I have said many times that, as parents, we have no greater teachers than our kids. When I think of all the things that my kids have taught me about being human, compassionate, and accepting I am amazed how I ever taught THEM anything.
Ann Landers once wrote: “It is not what you do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings”. Pretty smart stuff from Ann I think.
Instead of blowing up at them for making a mistake, one of the greatest lessons we could teach our children is to not only accept the mistakes they make but to be sure to learn something from them. It’s bad enough that they will suffer whatever consequences there may be for making a mistake or exhibiting poor judgement but let’s not compound that by missing a great opportunity to present them with an important life lesson. This does not mean that we don’t take their poor judgement or their mistakes seriously. But we compound it all by being angry with them or by punishing them somehow. If this is your style please stop it. It is actually harming them in many ways.
The following are some ideas and questions you might want to share with your son or daughter the next time they mess up in order to help your kids to learn something of value.
If we really want to make a difference in the lives of our children we need to remember a couple of things:
- We all learn from the mistakes we make and not from our successes.
- No one learns by being screamed at.
- Tell your kids that you don’t expect them to be perfect but you do expect that they will learn from the mistakes they make.
- Ask them what they would do differently faced with the same challenge again?
- Remind them that your love for them is unconditional and isn’t lost from them by mistakes they might make.
- Because you may be their parent isn’t reason enough for you to take responsibility for their choices or decisions. At the same time demonstrate your willingness to help seek viable solutions.
- Be sure to acknowledge their efforts to make things right and for accepting the responsibility for what may come.
Making mistakes is part of growing up. Helping our children find solutions and teaching them new skills that would provide a different kind of outcome the next time a similar problem arises is a parents job.
Anyways, that’s how I see things.
All the best and thanks for stopping by, Jim
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Truth Talkin’ Thursday:
Jane and I actually disagreed-well sorta–about my comment regarding parenting. I said that if parents didn’t want to make their kids their #1 priority then they should not have brought them into this world. She said . . . well you can find out what she said by going to U-Tube and going to Truth Talkin’ Thursday Episode #32
Forward Thinking Program:
It’s finished–the third draft of our new paradigm outlining a new concept and program regarding educating our children differently in order to prepare them for the 21st Century market place. There is no homework, no standard testing, learner centered curriculum and why all of it is vital to our children’s education if they are thrive and prosper in the years to come. I will begin to put more on this site in the coming weeks and would like to receive your thoughts pro/con. Please let me know what you think–Jim Comment to me at: jimcloughley.com OR firstname.lastname@example.org