Updated: Jul 25
Check out these 12 things that extraordinary families don’t do so that you too can become a more extraordinary family.
Extraordinary families have specific habits and routines they do regularly. They also have things they don't do. Extraordinary parents manage their emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in ways that set them up for success in life. Then they model and teach their children in small ways on a daily and weekly basis.
Check out these things that extraordinary families don’t do so that you too can become a more extraordinary family.
1. They don't live in Victimville
Blaming your kids for 'making you mad'; blaming a 'label' (like ADHD or dyslexia) for a lack of success; or believing that some people are luckier than others (they won the lottery on good kids while I lost) are all forms of a 'victim mentality'. Extraordinary families don't say things like "why does this always happen to me?" They focus on finding solutions instead of pointing out problems and they teach their kids how to do this too.
2. They don't seek ease and comfort or avoid pain and discomfort.
"When you're hard on yourself, life will be easier on you." This is the motto extraordinary families live by. Do something every day to make at least a part of each day hard on purpose so that you're mentally and physically prepared for the obstacles and challenges of life. Extraordinary families do hard things every day instead of seeking to be comfortable or entertained. And they don't rescue their children from the discomforts, pains, and ugliness of life.
3. They don't stuff or vomit emotions.
Family life is a laboratory of interpersonal relationships. There is bound to be a wide range of emotions. Extraordinary families don't stuff or hide their emotions so that they later 'vomit' them in a fit of anger or frustration onto unsuspecting family members. Instead, they practice daily awareness to recognize and process their emotions as they arise.
4. They don't have bad days.
Extraordinary families face the same challenges that all families do. But they choose to respond differently. Instead of having a 'bad day' or 'waking up on the wrong side of the bed' and letting it upset their mood, they learn to choose how they want to feel each morning. When they face stress and frustration throughout the day they process it right then so they can get back to the state of being and feeling they want to be in.
5. They don't punish for mistakes.
Mistakes are a natural part of life and how we learn as we grow. No parent could imagine scolding their child for taking an imperfect first step. Yet we get mad at our kids for being messy or for forgetting something or for breaking things. Extraordinary parents see mistakes as an opportunity to learn, not to punish.
6. They don't use shaming or punishment.
Shaming your kids or making them feel bad for the way they do things or for messing up or for disappointing you is one of the worst ways to parent. So is punishing your child. Extraordinary families use systems and training, instead of punishment and shaming, which focuses on trying to control and guilt your child into good behavior instead of teaching them.
7. They don't have fixed mindsets.
Extraordinary families don't believe that they or their children or born with fixed traits like intelligence, skills, or talent. Instead, they have a growth mindset that believes their talents, intelligence, and skills can be consistently developed through learning, effort, and persistence.
8. They don't fear change and novelty.
Extraordinary families aren't afraid to change -- the food they eat, the books they read, the movies they watch, the place they live. They WANT change and novelty because they know it leads to more life experience, new neural connections, and more dopamine hits (the good kind that make you high on life!) Fear and doubt are traitors that keep them from living life at it's fullest.
9. They don't stay in guilt or avoid responsibility.
Extraordinary parents aren't anti-guilt advocates. Guilt is a helpful tool when you use it as motivation to change. But you should never live in a chronic state of guilt. That's not healthy. Yes, you make mistakes and mess up and so do your kids. Take ownership of your mistakes, recognize the guilt, and then commit to doing better and let go of it. When you mess up again, repeat this process.
10. They don't let their kids make the rules.
Kids are not in charge. PARENTS are in charge. Extraordinary parents don't say things like, "I'm exhausted keeping up with the housework and my kids won't help because they would rather play video games or text their friends all day." Duh. Of course they would. But the parents make the rules. If the kids don't help then no video games. It's common sense but not common practice.
11. They don't live life in survival mode.
Life gets crazy sometimes. A new baby, a move, a pandemic. So we go into survival mode to make it through. But we're not meant to live in survival mode. Extraordinary families get out of survival mode as soon as possible and into intentional mode. They direct and lead a life they LOVE instead of just managing one they don't like.
12. They don't lose sight of their bigger vision.
"Without a vision, the family perishes." Extraordinary families have big goals and dreams that they consistently pursue together. Having a shared vision helps to unite you in a cause that is bigger than your family. It also provides a massive sense of meaning and purpose to an otherwise ordinary life.