What Successful Families Do

Step by Step Parenting Tips 1

Have you ever wondered why some families succeed, while others struggle?


What is it that successful families, do differently?

1. Successful parents usually have time prioritized according to what their values deem important.

And they get those things done first. They know what's 'important' over what's 'urgent.'

e.g. maintaining a daily reading routine with a child over checking an Instagram ping.


2. Successful parents usually develop routines, that back up their values.


3. Successful parents congratulate themselves when they stick to their value-determined goals.

They don't beat themselves up, for what they don't get done.

They congratulate themselves, for what they do right and they acknowledge what they do well.

How good is it to feel great about your parenting... Right?


The fact you're reading an article on parenting success,  indicates you're likely quite successful at parenting already.


You may just be looking for a few ideas on how to tweak what's already working. E.g. making your behaviour consistent, improving time management and cooperation, or achieving family  or health goals.


And if you want to be a very successful parent, adding 'little' habits into what you're already doing well, will likely increase your success over time.


And you will increase your success, if you immediately congratulate yourself, every time you do, what you believe you should do. This strategy works because it makes you feel good. And we like to do, what makes us feel good. When our actions reinforce who we believe our best selves to be, we usually feel great. 


But if you take the extra step of recording it, you'll realize just how great a parent you really are... Seriously. 

These habits could be simple things like:

  • Praising specific aspects of children's behaviour, so your child learns exactly what makes a behaviour good. (e.g. aiming for a person's chest when passing a footy.)

  • Looking at your children when they speak to you; so you know when they're listening, and they know they're important to you

  • Putting your phone in a drawer for 10% of the time each day. This supports uninterrupted family time. Say between 5:30 and 8:10.

You're busy right... But could you possibly ease in just one new positive habit?

Your habits will determine your future.

quote by Jack Canfield

...But your habits can also determine your children's futures.

Because words in stories are in context, your child will increase their vocabulary, improve their comprehension, their grammar, plus their ability to predict skills... because they already know what makes sense.

Below is an ideas bank that I've used successfully. You can use them as is. Or as a springboard to create your own ideas that suit you better. Notice how I've always tried to make doing the right thing easier for myself:


  • Put a routine chart on the fridge so kids know what they need to do in the morning

  • Make chores into fun games. e.g. tidying up before the bomb goes off...

  • Use egg timers for turn taking. You can buy sets in three, five, ten minute internals. Great for avoiding arguments

  • Make a chart of what goes in each child's school bag & get them to pack it (You'll need to check, especially at the beginning.) Reward every improvement, & especially when they get it all right.

  • Have at least half a day a week when you do something fun together as a family. e.g. picnic, park, beach, zoo, walk, adventure, etc

  • Put your phone in a drawer for 10% of each day between 5:30 and 8:10. That's family time.

  • Add an opportunity for learning about mathematics incidentally e.g. while cooking, gardening, building

Home Organisation

  • If kid's sport is cancelled have a cooking day. Make heaps of meals and freeze them: curries, spaghetti, Mex, etc. Learn more: Timesavers for Healthy Meals

  • Make up a permanent shopping list of everything you buy. Fluoro the items linked to your menu

  • Establish a fortnightly repeating menu based on your time schedule. e.g. On days you arrive home late use a pre-made frozen meal

  • Put frozen pre-made meals into the fridge to thaw before you leave for work, then you only need to cook rice or pasta. 15 minutes and a healthy dinner is ready.

  • Pack schoolbags the night before, ready for lunches to be added the next morning

Values Support Habits
...And Habits Support Success

 Successful Parents are generally guided by their values/principles. They usually:

  • Have a lifetime-commitment to building positive family relationships

  • Lead by example

  • Value and support health and education

  • Interact honestly and respectfully

  • Are trustworthy, capable and cooperative

  • Have long-term goals for their children to attain success and independence 

  • Are understanding, tolerant and forgiving

  • Model resilience

  • Live within their means. Expect the best. Yet plan for the worst.

