We all want our children to be little darlings and to be respectful to everyone. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Most children go through a time where they are testing their limits and can be quite disrespectful. Also, respect is a learned skill, it is not one that is assumed or just happens naturally. Children watch you and do as you do. Children also don’t have same filters that you do, so if you are disrespectful to each other in the house, even if it is only in fun, the child will repeat that out in the real world. Here are a few things that we have learned that might help you teach your child to have more respect.
Explain manners and respect
If your child does not understand what manners are, or what respect is, then how do you expect them to behave? You need to teach your child manners. It can even be a game, where you show them the manners from many years ago and they can play at being that way. Fake it until you make it also works well with a child.
Cotillion and etiquette.
Although it may seem very old-fashioned, sending your child to cotillion and etiquette classes can be a great benefit. These classes teach your child the basics of dance and how to act in social situations. They are learning it with other children, so there is less embarrassment and they can enjoy it while learning at the same time. Find a cotillion that focuses more on etiquette than the dance, and you will be well covered.
Sports and other classes
Another good way to teach your child about social interaction and respectful behavior is to enroll them in classes. Martial arts classes are well known for teaching discipline and respect, but most sports are similar. We have seen many a student enter martial arts as an unruly child and over time completely change into somebody that knows how to behave when it is appropriate.
Tell them the benefits
Just telling a child to behave and be more respectful will only go so far. Explain to them the benefits of being so. If they see it in their own self-interest, they have much more of a desire to do it. Just like you, as an adult, if you see a benefit for doing something you have a much better chance of doing it.
Set a good example
As they say, the apple does not fall far from the tree. Children mimic what they see. So, if you are respectful, there is a much higher chance of them being respectful as well. If you treat them with respect, then there is a much higher chance that you will be treated with respect.
Do not yell at them
If your child is not being respectful, don’t get into a shouting match. Just imagine you were at work and the boss is yelling at you, how respectful does that feel? Does it actually make you want to change, or do you just think that the boss is a jerk. Think of that next time you’re yelling at your child.
Children are always going to test you, and that is just part of life. Being disrespectful to you is one thing, but being disrespectful to others is much more serious. Make sure your child understands that this is not a small issue. Having social graces and etiquette in life can make life much easier. It can bring you advantages that you might not even realise; just being polite will take you a long way.