Seven Steps to Confident Parenting

by Jim Burns, author of Confident Parenting

Article Description: Confident Parenting advice from Jim Burns, author and Homeword radio host. Includes The A.W.E. (Affection, Warmth, and Encouragement) To-Do List for Confident Parents. 

Seven Steps to Confident Parenting
by Jim Burns
1. Overcome Negative Family Patterns
Even if you grew up in a dysfunctional family, you can be the "transitional generation." Break the chain of dysfunction by teaching your children healthy patterns.

2. Take Responsibility for Your Plan and Purpose.
Start with the Shema of the Old Testament-a centuries-old, time-tested blueprint for passing love and faithfulness from generation to generation.

3. Communicate with Affection, Warmth and Encouragement.
Radically change the atmosphere in your home with these three essentials. Instead of shame-based parenting techniques, treat your children with grace and love.

4. Find Replenishment for Overcrowded Lives.
When you are overly tired, you may become numb to what matters most in life. Take a lesson from gardening and start by "thinning" out your family's schedule. Focus on finding ways to rest, refresh, restore and enjoy recreation together.

5. Create a Grace-filled Home with Consistent Discipline.
Rules without relationship will lead to rebellion. Give your children clear moral boundaries and enough grace to feel loved and secure.

6. Bring Security and Honor to the Home through Parental Blessings.
Blessings and celebrating rites of passage are the best way to fulfill a child's longing for security and acceptance.

7. Raise Kids Who Love God and Have a Proper Love for Themselves.
Build a legacy of faith and contentment with a plan and purpose from generation to generation.

adapted from Confident Parenting by Jim Burns (Bethany House Publishers, May 2007)

Also from Jim Burns:
The A.W.E. * To-Do List for Confident Parents
(* affection, warmth and encouragement)

Say I love you.

Remind your kids every day that you love them. The positive reinforcement and verbal reminder of unconditional love will give your children the ability to go on even during tough times, and it will help them to say "no" to temptations.

Show physical affection.

Meaningful touches and hugs, kisses, and even high fives bolster a young person's self image. A real sense of security, self-worth, and meaning comes from appropriate affection.

Listen.
When your kids know you are really listening to them, they will sense how significant they are to you. Listening is the language of love.

Use eye contact.
Don't forget how important body language and eye contact are in letting your children know you care. With your eyes focused on them, you show that your heart is focused on them as well.

Pray Daily.
A daily time of prayer with your children helps them grasp how important God is in their lives. Prayer time should be a warm, loving part of children's lives.

adapted from Confident Parenting by Jim Burns (Bethany House Publishers, May 2007)