Growth Mindset for Parenting
Parenting is a Skill We Can All Improve
Parenting is hard. We hear it all the time because it’s true. But if we get stuck on the hard parts, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. We talk about giving kids a growth mindset—the idea that your skills improve through effort, practice and learning. The same approach can apply to parenting. When we start to see parenting as a skill, then we normalize parent education and support for all!
“Childhood is not a never-ending time. We need to be intentional. We can’t just ‘roll with it.’ Take note of your situation and how it’s affecting your children,” says Nicola Britton, Family Education Instructor with Any Baby Can.
Supporting Parents Through Education
Parenting is shaped by a person’s culture and upbringing, current challenges facing their family, as well as systemic hurdles to navigating family life.
While our history gives us tools for parenting our kids, it’s important to realize that we don’t have to raise kids the same way. Parenting is not predetermined. You can get new tools, throw out ones that don’t work anymore, and build our own parenting toolbox. Use what you’re good at and refine the areas you see as challenges to family life.
The best solution is what works for your family. In our Nurturing Families class, we don’t lecture on the best way to parent. We work together as a group and over time we develop and improve each person’s unique parenting style. In Healthy and Fair Start, there is not a strict week-to-week curriculum. The parent shares a need, a struggle or a desired change in behavior, and we find solutions that work with what the parent already does well.
“There’s no competition. There are no comparisons. You’re going at your own pace, and your child is too – pair up and you’ll make the best out of the situation,” advises Maria Arias, Certified Parent Educator in Any Baby Can’s Healthy and Fair Start program.
Together we set goals that are realistic, attainable and align with the family’s needs and values.
Through education, family resources and community, we support parents in improving their parenting skills, to raise happy and healthy children.
How Do You Improve Your Parenting Skills?
It’s easy to get stuck in a pattern when parenting. We’re all rushed, busy and stressed. To improve the skill of parenting, we need to do three things: practice, reflect and adjust. And really be okay with trial and error.
One of the biggest parts of improving parenting is reflection. When you take a moment to reflect on how the day went, or how the bedtime routine or school drop off is going, you move from “auto-pilot” to practicing a skill.
“It’s empowering for parents to feel that they have a path and something to try,” says Maria Arias, Certified Parent Educator in Any Baby Can’s Healthy and Fair Start program.
Just like any skill, the more you practice, the better you’ll get at it! When you practice a good habit, you replace an old one. And that takes time. But the good habits feel better, and you start seeing changes in your child, which is motivating for any family.
The good news is that there’s no limit to the number of times you can try again!
Positive Effects for the Whole Family
Parenting with intention has a direct effect on important childhood outcomes like their success in school, emotional regulation, better relationships with friends and future partners, improved development, and so much more!1,2
Let’s rally behind the idea that all parents need support, and that it’s our collective responsibility to provide it! At Any Baby Can, we see our role as parent coaches, and as cheerleaders. We build a system of support around parents so that they can be their best selves in parenting, and in the rest of their lives.
"When you nurture yourself, you are better able to nurture others. How do we meet our own needs? How do we regulate our own emotions? Through self-care and nurturance, we strengthen our empathic response and take on a new parenting perspective that supersedes self-sacrifice,” says Cameron Paredes, Family Education Instructor.
Making people better parents is not the end goal. The goal is to raise safe and happy children, and to achieve healthy developmental outcomes. This, in turn, has a positive effect on our community as a whole!
1 Parents as Teachers: An Evidence-Based Home Visiting Model, © 2022, Parents as Teachers National Center, ParentsAsTeachers.org
2 Nurturing Parenting Programs and 40 Years of Evidence, © 2023 Family Development Resources, Inc., NurturingParenting.com
Gain parenting skills and create strong, positive relationships with their children.
Certified Parent Educators offer parents important knowledge about how to form strong bonds with their children.
The health and success of a child is influenced by a variety of factors, including social support.