For the parents of toddlers, it is very important to know what you are offering to your kids is affecting their attitudes towards life deeply.
Leaving aside the evolutionary viewpoint, am focusing on the environment we provide for our kids. Many psychologists would agree that children learn through imitation that counts their 90% of learning in total. Such an amazing fact is it! What can a child learn through their parents through imitation:

A. How to speak
B. How to react to emotional disturbance
C. How to express happy feelings
D. How to behave aggressively
E. What to choose from toys
F. What to choose in food
G. How to play with toys
H. How to interact with others
I. How to have fun
J. How to create a fuss
K. How to engage others/attract attentions of others
L. What colors to prefer
In short, children learn how to behave in total from us and we unconsciously and consciously teach them to behave like us.

Parents usually buy cars, trucks, building blocks to their boys and dolls, houses, soft toys for their girls. Thus give their children a clear cut understanding that they belong to a typical category of a boy or girl. Have you observed boys preferring dolls to play with? Have you observed girls preferring toy-cars to play with? Have you seen boys in pink? Have you seen the girls in blue? The answer is ‘yes’, but ‘not often’. It all depends on the caregiver what he/she prefers for children. Parents and other society members inculcate these preferences for our children to become feminine or masculine types. As for boys, we unconsciously choose masculine traits to encourage. For example being bold, brave, powerful, authentic, energetic and strong. For girls, we choose feminine traits like beautiful, smart, social, nice, gentle, caring, and friendly.

Similarly our emotional development depends on our parents’ emotional well being. Mostly from hyper parents, children learn aggressiveness. Quiet parents teach their children quietness. Our fears, intentions, worries, and excitements all children copy and relate. In this connection, parents’ interaction with each other is also very important. Where children learn from parents love for them, they get many meanings from the love within their parents as well. And it is very well understood that children are badly affected by the unhealthy arguments between their parents.

Likewise our eating habits are. Parents recommend eating habits to their children. It is proven fact that parents can establish healthy eating habits for their children by having healthy family food. If parents are obese, children will follow the same style. When parents are dieting, children at the same time, develop a preference towards low calorie food items.

Not only this, parents little gestures, facial expressions and attributes they do not really know about are easily transferred to their children with no effort at all. So much so, parents’ color of socks or color of hat will have tremendous effect on their children’s choice in the future. Studies have shown recently that children develop artistic sense, love for music, humor and glamour by their parent’s attempts to encourage such traits and appreciating remarks for them.

As far as the language is concerned, the argument you use at home to satisfy your children will be used in the same way to satisfy you in the future by your children. The speech you deliver to express your view will be imitated soon by your children. The language you hear on T.V., will have an everlasting effect on your children’s cognitive and emotional development.

Self-esteem, self-concept, self-identity, self-acceptance, self-worth and self-talk all follow the same rule for the development among children. They indirectly and unconsciously learn from their parents' personality traits that eventually become their own characteristics with little modifications.

Therefore keeping above in view, if some of you, being a parent are noticing anything wrong in your children, please look at your ways twice before criticizing your children. You may not find a way at first glance, but if you have a deep insight to check your behavior and your own personality as a whole, you will very well understand where the problem is. For sure, if you are worried, tension will show up in kids, if you are fearful, your kids may become shy, if you are stressed out, your children will feel odd.

Although it is not always practicable to get rid of day-to-day stresses in a moment, so please try to keep it with you-your kids should not smell it at least. You may argue separately, you may look happy in front of your children, and you may leave your worries in front of your children for a while. By hiding your negative or imbalance life style, you will be able to provide your kids a healthy and nourishing atmosphere (here I did not mean to live with negative life style continuously). Things keep on changing, and with more awareness and insight, parents can deal with all odds perfectly, and the time will come when they will be proud of their children in spite of feeling guilty on their shortcomings.

Author's Bio: 

Mona Aeysha, PhD, is an Educational and Developmental Psychologist, have been working as a Teacher, Counselor and Researcher in several institutes of China, Pakistan and Cambodia. Her major areas of interest are: self –esteem, self-concept, conceptual psychology, belief psychology, self psychology, preferential psychology, cultural psychology and women psychology.
You are always welcome to contact her via email if you have any query in this regard.
Dr Mona