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Fear of Failure In Children

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Fear of Making Mistakes

What are you doing??
Are you crazy?
Don't you know that this is wrong?
Hey, don’t touch the microwave; do you want to burn your hands?
No, this is wrong, are you stupid?

Do these phrases sound familiar? Well, they weren’t familiar at all to that baby who was hearing them and wondering why everyone is shouting at him.

If a child was raised in an environment where people always shout at him and call him names he may end up fearing to try anything new as a grown up.

If each time he did something wrong his parents shouted at him he may start to think that it’s shameful to make mistakes and as a result he may be afraid to try anything new.

Fear of Failure In children

Children are never born with fear of failure but they learn it from their parents.

Just look at how a child falls tens of times yet tries to stand up again without feeling bad. It’s our attitude as parents that teaches him how to be afraid. If you kept shouting at your child at every single mistake or if you kept frightening him whenever he was about to do something wrong then he will grow up as an insecure adult. He would fear making mistakes and would fear failure.

Children are born with loads of courage, persistence, positive attitude and self confidence. It’s us who teach them how to become something else.

What should parents teach their children about making mistakes

A parent must let his child understand that making mistakes is an important step in any learning process. We humans learn by doing the wrong things many times until we find out the right way to do something.

Now when a parent teaches a child that fact instead of scolding him whenever he makes a mistake the child will grow up having more confidence in his abilities and he won't feel bad if he failed.

Making a mistake Vs being the mistake

The other problem that might arise as a result of this attitude is severe lack of self confidence. After all if the child believed that making a mistakes is a real bad thing he will always end up losing his self confidence after he finds that he makes lots of them.

All human beings make mistakes but those who believe that their mistakes make them inadequate end up losing their self confidence as a result of making them.

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