You learn a lot of things growing up. You teach your children a lot of things as they grow up. Your children’s teachers teach them a lot of things as they grow up. Think back to what you learned growing up and how you wish you’d learned differently. Perhaps you were taught it’s best to keep your opinions to yourself or to walk away from conflict, even when you feel it in your gut that something is wrong and it leaves you unsettled and uncomfortable. You might want to take a few of the things you learned growing up and tweak them just a little when you teach your own kids.
Follow the Leader
Your kids will hear this everywhere they go. The class president is the leader you all follow. The line leader is the one to follow. Follow the leader is something everyone learns at some point, but your job as a parent is to make sure this advice isn’t misconstrued. Your kids should follow the line leader but that doesn’t mean they can’t be the leader. It’s better to be the leader in life than to follow someone else.
Again, this is a good idea in a number of situations, but sometimes your kids will find themselves in a position in life when the directions seem wrong and their gut seems right. Follow your gut is a better piece of advice for your kids to live by. After all, they might learn that the directions are to stay out of other people’s business but their gut might tell them to stand up for a child who is being attacked by a bully, even if it isn’t his problem.
Do As I Say
You probably use this one a lot on your kids, but the truth is that your kids should do what they love. You might say, “Be a doctor,” when your child’s passion lies in teaching. Don’t ruin your child’s chance at happiness by telling them to do what you want; let them do what they love.