A few months ago I wrote an article about how your children watch you. We all strive to raise our children to become good, law abiding, successful adults, but we must always be mindful that it’s often who are as people that will have the greatest affect on our children’s future.
Children are quite perceptive. They see and hear things we sometimes wish they wouldn’t. As some parents wage a war on television, advertising, and social influences in order to protect their children from negative forces, it is often those things in the home that will corrupt them the most.
As a parent, how you deal with adversity will rub off on your children. If you lose your temper easily, or treat people badly you likely will do the same with your children, perhaps even worse because they are your children.
Do you get overly emotional in your relationships or frustrated at work? Yes we all do at times, but how we cope with them inadvertently teaches our children how to cope with those situations.
Have you been in a rut? Have you been in the same job forever? Do you go to work then come home and plop on the couch, not wanting to cook dinner or have any interests or hobbies? Children learn to be lazy. They learn to develop ambitions and have goals. They learn them from you. Whether you like it or not you are their role model.
So if you spend your entire time sitting around doing nothing, you’re teaching them doing nothing is okay.
You’d be surprised how much of an influence your parents had on you. I know I certainly look back and find myself saying or doing things that remind me of my parents. Because it was triggered by something they used to do or say.
Your children are learning the same traits from you… good or bad. If you see characteristics developing in your children you don’t like, don’t bark at them to change. Be the change you want them to become.
The absolute best way to motivate and inspire your children is through example. They will admire and respect you if you show them the way. Don’t lie to your children or anyone else. Teach them that telling the truth no matter how hard, is always better than lying.
Get off the couch and do something. Get a hobby or take a course. Always look for ways to continue learning and improve yourself and your children will also develop the desire to become a student of life.
Raising children is an incredible opportunity to inspire the most important people in our lives. They are a living legacy of who we are and what we believe. Ensure that you are someone that your children will want to emulate.
Your children will grow up with a purpose in life and a true sense of identity. Help them develop their own identity, and you’ll enjoy great mutual respect between parent and child.