Did you know that our children learn 80% of their behaviours through parental role-modelling?

I didn’t know this and it was quite a surprise to me when I first read this statistic.

It was surprising because for a long time I would talk the talk with my children but not walk the talk!

I would talk to my children about how to be social and how important friends were, yet I myself struggled to make friends and fit in with other Mums!

I would talk to them about how not to get angry and scream yet I would yell at them for small things like spilling their breakfast cereal. I would talk to them about the importance of listening to me, yet I would often brush off their feelings or problems as I was too busy to deal with it!

When I look at this with the statistic in mind, how could I expect my children to be confident, calm and confide in me if I did not model this behaviour to them?

Fortunately (and unfortunately) it all starts with us as Mums. We can mould our own behaviours to not only improve ourselves but to also improve our children’s behaviour.

Our children watch and learn every day from you, the good bits and the not so good bits!

I am a mother to 4 school aged children (primary and secondary school) and throughout the past 14 years of parenting I have found this key piece of information to be the most important in raising happy, confident, healthy and calm children.

In all my experience as a mother and parenting advisor to many Mums, this is the one thing that we work on first and foremost – getting Mum to feel happy within herself and deal with all those inner ‘demons’ that are fogging her current thoughts and actions as a parent and as an individual.

How can we expect our children to be the best version of themselves when we as parents are not?

Here are 3 simple steps to help you become the best version of yourself:

  1. Tame your inner critic – we are often our harshest critics, things we say to ourselves are things we would never say to our worst enemies. Yet we continue daily to treat ourselves in this manner. It is through self-compassion that we learn to appreciate all that we do and all that we are to ourselves and everyone around us.
  2. The perfectionism myth – we often strive to be that perfect mother raising perfect children! Well let me tell you there is no such thing as a perfect parent, it is about parenting from a space of love rather than trying to be perfect. When we parent from love we allow our children to be themselves and we no longer feel the need to compare ourselves to others.
  3. Happiness is an inside job – true happiness comes from within, not from an outside source like a new job, well-behaved kids, a clean house or a happy relationship. When you are feeling happy within yourself you will feel content with wherever you are in life or whatever life brings you.

Become the person you want your children to be!

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com
  • I think I am around 85% the person I want my kids to be. I struggle with a couple of things, but my kids are awesome anyway


  • That’s interesting! Thanks for sharing this!


  • Always best to show the children rather than tell them.


  • That is such great advice! There is no better way than to lead by example.


  • So true, I’m guilty of this all the time. Thanks for sharing it’s made me think about how I am with my kids.


  • I have been guilty of Do as I say and not as i do :(


  • This is so true and something I strive so hard for every single day


  • Great article, one can only try their best.


  • Oh goodness, I feel the pressure of this everyday! I always say “today is going to be a better day, I’m not going to xyz”, and then I’m lucky if we’ve reached mid morning before I’ve already done something I said I wouldn’t do! It can be so infuriating and frustrating parenting children, and with a toddler and preschooler at home full time, my patience and good nature is constantly tested. I like to think I’m doing ok the majority of the time, but it’s hard not to beat yourself up over the few times you do yell or nag or make your kids feel anything but loved and valued.


  • This is a great article and it’s a message that I need to regularly read in order to keep myself on track. I know that I need some real help with keeping my patience with my daughter.


  • Education is best led by example, my kids turned out ok and have a good work ethic.


  • Scary how much these little people take in. It’s important to set a good example through our actions as well as our words. It’s a case of ‘monkey see, monkey do’ with little ones!


  • I’m working on it! This advise has helped thanks.


  • Great article, we are our kids first role model. I try to be a good role model to my kids it is not very easy.


  • You will never realise just how much your kids take in until they turn two and start reliving the last year of your life!!


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