I am always mindful that I am raising ADULTS… and I do my best to remain conscious to the question of “what kind of ADULT do I want them to be”, and raise them accordingly. I don’t make my parenting decision based on the kind of “child” I want them to be. You can’t raise a quiet, conforming, play-by-the-rules child and then expect them to be a confident, put-my-point-forward, driven, striving, high achieving adult. You’ve got to decide which one you want to raise… the child, or the adult.
You see, the reason I believe most people raise the “child”, is for convenience. Because as an adult, it’s much easier and takes less energy to raise a child that doesn’t challenge us and that just conforms to the way things are and doesn’t buck the system we’ve got in place. It’s much more exhausting to deal with a child who has their own point of view, wants to voice their opinions, and be different. And in those moments where being the kind of parent I want to be clashes with the amount of emotional energy I have in my tank, and head space is low, I consciously remind myself that I am raising the ADULT and I need to encourage the virtues of the adult I want them to be, and reward them for the way they are challenging me. I remind myself that the exhaustion of the moment is only temporary, but the lasting effect of what I do with this moment could be permanent. Do I get it right all the time? Absolutely NOT! But I have learned to be extremely proud rather than frustrated when my children challenge me, or even have the courage to debate with me.
You see, according to society, this is viewed by many as arguing, and “disrespectful” to the parent. But I choose to love it, embrace it, and encourage it. Because one day when there is any other adult who is blocking their way, or when they have a point of view they want to share, I want them to have refined their skills in that conversation so well, that they can handle the situation with respect, with certainty, with posture, and the ability to WIN and not be walked over! Most importantly I want them to feel that are in control of their world and have the ability to influence all of their environments. This will allow them to face life boldly, and make a difference everywhere they go! It teaches them to LEAD, not to follow… and all their power is in their leadership, because we were all BORN TO LEAD!
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