One of my favourite parenting stories is about a famous research scientist who made several important medical breakthroughs.
He was asked by a journalist why he was so successful & he told the story of a very early lesson he learnt from his Mum when he dropped a carton of milk in the kitchen.
Instead of shouting at him she said, “What a wonderful mess you’ve made – what a huge great big puddle! I bet you’d love to play in that great big white milky puddle. Go on then – have some fun before we clean it all up!”
After about 10 minutes his Mum came back & continued,” Well, you’ve had your fun so it’s time to clear it all up. So, how would you like to do it- with a towel, a mop or a sponge?”
They both spent some time on the clean up operation & then his Mum did a remarkable thing in my opinion that changed the little boy’s destiny. She said, “Let’s go out in the garden and fill up the carton a few times so you can practise carrying it properly.”
The famous scientist remarked to the journalist that he knew right then & there, that it was OK to make mistakes & he didn’t have to be afraid of failing. He learned that his mistakes were just opportunities for learning something new.
What an amazing story and a remarkable Mum – transforming her perception of an accident & a mistake into a lifelong learning lesson.
Successful parents realise that making mistakes & getting things wrong is a really natural & important part in their child’s learning.
They know that minor failures & set backs are just the way we all learn – by trial & error. I call it “failing forward” because being willing to learn from mistakes & blips helps you build resilience, confidence & a iCan attitude so you constantly keep moving forward.
Every experience will teach you something if you are open minded & willing to let it.
So here are a few phrases to help kids grow from mistakes.
🎈Oops! That’s a little hiccup. What can we do to make it right?
🎈 Remember, even famous scientists made ‘mix-takes’ before discovering something amazing❣️
🎈 You’re a ‘mistake magician,’ turning oops into tada❣️
🎈 Mistakes are our ‘oopsportunities’
🎈 Keep calm & let’s learn from your ‘blunder-ful’ moment❣️
🎈Mistakes are like treasure maps. They lead us to hidden treasures of wisdom.
🎈Making mistakes is like taking a detour on the road to success – you still get there in the end
🎈Let’s give our mistakes a makeover & turn them into something fabulous❣️
🎈 Embrace your ‘mistake mojo,’ it’s your secret superpower❣️
🎈Mistakes are the colourful sprinkles on the ice cream cone of life – they make it more interesting❣️
I often talk about ‘failing forward’ when I am coaching parents and here is my article on “Failing” that was published on the Jo Frost Super Nanny site