christ when we forget God’s gracious pursuit of sinners.
The book deals with many topics however the goal is attempting to reshape our heart into on the one the actively desires more of God in every aspect of our lives. The early church was possessed of a radical concept. That God loves sinners, he loves us so much that he sent his one and only son to die so that we could be reconciled back to the father’s love. Then he desired us so much that he instilled in each and every one of us the holy spirit in order to constantly point us back to the truth of God’s love.
Timothy Keller, another Christian author once wrote “You are more sinful than you know and more loved than you realize” and I believe that is true. Jesus loves us more than we hate our sins and isn’t that incredible.
Jesus on every page is a book that was very interesting as it puts forth the big picture that everything in the old testament foreshadows Jesus’s story.
Dr. David Murray is Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary. He was ordained to the ministry in 1995 and has pastored two churches in Scotland for 12 years.
As I’ve mentioned before I previously had a very academic perspective on the bible and the teaching of Jesus and this led me to consider the bible to be telling two stories instead of one grand and wonderful narrative. The old testament was one story and the new testament was the sequel taking the story in a new direction. However, Murray says that’s not true. It’s all one story with one hero in the form of Jesus.
I hope this guide was helpful in encouraging you to read more and to have a closer relationship with God.