How to Raise Highly Successful Kids, According to Science

Raising children is no easy task—from adopting certain parenting styles to instilling the values and character traits you deem important, a parent’s job is never through. Raising highly successful children is an entirely different beast to tackle, as Business Insider discusses in a recent article. Fortunately, certain psychology studies, old and new, exist to help us understand exactly what goes into raising highly competent, self-sufficient children. Here are the three things these parents all have in common, according to Business Insider:

BI quotes Lythcott-Haims, TED Talk speaker and author of the best-selling book How to Raise an Adult, who emphasizes the importance of accountability. “If kids aren’t doing the dishes, it means someone else is doing that for them,” says Lythocott-Haims. “And so they’re absolved of not only the work, but of learning that work has to be done and that each one of us must contribute for the betterment of the whole.”

Perhaps the biggest predictor of competence later in life is social skills. Socially competent and empathetic children are more likely to graduate from college and land a full-time job by their mid-20s, according to a 20-year study published in the American Journal of Public Health. Children with limited social skills, however, were more likely to binge-drink, get arrested, and apply for public housing later in life.

Unsurprisingly, parents who expect a lot from their children throughout childhood and adolescence generally raise productive members of society. “Parents who saw college in their child’s future seemed to manage their child toward that goal irrespective of their income and other assets,” said Neal Halfon, lead author of a 2001 study on parental expectations and attainment.

Check out the full list of parental tactics over at Business Insider, and share your parenting tips with us in the comments below.