Effective parenting: understanding your child's personalities

Effective parenting: understanding your child's personalities

The other day, my oldest daughter came home from school and said to me that a classmate told her, "You have something on your nose." She was very concerned about this, and it became clear to me that my daughter is extremely sensitive. Things like this can mean the world to her "This girl hates me!", or "I don't even like her!".

It's valuable for parents to understand where each of their children falls on the personality spectrum because this knowledge helps us respond appropriately. But what's interesting is that parents will often see their children's personalities very differently. For example, you might assume your child's personality resembles yours, but you'd be off the mark.

Parents first need to understand their personalities

Understanding your personality is a great place to start. This is because a parent's personality has a strong influence on their parenting styles and how they perceive their children's personalities. For example, an extroverted parent might misconstrue his empathetic son as socially awkward or weak.

A less sensitive parent might find her sensitive daughter emotional and hard to comprehend. The lack of understanding often brings a lot of conflict and making both parent and child struggle. The bottom line here is that as parents, we first need to understand and connect with ourselves in order to connect with our children.

Accepting who your kids are

I was recently reading The Conscious Parent by Shefali Tsabary. I like how she talks about how parents need to accept their children rather than try to change them. This means that we shouldn't be pushing our kids in specific directions because we're projecting what we might want for our kids in the future.

Instead, she says: "If your child is not who you want them to be, take a look at yourself. What needs changing in your perceptions and expectations?" I think this is an excellent point because our kids are “who they are” personality wise and it's not their job to fit into the mould we have for them. We need to gradually change ourselves to learn how to parent each child as they are, instead of who we want them to be.

Types of personalities in children

Remember that personality is highly complex and has many layers. The below information is very general, and your child will be much more complex than what is presented here.

The sensitive child

Sensitive children are empathetic, creative and passionate people. They are intensely concerned about the world around them and are prone to having their emotions damaged quickly. They might also be the quiet sort that is often urged to speak out by others. Such children want reassurance to feel safe and secure. They may desire more relaxing sensory input.

The thinker child

The thinker kid is best described as logical, independent, focused, and mature. People are often astounded by how mature these children are for their age. They are often self-assured, academic, and analytical. They may, however, battle with perfectionism. They need to be heard and given time to recover, reflect, and organize. The thinker may prefer less sensory input.

The determined child

The determined child is the one who would get so determined on something, no matter how often his parents tell him not to do it again, he'd go right back doing it until he accomplishes what he set out to do. I think this is a highly positive trait. It means that the child has the will and passion for pursuing what he wants in life. It is essential to understand that this child is not trying to be defiant or adamant to you, he's a natural leader and he just loves to see things through.

The sociable child

A sociable child is a natural optimist, loving, impulsive, outgoing, inquisitive, pleasant, adaptive, warm, and engaging personality. Talking, playing, and being distracted help them alleviate stress and fear. These feelings may exacerbate distractibility, disorganization, and work avoidance. If you have a sociable kid, you are aware that they perform better in action and stimulus circumstances.


We all know famous people who turned out into incredibly successful people because their parents celebrated and encouraged their certain traits instead of trying to make them which will diminish their potential. Effective parenting requires knowing ourselves and our children to become the parents they need us to be and enabling them to become who they are meant to be.

Article supplied by Talents Tech Melbourne.