How to Understand Your Child’s Personality
The decision to become a parent is, without doubt, one of the most important and challenging commitments in our lives. Being a parent, in all its beauty, is never easy and straightforward and since there are no two same families, there are no strict rules to parenting, although there are specific guidelines that can help parents immerse easier into this new role in life and make sure they raise good, healthy, kind, and responsible children.
At times when parents feel overwhelmed and have doubts about their children’s upbringing, it is never a bad idea to look for advice from experts in the field or other experienced parents. This is where understanding the child’s personality traits can effectively assist you in guiding and nurturing the child as he/she grows. A good parent needs to learn his/her child’s genuine personality characteristics that will remain with them through life so that they can offer them the proper support in accordance to their character.
How to Begin the Journey of Learning Your Child’s Personality?
As pointed out on Child Development Info, one should learn more about their child by observing their behavior in various activities like sleeping, playing, and eating and be able to recognize the more consistent traits, i.e. the ones that are the strongest and that reappear. Also, a parent needs to be aware of the activities their child enjoys the most and activities he/she enjoys the least and whether they easily adjust to changes or need more time for processing the change and adapting to it.
Proper communication within the family is also pivotal for the level of happiness in the child and consequently, in all family members. Regularly finding time to talk to your child is a good way to learn more information about them and understand them better. When you ask your child questions and give them the much-needed space to share their feelings, thoughts, and emotions, you strengthen the bond between you and increase mutual trust. Without a doubt, a good parent is the one in which the child trusts enough and does not feel any restraints to communicate their feelings and thoughts. To build and further strengthen this trust and prolong it throughout life, parents need to take several factors into consideration that will teach them how to have a better grasp of their child’s temperament since a young age.
What Does Temperament Mean?
As explained on Parents, temperament is a group of traits we are born with and this is what makes us different from each other and therefore unique. Our temperament is a potent factor in how we react to the world. For example, how a child approaches a new situation in their life is an example of temperament. And, every child may have its own specific reaction to the same situation mainly because of their character.
A large part of your child’s reaction to daily routines and new situations is largely affected by their traits and according to Parents, there are 5 main ranges of inborn traits which are present in every child, the only difference being in the expression. The patterns of behavior are already visible between 6 and 9 months of age, but the traits become more visible during the toddler years and as the verbal and social skills of the child progress.
The 5 Innate Traits
These traits need to be seen as a continuum and although both ends will be described, a lot of children can be in the middle of the spectrum, as noted on Parents. Let us take a look at each of the traits in detail:
Children on the high range of reaction intensity are the children who are loud and clear about how they feel and often squeal as much as they can when they are happy or throw away things and shout when they are mad.
On the other hand, those on the low reaction range are mostly quiet, sleep a lot, and express emotions with tiny changes in their voice or mild facial expressions.
If your child behaves more towards the high range, try to decrease his/her exposure to potentially explosive situations and include them in some engaging activity or give them a big hug. The low-key children need their attention to be attracted either through dynamic music or dramatic voice while reading as well as a lot of body movement to increase their response.
Active children are noticeable by the time they are walking. They are constantly crawling, running, and climbing things and enjoy being in spaces where there can be a lot of movement.
However, the children who are not so pro-action are satisfied with just sitting and playing like that and exploring the world around them more with their hands rather than with their feet.
It is advisable that children who are on the move are in a safe area for exploration and their parents need to spare time to play hide-and-seek and other active games and should never expect from the child to be still for a longer period of time. If you have a less active child, try to encourage them to be more active by dancing together or placing some interesting toys beyond their reach.
High tolerance children will keep trying until they do what is on their mind whereas less persistent ones will quickly give up and try another activity.
The former needs to be encouraged properly by suggesting another solution if the one they are attempting is not giving results and although they have a hard time accepting a “no” for an answer, redirecting them into something that they can do can be beneficial. The latter require validation for their frustration from time to time and need to be enticed to think of other possible solutions.
There are children who are highly responsive to meeting new people and they usually make immediate contact, smile, or greet them whereas there are children who are more shy and hesitant around people they do not know.
The latter need more time and support before becoming comfortable enough for interaction. Make sure not to immediately label the child as shy but explain that they like things to go slowly and it is always a good idea to prepare them in advance when you want them to meet new people so that they have more time to get used. The former should be given a lot of space to socially interact, but it is also important to teach them that time spent alone is an opportunity to develop their imagination and to learn how to be happy alone.
Some children react to the tiniest changes, like a new food or a change in their bedtime whereas others do not find shifts to be something “negative”, but rather interesting and are comfy wherever you take them.
If your child is like this, one will probably not have problems with this aspect of their life and spending time in the outside world; however, always enjoy quality time alone as well. The ones who are not so keen on changes should be given notice about the beginning or end of some activities or given more time to adjust to new things gradually to minimize the outbursts.
Final Thoughts on Learning Your Child’s Personality
With certainty, one of the major contributing factors to quality parenting is learning your child’s personality traits so that you can easily adapt him/her to the surroundings and make sure you lead them on the right path. Sometimes, not being able to distinguish between a child who is not eager for changes and a child who adapts easily to new things can be problematic and cause misunderstanding, poor communication, and negative behavior from the child. Of course, the child’s temperament forms throughout life, but the above-mentioned 5 inborn traits that are the foundation of their character need to be taken into consideration if you want to up your parenting skills.