Understanding this concept is paramount to implementing it with success. Far too many people equate it with a complete lack of structure or discipline or boundaries. Not the case at all, it’s simply one more way to help your child find success in growing up. I love the ending line. “Above all…focus on connection, love and relationship.” Good advice for all of us in dealing with anyone.

Dr. Nicholas Jenner PsyD, MA

As children grow older, they like to explore and push boundaries. What they are looking for is a sense of autonomy and self-confidence, an important cog in the wheel of development. The way parents handle this is crucial for the child’s development. When children are not allowed to explore in a child proof home or are punished and smacked by parents for what is in reality,  age appropriate behavior, they develop a sense of shame and doubt.

It is important to note that we are talking here about giving our children a “sense” of autonomy, not autonomy itself. Erik Erikson, a well-known psychologist,  believed that is essential that parents give their children a chance to seek for this “sense” and make it stronger than the feelings of shame and doubt. Then and only then, will children have the confidence to later pursue and shape their own ideas and plans. Erikson advised building…

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