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10 Common Mistakes Every Parent Has Made At Least Once

10 Common Mistakes Every Parent Has Made At Least Once

There’s no such thing as a 100% perfect parent – everybody makes mistakes. Maybe you are about to have a child, or you already have one but are still keen to improve your parenting skills. Well, remember, mistakes happen and it does not mean that you are a bad parent.

Learn from these 10 common mistakes every parent has made, and make use of our helpful tips on what to do so you can minimize making these parenting mistakes yourself.

Mistake #1: Getting overly stressed out when your baby is crying

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    Most parents associate crying with the thought that they are doing something wrong and need to fix it asap. But most of the time that is just not true. Babies can be perfectly diapered and fed and still cry because that’s the way babies communicate. It doesn’t mean you are doing something wrong.

    What should you do instead?

    Be calm. For the most part, crying is just part of being a baby. But if your infant is inconsolable for a long time, or has fever, a rash, a swollen belly or is vomiting, then you need to call your pediatrician to see if everything is okay.

    Mistake #2: Waking your baby from sleep, just to breastfeed him or her

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      Some parents think that one breastfeed is not enough to get an infant through the night. However, breastfed babies can – and should – sleep through the night. There are no studies that show that babies will starve unless they are fed in the middle of the night!

      What should you do instead?

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      Let the baby sleep anyway. Both you and the baby will benefit from some extra sleep.

      Mistake #3: Thinking that a fever in a newborn is nothing serious and will go away by itself

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        Any fever over 100.4 Celsius rectally in the first three months of a baby’s life is an emergency. The one exception is a fever that develops within 24 hours after an infant’s first set of immunizations. Some parents may just say the baby ‘feels warm’ and give them Tylenol. But that’s a parenting mistake in this age group. An infant’s immune system is not set up to handle an infection on its own.

        What should you do instead?

        If your child feels warm, take their temperature. If the temperature is above 100.4C, it is something serious, so call your pediatrician immediately.

        Mistake #4: Not properly installing the baby car seat

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          Many parents, especially new parents, don’t really know how to install a baby seat properly. They might think that they have done it correctly, but many times that’s not the case. This simple mistake can cost lives. Do not be the parent that makes this fatal mistake.

          What you should do instead?

          Your infant’s life depend on it, so check with the store that you have installed the baby car seat properly.

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          Mistake #5: Neglecting your children’s oral care

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            We all know how important oral care is for humans. But we often underestimate the importance of oral care for our children. We may think that since they are very young, they are still clean and less likely to get tooth and gum diseases. However, this is not the case.

            What should you do instead?

            Your baby is never too young for you to start encouraging good oral health habits. Use wet gauze to wipe down your baby’s gums. Start using a toothbrush when the baby turns one.

            Mistake #6: Rushing your kids through childhood

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              Raising small children can be hard, monotonous work. At times it’s so physically and emotionally exhausting we wish they were older to make our life easier. Many parents make a mistake by rushing their children through childhood.

              What should you do instead?

              Let your child enjoy the wonder of childhood. Childhood is a time for free play and discovery. When we rush children through it, we rob them of an innocent age that they’ll never pass through again.

              Mistake #7: Teaching your kids unhealthy competition, simply because you are highly competitive

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                Every parent has a competitive streak. However, sometimes it simply goes too far. For example, if your kid loses in a swimming competition and you get angry because you think he’s not as good as his friend … Well, don’t be!

                Children need to work hard and understand that dreams don’t come on a silver platter; they have to sweat and fight for them. But when we instill a “win at all costs” attitude, permitting them to throw anyone under the bus to get ahead, we lose sight of the importance of character. Character may not seem important in adolescence, but in adulthood it’s everything.

                What should you do instead?

                Teach your kids to be competitive while being respectful to the other competitors. Ask them to congratulate the winner when they lose. Teach them the meaning of healthy competition.

                Mistake #8: Forgetting that your actions speak louder than words

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                  You may think that you have taught a lot of life lessons to your children, but did you know that your children learn more from your actions than your words? If you want your children to be wonderful, you need to aim for wonderful in yourself, too. You need to be the person you hope they will be. Are you telling them to keep their room clean while your own room is a mess? Make sure that your actions are good examples for them.

                  What should you do instead?

                  Talk is cheap, action is valuable. Don’t just talk them about something, show them how it should be done.

                  Mistake #9: Raising the child we want, not the child we have

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                    As parents we harbor dreams for our children. They start when we get pregnant, before the gender’s even known. Every parent wants their children to be the best that they can be. But the irony of parenting is that children turn our molds upside down. They come out wired in ways we never anticipated.

                    What should you do instead?

                    Our job is to figure out their natural talents and train them in that direction. Forcing our dreams on them won’t work. Only when we see them for who they are can we impact their life powerfully.

                    Mistake #10: Believing our child is perfect

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                      One thing I often hear from professionals who work with children, such as counselors and teachers, is that parents today don’t want to hear anything negative about their child. When concerns are raised, even concerns voiced out of love, the knee-jerk reaction is often to attack the messenger.

                      What  should you do instead?

                      The truth can hurt, but when we listen with an open heart and mind we stand to benefit. We can intervene early before a situation gets out of hand. It’s easier to deal with a troubled child than repair a broken adult.

                      So, which parenting mistake can you relate most? Tell me in the comments section below.

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                      Last Updated on September 28, 2020

                      The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

                      The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

                      At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

                      Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

                      One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

                      When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

                      So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

                      Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

                      This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

                      Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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                      When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

                      Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

                      One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

                      Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

                      An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

                      When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

                      Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

                      Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

                      We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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                      By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

                      Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

                      While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

                      I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

                      You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

                      Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

                      When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

                      Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

                      Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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                      Con #2: Less Human Interaction

                      One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

                      Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

                      Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

                      This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

                      While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

                      Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

                      Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

                      This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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                      For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

                      Con #4: Unique Distractions

                      Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

                      For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

                      To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

                      Final Thoughts

                      Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

                      We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

                      More About Working From Home

                      Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

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