-- Bette Davis
I love this quote by Bette Davis. We can't be our child's friend and also be their parent. They won't always like us. There was a terrific article by Kathy Caprino in Forbes magazine last week about parenting. She said, "As a parent myself, I’ve learned that all the wisdom and love in the world doesn’t necessarily protect you from parenting in ways that hold your children back from thriving, gaining independence and becoming the leaders they have the potential to be." She interviewed leadership expert Dr. Tim Elmore to "learn more about how we as parents are failing our children today — coddling and crippling them — and keeping them from becoming leaders they are destined to be."
The article then shares Dr. Elmore's seven damaging parenting behaviors. I will summarize them, but I encourage you to read the full article.
1. We don’t let our children experience risk
If parents remove risk from children’s lives, we will likely experience high arrogance and low self-esteem in our growing leaders.
2. We rescue too quickly
When we rescue too quickly and over-indulge our children with “assistance,” we remove the need for them to navigate hardships and solve problems on their own.
3. We rave too easily
When we rave too easily and disregard poor behavior, children eventually learn to cheat, exaggerate and lie and to avoid difficult reality.
4. We let guilt get in the way of leading well
If your relationship is based on material rewards, kids will experience neither intrinsic motivation nor unconditional love.
5. We don’t share our past mistakes
Share with them the relevant mistakes you made when you were their age in a way that helps them learn to make good choices.
6. We mistake intelligence, giftedness and influence for maturity
Intelligence is often used as a measurement of a child’s maturity, and as a result parents assume an intelligent child is ready for the world.
7. We don’t practice what we preach
As parents, it is our responsibility to model the life we want our children to live. To help them lead a life of character and become dependable and accountable for their words and actions
I can certainly see parenting mistakes in these seven behaviors that I have made. I encourage you to take charge as a parent, read the whole article, and make the changes needed to raise children that are self-sufficient, mature, and full of leadership potential.
"Care enough to train them, not merely treat them to a good life. Coach them, more than coddle. “--Dr. Elmore