I’m still learning how to be a good parent. Here are a few mistakes I’m making or have made. Maybe you can add to this list.
Mistake #1 – Backing off of “NO”.
If “no” becomes something besides “no” on the small things, it will come back to bite you on the big stuff. Even though I know erosion is bad, sometimes I’m a softy.
Mistake #2 – Allowing my children to negotiate.
Anytime a kid is asked to do something, their initial response will be to negotiate. Negotiating obedience is bad. Obey first.
Mistake #3 – Me not being on the same team as mom.
A divided house cannot stand. If they’ve asked mom and got a “no” before asking me, it is not going to go well in the land. Undermining authority and manipulation is bad.
Mistake #4 – Saying “be careful.”
What does that do? It makes you think you’ve done your job as a parent to protect your child but really has no actual effect on their safety. It would be just as beneficial to say, “be careless.” I want my kids to take risks. If something is too dangerous then I should say “no”. If I don’t say “no,” my kids know to go for it, full on. That of course doesn’t eliminate injury but it does remove a layer of decision making from a child that they should not have to make. I still catch myself saying “be careful” sometimes.
Mistake #5 – not spending enough “no strings” time with my kids.
This is a hard one. I know they will do better in everything if motivated by love.