Feel like everything you say to your littles keep sliding in one ear and going out the other?
Tired and near-frustrated from repeating the same thing over and over again? And (you will love this), ready to parent, train and discipline with joy, ON purpose and with results of godly, well-balanced kids?
Then lets dig into these 5 mistakes you MUST avoid as a sweet mother.
I absolutely love writing on this blog to the woman reading on the other side of my screen. I may not see you or know you personally, but this relationship is personal, and I carry YOU in my heart. YOU are why I write, and by God’s grace, will keep writing for a very long time.
Parenting is such a JOB, a full-time job and I want you to enjoy it, which is why I am sharing these mistakes so that we can avoid it on our way to purposeful, joyful parenting.
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. So says Proverbs 22 v 6
Here are 5 mistakes to avoid as we train.
1. Underestimating the HARDWORK training is.
This for me is the biggest thing we must note; there is nothing easy about intentional, godly parenting. It will cost you time, your voice, your sleep, your energy, your money and more.
But it is so worth it.
Many times, we think as moms that we can just parent casually and expect everything to somehow end up well. So when things start to look hard, frustrating and all, we are surprised.
If you get into the parenting, and especially mommy season knowing that this thing is going to be ‘hard work’, then you are better adjusted for it. It is like me trying to lift a 20kg dumb bell casually with one hand. I will fail and be frustrated. But if I was a bit more intentional, and got ready for it before squatting to life, I would have my 2 hands ready and muscle up to lift that thing.
I can lift it.
I only need to prepare for it.
Ditto parenting.You can absolutely do it right.
You only need to be prepared. Be prepared to TRAIN and put in the hard work, which incidentally is one of the most beautiful hard work ever with incredible returns on EVERYTHING.
2. Stopping too soon because you think it is not working
My Sister, this is another MAJOR one. Oh, this microwave generation that lacks patience and wants everything to work now now now. Sorry, God is still in the ‘waiting’ business, and for a lot of things, we would have to wait. In training as a parent especially, you cannot stop ooo my sister, until you see the results.
Say for instance, you have been teaching your kids to greet every time they see an older person. And EVERYTIME they see an older person, you STILL have to say ‘What do you say to XXXX?’ before they greet.
I know it is frustrating but don’t stop abeg. It is working, I assure you. It just hasn’t yet manifested. Which is somewhat like what happens when we pray.
Mark 11 v 24 KJV.
Therefore I say unto you, what things so ever ye desire when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
You see, first you PRAY, then you BELIEVE that you have RECEIVED it, then you shall HAVE it.
To receive it is like what happens after you pay for a delivery and you get that confirmation email. It is not yet in your home, BUT you know it is on its way, so you stay expectant for it.
So, your seeds are working ooo. One day, boooooom, you will just see them manifesting all you have been training on, and you will be like ‘them that dream’. Please don’t stop too soon so you don’t uproot those seeds.
3. Getting tired of REPEATING
This is closely related to number 2 but I wanted it to stand alone because I didn’t want you to miss it.
REPEATING as a parent, and especially a MOM is OK. Now, your attitude when you repeat is what we need to adjust, and this can be adjusted right when you NORMALISE repeating.
I wish I could say that every kid will get it the first or second time and you wont have to repeat yourself, but that is not true mama. You will find yourself saying the same thing 752 times, but don’t get tired.
It is normal, to a large extent.And no, you don’t have to discipline them for every time they make you repeat.
Now, some things are pure disobedience and must be taken care of, but other things are just because they are still trying to grow and have these things solidify in their brains.So don’t repeat with a bad attitude, in fact I dare you to start to repeat with JOY knowing that many children and moms around the world are encountering the same thing too hehe.
I had to make this mental adjustment because I started to get frustrated about stuff like, having to repeat and repeat what happens when they get back from school. Bag here, lunch box here, singlet and uniform here, pant/boxers here, shoes here, etx.
Now, some days, they do it nice and smooth. Some days I have to say it 50 times. Some days, they need me to get out my cane to keep things moving fast.
All three scenes are just alright, at least at the stage of my kids, who are 6 and 4. Honestly, it is much easier now, but where I have to repeat, I repeat with joy.
Even Paul says
Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe…
Phil 3 v 1
Or see how the MSG says it.
I don’t mind repeating what I have written in earlier letters, and I hope you don’t mind hearing it again. Better safe than sorry—so here goes.
4. Disciplining WRONG
Personally, discipline for me has three major goals
-To let them KNOW very clearly what they did wrong and WHY it is wrong
-To show them that there are CONSEQUENCES for it
-To show them a better way so it doesn’t repeat itself. This is godly repentance.
Most of us just discipline in a way that shows ONE THING; WE ARE ANGRY. The child is crying yes, but has not been disciplined, because you let your emotions get the better of your training.
So you find that the child is a ‘repeat offender’ or just does what you want without a solid reason why, and so would most likely deviate at the first opportunity he gets without consequences.
Which is why kids who grow in VERY STRICT homes seem compliant until they get to the boarding house, or university, and boom, they let loose.
Please, discipline RIGHT. And no, you don’t always have to raise your voice.
5. Not being CONSISTENT
I especially don’t like this one because it just shows a lack of discipline, something we as moms don’t want to model for our kids. Once you are not consistent, that is following through on what you started, and maintaining a standard at home that is not always changing, YOU CONFUSE YOUR CHILD.
So today, it is OK to play before they get their chores done, then tomorrow, you spank that child for PLAYING before doing their chores.
Oh gosh, even as an adult, working with an inconsistent boss is FRUSTRATING and many of us are just frustrating our kids with our indiscipline and ever changing standards. We MUST model what we want to see, and follow through even when we don’t feel like it.
Granted, some times, you will have to break the rules, but let them KNOW, in your words and subsequent actions, that that remains the exception and not the norm. What will really help with this is to have systems and processes for everything at home.
Let me share one of mine and hopefully, this principle you can take and apply elsewhere.
My kids know that before they think of play, all these must be done. We started it during the summer break because they were mostly home all day and I wanted them to know that PLAY is PRIVILEGE and EARNED, not their work.
Imagine if they wake one day, and because I don’t want to be disturbed (some of these things will involve my participation or REPEATED INSTRUCTIONS), I let them play.
Imagine how confused they would be.So, no matter how I feel, they must get all, or almost all done, or NO PLAY. Now, some days, we let the rules down, and I let them know it is a ‘special day’, because they have been especially good, or I am just in a nice mood. So they know that it wont become the NORM.
Moms, let us be CONSISTENT!
Now your turn.
Which of these mistakes have you been making and will now stop?
What other mistakes did I not highlight here that you are familiar with. Share in the comments, and if this blessed you, also share with your community of moms and chicks.
God bless you and HAPPY JOYFUL parenting.
So much love