Today's parents overdo things. They often confuse between 'supporting the child' and 'spoiling the child'. Parents should make sure that they are not holding the children back from thriving, gaining independence and becoming the leaders they have the potential to be.
Here are the 7 damaging parenting behaviours that keep children from becoming leaders – of their own lives and of the world’s enterprises:
1. Not letting the child experience risk:
Psychologists in Europe have discovered that if a child doesn’t play outside and is never allowed to experience a skinned knee, they frequently have phobias as adults. Kids need to fall a few times to learn it’s normal; teens likely need to break up with a boyfriend or girlfriend to appreciate the emotional maturity that lasting relationships require. If parents remove risk from children’s lives, we will likely experience high arrogance and low self-esteem in our growing leaders.
2. Rescuing too quickly:
Today’s generation of young people has not developed some of the life skills kids did 30 years ago because adults swoop in and take care of problems for them. 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. Too much hovering:
It is healthy to teach the child that winning is not success; rather, overcoming their own limitation is. But, it is not good either to treat all the participants like winners. There should be losers, and they should learn how to accept failure and how to appreciate the winners. When we rave too easily and disregard poor behavior, children eventually learn to cheat, exaggerate and lie and to avoid difficult reality.
4. Too much giving away:
This generation parents have the insecurity that they are not perfect. They try to 'please' their own children so that they love the parents all the time. Your child does not have to love you every minute. Your kids will get over the disappointment, but they won’t get over the effects of being spoiled. So tell them “no” or “not now,” and let them fight for what they really value and need. Be careful not to teach them a good grade is rewarded by a trip to the mall. If your relationship is based on material rewards, kids will experience neither intrinsic motivation nor unconditional love.
5. Not sharing past mistakes:
Healthy teens are going to want to spread their wings and they’ll need to try things on their own. We as adults must let them, but that doesn’t mean we can’t help them navigate these waters. 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. Mistaking intelligence 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. That’s not the case. Just because giftedness is present in one aspect of a child’s life, don’t assume it pervades all areas. There is no magic “age of responsibility” or a proven guide as to when a child should be given specific freedoms, but a good rule of thumb is to observe other children the same age as yours. If you notice that they are doing more themselves than your child does, you may be delaying your child’s independence.
7. Not practicing what preaching:
As the leaders of our homes, parents should decide to speak only honest words – white lies will surface and slowly erode character. Watch yourself in the little ethical choices that others might notice, because your kids will notice too. If you don’t cut corners, for example, they will know it’s not acceptable for them to either. Show your kids what it means to give selflessly and joyfully by volunteering for a service project or with a community group. Leave people and places better than you found them, and your kids will take note and do the same.