2. Parents lead by example and:

  • Set high expectations

  • Provide guiding feedback

  • Respond to individual needs

  • Ensure clear boundaries guide child behaviour

  • Remain involved as their children grow


These parents are:

  • more willing to negotiate around rules

  • factor in individual maturity levels and

  • respond flexibly when the need arises

The best thing you can spend on your kids, is time.  

quote by Arnold Glasgow

5. It's expected that kids will make mistakes as a part of learning. Successful parents use it as an opportunity to help develop resilience.

  • Parents remain calm, look at opportunities to make amends when mistakes occur, and find ways to resolve any problems

  • Successful parents model ways of overcoming difficulties or failures themselves... by adapting

  • Parents show by example, that even large difficulties can be overcome with time and a plan

7. Successful parents use positive expectation & routines to provide a safe framework to support children. They make time to have fun together.

  • Quality time as a family is planned for, and prioritised. e.g. playing family games together, going on holidays together, etc

  • Time is ideally spent together on a daily basis: eating together, reading at night,  etc

  • Routines provide clear expectations of daily and/or weekly responsibilities for children. This helps scaffold personal independence

  • Parent organization/routines helps support the effective running of the household

  • Consequences for less desirable behaviour are usually natural ones. Go to Why Use Natural Consequences? to learn more.

Want to lose weight:

Try flossing your  teeth immediately after finishing your evening meal.

Over months doing this reduced my weight. (I've now taken my belt in three holes.)


A one-minute habit, transformed what was a problem time of day for me.

What simple quick habit can you introduce that might help you overcome a problem?

But this is exactly what happened when I followed the practical tips below. It worked so well for us, I've been asked for this information by family, friends & parents over years.


Just linking one new habit to an existing habit  will stick, if you instantly reward it. If you make yourself feel really good for doing it, 'every' time and especially at the beginning,  the new behaviour will continue. Give yourself that mental pat on the back you deserve... 'Yes. I did it. That's more like me... I stuck to my word.'

  • Encourage kids to unpack their school bags as soon as they walk through the door, put their lunchboxes in the dishwasher and get out their homework.


  • Praise them when they remember, plus give them a reward (that you were going to give them anyway) like a healthy snack after school.



Then immediately reward yourself for sticking to your values of:

  • supplying healthy food for your family

  • helping develop your child's independence and organizational skills

  • having a routine that supports family cooperation 

  • noticing the good things your kids are doing


This should make you feel really good about your parenting ability.

You could put a counter in a jar every time you act consistently with your beliefs. Then you'll train yourself to notice the many positive things you're already doing really well, rather than the things you didn't get to. Get to ten counters... Reward. Get to one hundred... Bigger reward.

Adding even one tiny positive habit can make a massive difference to your children's success because 'positive effects accumulate over time.'

For example... Did you know?

That by spending five minutes a day, reading just one book to your child a day, (from 6 months to 6 years) your child will have been exposed to around a million more words than if you didn't.

They'll learn reading and writing conventions which will help later with their own reading and writing.


For example:

  • reading from left to right,

  • return sweeping to the next line,

  • reading from the top to the bottom of a page,

  • what a full stop is and means,

  • what a question mark is and means,

  • what an author is,

  • what a title is

Healthy Lifestyle

  • Put exercise clothes out ready for morning exercise

  • Exercise first thing, that way despite how busy you are, every day has something in it for you

  • Make up 2 or 3 salads at a time for lunches. That way if you need a snack, you have a salad ready

  • If you want to watch the t.v. do a couple of minutes of stretching or balance as you first watch it

  • Floss your teeth immediately after your evening meal (that way you don't eat after dinner.)

  • Do pelvic floor exercises while you clean your teeth, have a shower, stop at traffic lights

  • Have a bedtime routine: Healthy sleep habits for everyone

Child Education

  • Establish reading a book a day from when children are very young

  • Practise phonics for two minutes every school day with developing readers. Check out the Fun Phonics Game. It's free.

