Children are lovely and adorable, and their joyful innocence can amaze and rejuvenate us. Their creativity and ability to play with just about anything is impressive. These qualities are important and should be nurtured into adulthood.
Knowing this, do we still feel like shouting in response to child’s play is a good educational method? We often see it in the supermarket—somebody loses their temper and shouts at their kid. If we value children’s spontaneity and creativity perhaps we should make an effort to create an atmosphere of peace and security in our relationships with them.
It’s interesting to look at the Danish way of parenting. According to the World Happiness Report by the United Nations, people living in this Scandinavian country are the happiest in the world, and have been since 1973. Investigators claim Danish happiness is a product of “hygge,” a means of obtaining a comfortable conviviality which creates a feeling of contentment and fosters closeness. It can be related to the physical surroundings—a cozy blanket, or a warm bed—but it primarily refers to with people’s behavior towards each other.
In the book “The Danish Way of Parenting: What the Happiest People in the World Know About Raising Confident, Capable Kids”, by Jessica Joelle Alexander and Iben Sandahl, based on the Danish philosophy of hygge explain how shouting at kids is rarely seen in Denmark. How do parents in Denmark achieve this? One parent explains, “I think that we as parents have to remain calm and not lose control over ourselves. Because if we can’t achieve this, how can we expect our children to have control over themselves? It would be not fair”.
The Danish parenting philosophy seems rational and reasonable, and as they say, it creates happy adults. We can see a perfect example of this style of parenting in this video: