5 Tips for Learning From Your Mistakes As A Parent

Being a parent can be one of the most rewarding and beautiful experiences you may ever have. However, it doesn't come without its difficulties. One of the hardest things you'll need to contend with is making mistakes. Here are five tips for learning from your mistakes as a parent.

  1. Allow Humility

As a parent, it can be difficult to admit that you are wrong. After all, you are the adult in the situation. However, despite your greater experience, you're still human. You can make mistakes. More importantly as an adult, you can learn from your mistakes and move forward. 

If you ever feel yourself getting defensive in a tense situation, try taking a moment of reflection. See things from your child's point of view. Try not to make excuses, ignore the issue or maintain the high ground. If you allow yourself to feel humility, you can deal with the problem in a healthy manner.

  1. Understand What You Did

In order to heal and move forward, you must fully understand what was done. Otherwise, you may not be able to learn from the experience. You may also struggle with showing genuine remorse. Before you do anything else, take some time to reflect on the situation. If you're unclear about anything, ask a significant other. You can also ask your child for another point of view. 

When determining the situation, here are some essential factors to get straight:

  • What specific mistake was made
  • The surrounding circumstances
  • How this mistake affected everyone

In some cases, your mistake may not be a one-time thing. You might realize that you've been doing something wrong for a while. In this case, it's even more important to consult others that may have a better recollection. 

  1. Consider What You Can Do Better

No one is perfect. No matter how experienced you are as a parent, you will make mistakes. Therefore, instead of worrying about messing up, learn how to move forward. 

Think about what happened. What led up to the problem? What were you thinking at the moment? Next, reimagine what happened. What could you change? Were your initial thoughts healthy or rational? Once you determine what could have been done better, you can turn the experience into a lesson. Whenever you're in a similar situation, take a breath, analyze the issue and react in a healthier way.

  1. Communicate With Your Family

Communication is key in any situation. Therefore, while your inner thoughts may feel very personal, you'll want to be open and honest with your family. Once you've completed some self-reflection, try calling a family meeting.

If your child is old enough to understand the situation, be sure to include the little one in your discussion. Kids comprehend more than you may think, and acknowledging the situation is usually kinder than ignoring it. 

During this meeting, if the situation warrants it, you can deliver an apology. Be sure to avoid phrases like "I'm sorry if..." and "You wouldn't understand". Treat everyone at the table as equals and stay genuine. Once you've gotten everything out, everyone will probably feel a lot better.

  1. Forgive Yourself

When you're a parent, making a mistake can feel like the end of the world. However, as long as you acknowledge your actions and learn, there's no reason to flounder in self-hatred. Therefore, one of the most important (and healthiest) parts of this process is forgiving yourself.

If the mistake was more than minimal in your eyes, your journey to forgiveness may not be immediate. That's okay! All that matters is that you maintain your mental health and learn from your mistakes. If you feel yourself becoming depressed, consider getting a therapist and reaching out.

Being a parent isn't about being perfect. If you stop to think, learn from your mistakes and truly care, you'll do beautifully!