Failing like a dad
There is a right way to fail and a wrong way to fail.
And dad’s you need to show them how to fail the right way.
Too many kids are growing up with the mentality that they have to be perfect – which is unrealistic. Yes, we should always strive for excellence but perfection is an illusion.
Perfection exists in heaven and we’re not there yet.
The burden this puts on kids can be overwhelming what many eventually end up doing is stop trying. It’s easier to quit trying then to keep going through the ups and downs of failure.
Give them the okay to fail.
Show them that you’re approval and love is not tied to the successes. It’s not about trophies and accomplishments but instead an unconditional fatherly love.
Here are three ways that you can do this.
In order for your kids to see that failing is okay, they need a good example.
This means you’re going to have to try new things and when you fail, let them see how you do it. SHow them the right way to fail.
Teach them that you worked hard and that halfhearted mediocre effort was not your goal. But even though you tried you still failed and that was okay.
Failure still hurts but some good can come out of it like learning what not to do next time.
Fail with them.
The best way to teach them how to fail is to walk through it with them.
When you fail together they know both of you are going through the same emotions and they can watch to see how you handle those emotions and learn how it’s done.
No, you won’t get it right every time. You might go off on a rant or get angry and say things you’ll regret. But sometimes you will get it right and you will show them that failing is not always fun but it’s never the end of the world.
They will see you learn the lessons, become better, and try again. And they’ll learn to do the same.
Ask for forgiveness.
If you want to teach your kids that no one is perfect you’ve got to start by admitting that you are wrong sometimes.
- You don’t always get it right.
- You don’t always handle the situation in the best way.
- You let your emotions get the best of you.
And the best way to show them this is by asking for forgiveness.
WHEN you fail, let them know you messed up you failed. Come to them as the imperfect person you are and ask them to forgive you.
The worst thing you can do is to ignore it and act like nothing happened. Even if it’s not your intention, your kids will take it as if you are saying you are never wrong or never fail.
Asking for forgiveness shows them you know you messed, you can admit it, course correct, and life can go on.
Failure is not the end of the world.
In my experience failure is what leads to great moments of growth. Often failure is what can make people better. The lessons we learn and the growth that happens in those moments cannot take place in environments that treat failure as a bad word.
Dads, teach your kids how to fail the right way.