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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 May 21, 2019

                      13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                      13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                      Creating your productivity ritual — a routine that helps you to maintain a peak level of energy can get you the best out of your days.

                      Part of creating your productivity routine involves removing activities that drain you (what I call “kryptonites”), and that includes your bad habits.

                      Like it or not, bad habits are bad for you — mentally, physically, emotionally and even socially in some cases. While some bad habits are harder to quit than others, it doesn’t change the fact that you need to get rid of them. Here are 13 bad habits to quit right away:

                      1. Stress Eating

                      I used to be a serious stress eater. I would eat whenever I felt unhappy, stressed, disappointed, anxious, or even… happy! My eating had nothing to do with being hungry, and everything to do with using food to fill my emotional voids.

                      While eating would comfort me, this feeling was momentary and would disappear right after I was done eating. Instead, what I had left would be the same emotional void that triggered me to eat in the first place (be it unhappiness or stress), a 2,000 excess calorie intake over what I should have eaten for the day, and anger at myself for having stress ate.

                      I’ve since overcome stress eating. I have healthy eating habits and a healthy relationship with food today where I no longer use food as a tool to fill my emotions.

                      If you are a stress eater, don’t fret — here’s how to manage your stress better:

                      How to Manage Stress (A Step-by-Step Guide to Turn Stress Into Success)

                      2. Nail Biting

                      Not only is nail biting unhygienic, it is also socially repelling, leads to dental problems like malocclusion of the anterior teeth,[1] potentially cause stomach problems,[2] and lead to severely deformed fingernails in the long run.

                      People who bite their nails tend to have shorter nails than the average person; their nail plates also experience scarring and may eventually become absent.[3]

                      Understand what triggers your nail biting behavior and replace it with another neutral to positive habit. Make habits to break habits.

                      For example, if you bite your nails when you are stressed, go for a walk or listen to music instead the next time you feel stressed.

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                      3. Hanging out with Naysayers

                      We all know these people — people who play devil’s advocate to every idea you have and every goal you want to pursue. We are already our greatest self-critics, so it doesn’t help when there’s someone beside us, ever ready to pounce on what we say and tear it down.

                      Hang out less with these naysayers and spend more time with supportive people who share constructive feedback instead. You will be much happier this way.

                      Learn how to get rid of naysayers with these 10 Ways to Ignore the Naysayers and Achieve Your Dreams.

                      4. Being with People Who Don’t Appreciate You

                      Haven’t all of us been in this situation before? Trying to please people who don’t appreciate us? Bending over backwards to be there for people when they are never there for us?

                      While we give without expectations of return, we need to draw a line with people who don’t value us because these people damage our souls.

                      Stop spending time with people who don’t appreciate you, and spend more time with people who do instead.

                      Unsure who you should get rid of? Learn about it here: 5 Kinds of Toxic People That You Need to Get Rid of Now

                      5. Smoking

                      Smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death globally.[4]

                      In just the United States alone, about 500,000 deaths are attributed to smoking-related diseases annually. A recent study estimated that as much as one-third of China’s male population will have significantly shortened life-spans due to smoking! Gender-wise, male and female smokers lose an average of 13.2 and 14.5 years of life respectively — that’s over a decade of life right there.[5]

                      Not only that, smoking causes pre-mature skin aging (i.e. wrinkles), yellowing of teeth, bad breath, and worse of all — jeopardy of the health of people around you, including your loved ones. Studies have shown that non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke are at risk to many of the health problems associated with direct smoking.[6]

                      Smoking risks

                        6. Excessive Drinking

                        All of us know that drinking too much alcohol is bad for us, but do you know how bad it really is?

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                        According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking too much — be it on a single occasion or over time — can seriously damage your health:[7]

                        • Brain problems: Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways, making it harder to think clearly and move with coordination.
                        • Heart diseases: Cardiomyopathy – Stretching and drooping of heart muscle, Arrhythmias – Irregular heart beat, stroke, high blood pressure
                        • Liver diseases: Steatosis or fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, cirrhosis
                        • Pancreas problems: Pancreatitis, a dangerous inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels in the pancreas that prevents proper digestion.
                        • Different types of cancer: Mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, breast

                        If you drink a lot, perhaps cutting it out right away will be tough. Cut down the number of glasses you drink each time, followed by the number of times you drink a week.

                        If need be, seek help from an AA group — you aren’t alone in this. Change starts from today.

                        7. Eating Junk Food (Including Diet Soda)

                        Junk food — they are everywhere in our society today. From McDonald’s, to KFC, to Burger King, to 24-hour takeouts, junk food such as fries, highly processed burgers and sodas has become a staple in our society today.

                        If you think, “Hey, but junk food is tasty!”, think again:

                        A study by Paul Johnson and Paul Kenny suggests that junk food consumption alters brain activity in a way similar to addictive drugs like cocaine and heroin.[8]

                        “After many weeks with unlimited access to junk food, the pleasure centers of rat brains became desensitized, requiring more food for pleasure.”

