What is your vision of the possibilities for your young children and adolescents? What are your hopes and dreams for them? What critical life skills do you think they will need to realize that vision?
Is your vision for your children to find their own unique potential in life, and feel good about it?
Of course! Every parent wishes their children to know who they really are, and who they can become.
You can teach your young kids and adolescents how to develop mental and emotional flexibility in their lives so they become who they are capable of becoming, leading them to successful and meaningful lives.
Consider these points as you ponder how you can help your children along the way so they can reach their potential:
What is your family culture? Is it intentional? What family principles are you teaching and modeling for your young children and adolescents? Is your family culture providing your children with an opportunity to thrive, be inspired to become flexible as they encounter challenges, and find meaning despite struggles?
Most likely, you are doing your best as a parent. As you do, please remember to focus on progress, not perfection.
As a parent, you can become a facilitator for your children’s experiences that will affirm, reinforce, and allow your young kids and adolescents to learn principles that will allow them to find meaning in life. The experiences they have will provide opportunities to recognize they can indeed reach their full potential.
Experiences are the “bridge” between the core family principles
you are teaching and the beliefs you desire your children to internalize.
What are your child’s beliefs about themselves? Are you aware? Those beliefs become a lens through which they see themselves and life in general. The opportunities for them to experience difficulties and successes can create their mindset about themselves and their life. After years of research about the human mind and behavior, renowned Harvard psychologist William James said, “People tend to become what they think of themselves.”
How are you contributing to helping your young kids and adolescents have the “right” experiences to develop a flexible mindset so they can find meaning and vitality in their lives?
The mind is at the core of everything we do. If the mind is flexible, there is nothing we cannot achieve. So many people neglect the mind, ignore it, or treat it as part of our DNA, believing that it will take care of itself. Not true, the mind needs to be trained. If it doesn’t get exercised, atrophy kicks in.
How are you practicing flexibility in your life?
- Model flexibility for them. For example, when you make a mistake, how do you respond to it in front of your children? Are they noticing how you treat yourself in times of stress or when you’ve made mistakes?
- When events don’t turn out the way you wish they had, are you willing to look at other options, acknowledge your thoughts and feelings that arise when this happens?
- On rough parenting days, please remind yourself that you really are doing better than you think you are.
- Do not compare yourself with other parents, or your kids with other kids.
- Remember that the road to parenting success is always under construction, so just keep working and moving forward.
“My father didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” –Clarence Budinton Kelland
Photo by Alexis Brown