Family First

Striving for Parental Efficacy

Avoiding Common Parenting Mistakes


Striving for Parental Efficacy

As a parent, you don’t have to be perfect, but you have to be effective. You have to be open to all sorts of possibilities and scenarios as you take on the challenge of raising kids, and each experience will put your parenting skills to the test. The first step in becoming an effective parent is acknowledging the fact that what might work in one situation won’t necessarily solve another problem. Some may say that having “parenting instincts” is innate, but it is not advisable to rely only on hunches especially where your kids are concerned.

Parenting is definitely a complex process, but there are certain things to watch out for in your journey to becoming the best dad or mom to your children. Vincent Ianelli, MD of the American Academy of Pediatrics shares common parenting mistakes that should be avoided to promote the well-being of your kids:

  1. Giving Up on Problems. Temper tantrums, bad behavior, frequent night awakenings and similar actions may cause some frustration as parents can’t really exercise full control over their children, but there are ways to curb these. Instead of allowing kids to behave poorly over and over, parents can be proactive by consulting professionals or doing their own research on how to overcome these difficulties.
  2. Setting Unrealistic Standards. Putting too much pressure on your kids will not always motivate them to do better. Sometimes, this can result in them blaming themselves for never living up to your expectations. As such, make sure that your expectations are at the same level of development that your child is in at a certain point in time.
  3. Being Inconsistent with Your Parenting Style. Being too strict one time and too lenient the other may give your children the wrong impression when it comes to following the rules you have established within the home. Be conscious about how you approach their every move and stick to the style that you believe is best for your kids.
  4. No Boundaries. Without rules or limits to follow and observe, children would think that they can do whatever they want, even if their actions may be destructive to others. Set them up for real world success by instilling in them respect and knowledge on what is right and wrong through age-appropriate rules and boundaries.
  5. Retaliating. It may be tempting to fight back when your child does or says something bad to you, but as a parent, you have to take the higher road. Retaliating may also give them the idea that they can trigger a negative reaction out of you every time they behave a certain way, so use a more peaceful way to connect with them instead.
  6. Sticking to Old, Ineffective Ways. Not because it was proven effective before does it mean that it will lead to the same results today. Maintain an open mind and evaluate your parenting techniques. Keep doing those that work, and change those that don’t.