Parenting: 2 Things Sabotaging Your Best Efforts



This parenting help is for you. Yes, especially to those of you who are human.  You know, the kind of parents who make mistakes?

Let’s simplify your parenting woes today by looking at just 2 things that are undermining all of your best parenting efforts.

It’s not spelling homework, picky eaters or teen dating – it’s much sneakier than that.

Any guesses? One of them is appropriately a four letter word, and the other is its evil sidekick. Ready? Here goes…fear and doubt.

Yes, it’s true, those two feelings are the powerful momentum behind our biggest parenting fumbles.

Fear and Doubt are among the most debilitating feelings. They cripple us, bring out the worst in us, and in the end re-affirm any thoughts of inadequacy we may have as a parent.

Fear and Doubt? Really? How can they be that POWERFUL?

“Feelings” are intangible and hard to really quantify – so how can they be such a problem?

It’s this simple:

  • FEELINGS drive all of our ACTIONS
  • Our ACTIONS create our RESULTS
  • NEGATIVE feelings               NEGATIVE Actions             NEGATIVE Results
  • POSITIVE feelings                 POSITIVE Actions               POSITIVE Results


One thing I find that all parents have in common is a fear of failure as a parent.

Fear that their kids will mess up.

Fear that their kids will do poorly in school.

Fear that they won’t give their kids all that they need.

Doubt that they are a good parent.

Doubt that they will succeed.

Anytime you are living in fear and feeling doubt, you are not being effective. Period.

As we begin to break off the shackles of fear and doubt – think about this – Maybe there is GREAT PURPOSE and design behind your child being yours. Perfection is NOT the reason. Your success and failures as a parent are equally valuable to them.

Your children are yours… isn’t that reason enough to believe that YOU are who they need?

Now, let’s take the very common example of parents fear about their children “messing up.” When we allow this fear to dominate us, our behavior will most often be described as…

Angry… agitated… frustrated… need I go on?

Those feelings and actions will create distance between you and your child – causing more distress in the relationship, and most likely re-affirm any feelings of inadequacy.

When you behave this way you are not being an effective parent. You are not engaging in positive interaction. You are not accomplishing what you want. Why? All because of FEAR and DOUBT. When these two saboteurs get a hold of you, you can’t think clearly, you can’t feel positive emotions, and you can’t be effective.

Now that I’ve got you thinking, let’s take 2 main ideas that can marinate in your brain. Maybe, just maybe you will find these to have more truth and power than your current thoughts of fear.

So here’s what I’ve got…

1.  If you are worried your kids will mess up, no need to worry – they WILL. Whew, I know the suspense was killing you!

So, no matter WHAT you do, there will come a day and a time (likely more than one) that they will mess up.   What if you can LET GO of the idea that you can control that? What if you can let go of the idea that you should control it?

Messing up is part of the human experience -that is how they will learn and grow.  Do you really want to try to take something from them that is their KEY TO SUCCESS?  Fearing it will only make it more painful. Choosing to feel joy and love with your child instead of fear can turn painful mistakes into building blocks for success.


2.  If you doubt that you will succeed as a parent, guess what, sometimes you won’t succeed. It’s that simple.

Failure is a normal part of life, and likewise parenthood. Doubting yourself increases fear and insecurity… leading to more failure, and less success. Not a very prosperous road to go down.

By embracing the fact that you are imperfect, rather than letting it paralyze you, you will empower yourself to move beyond the imperfections, and be something MORE amazing for your child.

If you feel hopeful and empowered as a parent – that is when your AWESOME will come out of hiding.

Believe in yourself as a parent. Have faith in yourself that you can do it. Expect to mess up – and when you do, love yourself anyway. Trust in your kids and give them the benefit of the doubt. Let them mess up – and love them when they do.

Loving each other through the “mess ups” is where all the magic happens.

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with love,

Molly Claire