                        And you wonder why you seem to crave fast food when you just had some the day before?

                        While it may not be possible to remove junk food completely from our diet right away, we can reduce our junk food consumption starting today. Instead of soda, opt for a fruit juice (fresh juice, not the carbonated kind) or mineral water. Instead of fries, switch to mashed potato, a salad, or rice (many food outlets allow for this today). Instead of a fried meat patty, go for a grilled one.

                        Where possible, opt for healthy food joints like salad bars and delis as opposed to fast food outlets. Every little step goes a long way.

                        Here’re some healthy snacks ideas for you: 15 Healthy Snacks You Should Always Have At Home

                        8. Eating Too Much Red Meat

                        There has been conclusive evidence that consumption of red meat increases the risk of colorectal cancer; and suggestive evidence that it increases the risk of oesophageal cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and endometrial cancer.

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                        In addition, some studies have linked consumption of large quantities of red meat with breast cancer, stomach cancer, lymphoma, bladder cancer, lung cancer and prostate cancer![9]

                        Personally, I’m a vegetarian so I don’t consume red meat, but for those of you who consume red meat, do watch out and limit your intake — better still, cut it out of your diet. World Cancer Research Fund recommends limiting intake of red meat to less than 300g (11 oz) cooked weight per week, “very little, if any of which to be processed.”

                        Of if you’re thinking about becoming a vegetarian, check out this guide: 5 Practical Tips For Starting a Vegetarian Lifestyle

                        9. Watching Too Much TV

                        I stopped watching TV since eight years ago and I have never regretted it. Every once in a while I will switch on the telly to see what is on, and then I will switch it off because it’s just the same boring shtick over and over again.

                        Watching TV, particularly well-written dramas, can be a good way to unwind. However, remember that TV isn’t your life.

                        Spending three hours every night watching TV will not change your life for the better. Rather, using that time to reflect on your life, take stock, and take action on your goals will.

                        It’s not easy to remove TV from your daily routine right away, but follow these 6 Steps To Remove TV From Your Life.

                        10. Being Late

                        Not only is being late being rude to others, it also means that you’re always rushing from one place to another, playing catch up in your agenda, and having to apologize to every person you meet.

                        Stop being late and not being punctual, but practice being early instead. Target to arrive 15 minutes earlier before any appointment and bring along something to do in those 15 minutes (or longer if the other person turns out to be late). Then you can stop playing catch up and stay ahead in life.

                        Learn more tips about how to be more punctual here: How to Be On Time Every Time

                        11. Being in Bad Relationships

                        Are you always dating the wrong guys/girls? Do you end up with jerks all the time? Well, you may not be able to stop yourself from meeting bad partners but you can certainly stop yourself from furthering contact with them, spending time with them, or even… entering into a relationship with them.

                        I used to invest myself in this guy who was nothing but toxic for me. After a good five months of experiencing nothing but getting burned over and over again, I realized that he was a total waste of my time and I deserved better. I decided to cut him off, and it was soon after that I met my soulmate.

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                        Learn about why you shouldn’t stay in a bad relationship and how to deal with it if you’re in one: Why Trying Hard to Stay in an Unhappy Relationship Is Not Love, but Fear

                        12. Leaving Things to the Last Minute

                        Burning the midnight oil isn’t fun — it’s exhausting.

                        Those of you who got through college by burning the midnight oil would have learned this the hard way. Not only is it damaging for your body, it is also mentally draining as you’re constantly in a hyper-tense mode, feeling anxious about whether you can finish your work on time.

                        Start today on a new note. Rather than react to your deadlines, be proactive about them by planning ahead, identifying what needs to be done for the week, and getting things done in advance.

                        By staying ahead of your tasks, you can also use your extra time to plan ahead in your life and get more things done.

                        Take a look at this guide and learn how to stop procrastinating: Procrastination – A Step-By-Step Guide to Stop Procrastinating

                        13. Focusing on the Negatives

                        In every situation, there are two ways you can react: zoom down to the problem areas and crib about how things aren’t the way you want, or celebrate the areas that are going well and work on making everything better.

                        Many of us see the importance of doing the latter but in practice, we do the former. Why though? Criticizing and focusing on the negatives is easy but it doesn’t empower nor inspire us to be better.

                        Make a change — for every negative encounter you run into, I challenge you to identify three things that are good about it. Practice doing this for one week, and by the end of the week you’ll find that your first instinct is to think positive, not negative.

                        And here’re even more ways to help you stay positive: 11 Tips for Maintaining your Positive Attitude

                        The Bottom Line

                        So here you find the 13 most common bad habits and their consequences on your mind and body. The good news’ you can quit them all.

                        Just spot out your own bad habits and take my suggestions to quit them. Then you’ll find your life a lot healthier and happier!

                        Need more tips to break your bad habits? Check out these articles:

                        Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                        Reference

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