Internet has surely changed the way we look at parenting and parents.
As parents, we feel intense pressure to do everything right for our kids. There is a perennial pressure of being able to ‘handle it all.’ We are making a shift from pieces of advice from the older or experienced members of society to the internet. In one place, the internet helps parents have an online network where they can seek out advice and support on the basis of their kind of parenting but on the other hand, it causes parents to question themselves often or feel pressure to have perfect kids.
Internet causes taking seemingly minor decisions troublesome as you look at all the problems using a magnifying glass.
This has been something that’s evolved a lot over the years in terms of parenting and the issues related to it.
Way back, the typical decision-making stressors were choosing pre-schools, how to talk about family problems, how to inculcate values in children, etc. But over time there has been a big anxiety swing towards the minutiae of parenthood. Parents spend time researching the best cups to drink out of, the right shoes for learning to walk, and trying to learn the exact right phrases to say for every parenting moment.
A big part of this has to do with the volume of information and resources we have at our fingertips. There is a blog written on everything that you can imagine. There is a social media post on almost every parenting topic. Information is available in every possible format. Do you prefer videos? We have them! Oh, you are a visual learner? We have graphics! Instagram parent? Sorted!
There is no reservoir of information, there is an ocean of information. Most of the information is unverified and we are taking a dip in this ocean without knowing to swim. While having many benefits of the internet can give the illusion that there are ‘right choices’ to be made for almost any decision there is, even the very tiny ones.
But can we deny the fact that it brings stress? A massive amount of stress! So, what do we do about it?
- Keep in mind some basic facts while you research ‘effective parenting tips’ and ‘making right choices’ on the internet.
- Identify the goal of the decision. What is that you want or need from this decision.
- Eliminate choices. You don’t need to choose from 1,000 choices.
- Identify your good enough bar. Sometimes good enough is actually good enough.
- Keep your logic in check. Our brains (and outside influence) have a way of making small decisions big. When you feel this happening ask yourself what’s the worst that would happen if you made the ‘wrong’ choice.
Having an online network isn’t always a bad thing for parents — it can give them more of a platform and allow them to connect with other parents who are dealing with similar struggles and successes. Communities, both online and offline, have blossomed across the globe to help kith and kin to create a village that is safe for the kids.
The idea is to ensure that this community doesn’t make parenting a stressful ride for you.