  • Help your child learn the 100 Most Used Words. They make up 50% of everything your kids need to read or write

  • When children are in infants school  have them read to you for ten minutes every school day. It's one of the greatest things you can do for them

  • Set up an afternoon routine: snack, homework, relaxation time after homework

  • If you're buying your child a gift, buy a book on a subject your child is passionate about

  • Play turn taking learning games like: Memory, Bingo, Yahtzee, Guess Who, Monopoly, Free Fun Maths Games

Values are personal. Yet as loving parents, it's interesting how many values we share.

You'll likely have a lot of these values already. But when you expand them out, they can often look like this:

1. Successful parents have a sense of higher purpose related to their family. Family is a priority for them.


  • Parents maintain a strong lifelong commitment to their children's success.

  • They have a positive  ongoing relationship with their partner (regardless of whether they live together or not.)


  • These parents balance the 'me' and 'we' aspects of family well, devoting time to both.


  • They plan and save for future goals

3. Interactions are respectful.

  • Dialogue is open, honest, age appropriate and supports understanding.

  • Genuine trust and co-operation occurs between parents; and between children and parents.

Parents model kindness, respect and co-operation in their every day interactions.


Children are encouraged to have good social skills. These families often have regular extended family contact and involve in their community. Parents have fun with their kids and include them in socializing.

Parents express appreciation and gratitude. Every individual is valued for what they contribute to the family.

4. Successful parents value their own health and well being, evidenced by:

  • providing regular healthy meals,

  • regular exercise and

  • appropriate levels of sleep


Because of the parent's own healthy lifestyles they're good role models for their children.


They're also willing to accept, that different children may have different interests, and/or activity needs.

6. Successful parents maintain a big picture perspective. They plan ahead, aware they're trying to raise independent, responsible, capable, empathetic adults.

  • Parents expose their children to different ideas, experiences and cultures, which encourages tolerance and acceptance

  • Parents give children their own responsibilities and expect them to fulfill these commitments

  • They consistently link privileges to age and maturity

  • Parents increase the child's opportunities for autonomy as they mature.

  • Parents model fiscal responsibility by living within their means. They set up savings plans linked to goals. And they teach their children about the difference between investing and spending.

Any of us who have joined the parenting club know how hard it can be. Some days can be particularly challenging.

Automating my positive parenting habits, made it easier to maintain on those difficult days, that often bring us unstuck.


And the better habits I had, the greater cumulative success I achieved...

If someone said to me, by following the free strategies on the link below, I'd be able to:

  • save three years worth of free time

  • eat healthier

  • plus pay off my mortgage in just over half the time

I wouldn't have believed them.




For more strategies to support child & family success, the following articles may be useful:

Creating Strength Based Kids
Creating strength based kids
Best Ways of Developing Language
Best Ways of Developing Language
Behaviour Strategies That Work
Behaviour Strategies That Work
What is Most Important in Life?
What is most important in life
Setting up a Repeating Menu
Time savers for Healthy Meals
Choosing Gratitude Not Entitlement
A girl kissing her father
Show More

Best Parenting is a high quality parenting website designed with child and family success in mind. It highlights what successful parents do differently to those who struggle. Best Parenting provides free online resources for busy parents who want the best practical advice on: how to give kids a best start in life, better tips for parenting toddlers, effective child rearing strategies, behaviour management tips, successful goal setting and organizational strategies for successful families, easy family dinner recipes, self-care tips for time-poor parents and free kids learning games. The aim of Best Parenting is to provide quality practical parenting tips and advice to best help children and families succeed, using the convenience of a website.

This website provides examples of what worked for me over decades and you are welcome to use these ideas as you see fit but you do so at your own risk. Best Parenting does not provide any guarantee that this information will work in every circumstance with every family or with every child. It is your responsibility as a user of this website to ensure that you adhere to any recommended safety suggestions either implicit or explicit on this site and supervise your children while playing any games suggested. Similarly users of this website are advised to follow any recommendations for seeking professional advice as all information on this site is generic. Best Parenting is an independent website and is not affiliated with any other groups, clubs, religious organizations or educational systems.


Best parenting takes time. The best parenting advice ever is simple: Do your best, don't give up and love your children, no matter what.

by Multi-Award Winning Educator. Early Learning Expert. Author/Illustrator.

     ©2019   ​Australia  


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