How to Encourage Your Kids to Keep Moving Forward

Do you ever give your kids time outs? Time outs to refresh and regroup can be so, so valuable both for kids and for us. Read the full post at

“Around here, however, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we're curious... and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” — Walt Disney

One of my favorite quotes in a Disney movie occurs at the conclusion of Meet The Robinsons.  It can be applied to all areas of life as well as to adults and children.

The rear view mirror can be your friend if you’re using it to see how far you’ve come. However, it can be your enemy if you’re looking back with regret, doubt, and criticism.

It's best to leave the past exactly where it is. . . in the past!

Think of how a toddler learns to walk. They stand up…take a few steps…stumble and fall.and they get right back up and try again. They keep moving forward. They don’t think, “I’ve fallen and I’ve failed, so I might as well just sit here in my diaper and cry!”

Toddlers are driven by the curiosity to explore, by a drive to succeed, and by a passion for life! So they get back up, and soon those little legs are running, taking them to new adventures.

We also need to take care not to thwart our children’s curiosity and drive to succeed. As they explore their world, they make mistakes. That’s how they learn. When they’re learning to walk, we clap and smile and encourage them to keep moving forward, even when they stumble.

But at some point, as they grow older and attempt more independence, our default response to their stumbles changes and becomes more stifling. “Sit down and be quiet.” “You should have known better!” “That’s just what happens when you disobey!” Slowly, they lose their joy in pushing their limits and, while they may continue down new paths, they do so more hesitantly, looking in the rear view mirror. Some, like Goob in Meet the Robinsons, who was put down by nearly all around him, lose their joy and sense of worth, and take an unfortunate path.

How to Encourage Your Kids to Keep Moving Forward

So what can we do to help our kids maintain their passionate curiosity and keep moving forward joyfully?

  • First, we can set boundaries and limits for both safety and behavior.

  • Next, we can allow our kids the freedom to stumble and fall within those boundaries.

  • When, not if, they stumble and fall, we can discuss why they stumbled and help them regroup and continue on their path of adventure and discovery.

  • If we make a mistake and, through default mode, leave them on the floor crying, we can apologize, and then keep moving forward together with them.

And speaking of mistakes, as moms, we can’t afford to sit on the floor in our diapers and cry, either. We make mistakes, too. Lot’s of them. But we can’t let our mistakes in the past dictate our present or our future. We need to get up and keep moving forward.

Every day is a do-over, a chance to be a better mom, to love on our kids and partner-and to love on ourselves as well!  Moms, you’ve got this! Just keep moving forward!

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Hi, I'm Beth. I help busy moms ditch the overwhelm and gain confidence, so they can enjoy parenting more, yell less, and have peaceful kids and a happy family.

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