Parenting is nerve-wracking.
You love your children and want them to grow up to be happy, successful adults.
But some days you’re not sure how to make that happen.
Sometimes you fear that something you’re doing or saying will mess them up permanently.
Here’s the good news: Part of great parenting is avoiding mistakes.
The even better news is that you don’t have to discover these mistakes for yourself.
I’ve worked with thousands of children and teenagers, and they’ve told me the mistakes their parents have made.
Here are 20 unintentional ways parents mess up their children, so start avoiding these behaviours today!
Mistake #1: Frequently tell them that they’re not living up to their potential
Parents often mean well when they say this. They think it’ll encourage their children to work harder and become more focused.
Unfortunately, it has the opposite effect. It makes children feel like a failure.
It also makes children feel as though their parents only love them when they’re successful or working hard.
A more effective approach is to encourage your children to self-reflect.
After all, how they feel about themselves is more important than how others feel about them.
Mistake #2: Scold them harshly when they make unintentional mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes.
But when your children accidentally spill their juice or drop a plate, it’s important not to overreact.
Doing so can cause them to develop a fear of failure. They may start to think that making mistakes is bad.
But in truth, making mistakes is the way we learn.
So when your children make a mistake, stay calm and say something like, “It was an accident. Let’s clean it up.” [Read more…]