Parenting with Style: Why You Might Clash with Your Child Rutland VT
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Parenting with Style: Why You Might Clash with Your Child
Parent & Child
|Parenting with Style: Why You Might Clash with Your Child |
By Caron B. Goode
Every morning, six-year-old Josh and his mom clash. A daydreamer by nature, Josh moves through life at a slower pace than his task-oriented mom. This is most evident in the morning when meandering Josh and his highly organized mother are trying to get out the door. This daily struggle highlights their obviously different personal styles.
Personal style is a natural predisposition toward time, stress, people, tasks, and situations. It is also the foundation on which preferences, reactions, and life values are built. When parents understand their child s personal style, communication and interaction become easier and more effective. This can be instrumental in helping parents achieve the behavioral results they want, and the harmony they desire.
What is Your Child's Personal Style?
According to Terry Anderson, Ph.D., Canada Research Chair in Distance Education at Athabasca University, there are four personal style categories: behavioral, cognitive, interpersonal, and affective. There are bits and pieces of each personal style in all of us, but individuals typically exhibit one that is dominant.
Behavioral-style children need freedom and self-expression. They are often bold, willful, productive, competitive, unemotional, and self-reliant. These children rarely talk about their problems or emotions. Instead they set goals, and take action. They like to be leaders, and enjoy being recognized for their achievements. Behavioral-style children are independent learners, and prefer real-life examples rather than abstract thinking or discussion. They enjoy structure, dislike control, and will question authority if their parents appear incongruent.
Parenting Behavioral-Style Children
Parents of behavioral-style children should engage a no-blame, non-emotional approach to communication. Since these children are typically unemotional, demonstrative parents shouldn t take it personally if their child doesn t respond in kind. These children appreciate fairness, logic, honesty, and directness. When assigning tasks to your behavioral-style child, set the structure, but do not stand over or try to direct his or her activities. You should give your child the task, state the benefit or reward, and ask when and how it will be completed.
Cognitive-style children need affirmation and understanding. They are deep thinkers who like to thoroughly examine issues. They value intimacy, respect, and good relationships. Cognitive-style children take instruction well, and admire expertise and knowledge. They are organized, enjoy working with data, and can be perfectionists. Because their talents often lie in numbers and mathematics, they may spend hours at their computers.
Parenting Cognitive-Style Children
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