Smart Way #39: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you!

Have you heard the saying, ‘familiarity breeds contempt’? It means that the more familiar you are with a person, the easier it is to take them for granted and become critical.

It often happens within families, and especially between parents and their children.

The truth is, no one is above being a little devious. We’re all capable of using another’s weakness to our own advantage. But when these behaviours form a pattern, I call them ‘Standard Operating Practices’ (SOPs).

Parents are particularly easy prey because they love their kids so much. By the time you get to late teens or early twenties, you’ve got those SOPs down pat! But know this: SOPs ultimately build distrust and distance between you and the people whose support you need now and in the future. Hence the phrase ‘don’t bite the hand that feeds you’.

If you’re not aware of some of the ways in which you’re operating with your parents and carers, ask yourself these questions:

– Do you threaten to withdraw affection and approval if you don’t get what you want?

-Do you undermine others’ confidence by making them out to be losers?

-Do you constantly blame others for your own mistakes?

Know that using SOP’s to get through your young life is unhealthy and, ironically, it will come back to bite you. Understand more by reading the full list of SOPs in Smart Way #39 of Making It on My Own; 52 Smart Ways to Smash It in the Real World.