“How do I teach my child to be successful?” It is one thing many parents ask themselves over and over again.
Parents often want to do the best that they can for their children: provide them with a proper education, give them love and quality time, and that financial backing they may need later on in life are a few of the things that come to mind. Some parents also have this unconscious need to pass down information to their children, such as how to keep organized and how to handle bully’s at school and so on. But one of the trends that appear to be popular is for parents to provide their children with as much money as possible so that they are set up for success later in life.
Taking a cue from nature, I am not sure this is the best approach. For one, children may lose out on gaining valuable know-how on taking care of themselves and two, this isn’t a behavior that occurs naturally in nature. For example, if you observe a momma bear in the wild, she doesn’t go down to the river and hunt all the fish she can so that her cub never has to fish: instead, she teaches her cub how to fish so he can be self-sustainable.
One Lesson To Teach My Child To Be Successful In Life
You know that old saying about how you can give a man a fish or teach a man to fish? I think the same principle applies to parenting. Teaching our children to be respond-able is a major key to success in my opinion.
A couple of years ago, my daughter came home from school upset because she was being “bullied” by some of the other children. In a knee-jerk reaction, my momma claws came out ready to draw blood but retracted when I remembered the above-mentioned lesson in respond-ability. Instead of calling the principal of her school and reacting in an unpleasant and over-emotional manner, I sat down with my daughter to troubleshoot some of the issues she was experiencing and to get a better understanding of what was going on.
I asked her questions such as, “How did the other children bully you,” and “What do you think you can do to get them to stop bullying you?” After a few minutes, she had a small list of ways she could respond to the situation. I did tell her teacher and principal of what was going on in the classroom, but I also explained to them that I wanted her to figure out solutions for herself. It goes without saying the staff of her school was happy that I wasn’t blaming them for what other children were doing (which is something that happens a lot nowadays). If I keep saving her as a mother, she may never gain the tools and confidence necessary to take life by the horns and carve out the future she wants.
Being Respond-able in Difficult Situations
So why teach our children to be respond-able? How does this teach my child to be successful later on in life?
Nature has a way of rewarding those who take responsibility. An alpha male lion watches over his pride, protects it and the young from outsiders and also gets all the females to himself (bow chicka wow wow). While they may appear to not do much work (the females do all the hunting and he is the first to eat – what is that all about?), male lions actually have it a lot rougher than female lions. If they don’t stay at the top of their game, another male will come along, take over his pride, kill his offspring and if he isn’t killed in the process, he becomes an outcast which has a significant impact on his chances of survival. But I digress!
The alpha female lions also are rewarded for being leaders in their pack. They are the shot-callers and usually have one of the other lionesses watch over their brood while they go out on the hunt. In short, alphas are very respond-able creatures and as such, they are rewarded for being so.
Being respond-able isn’t without some risks. In fact, the more respond-able you are the more risks you may get! In the words of one of my mentors, “When you solve a problem, you are rewarded with a bigger problem.” But hey, bigger problems often mean bigger dollars!
For example, a CEO of a major company takes more responsibility than an entry-level worker. The CEO is also accountable for a whole lot more than an entry-level worker and usually gets a higher salary because of his or her ability to lead. They are willing to lead the whole organization to success and take all the risks that come with the position: of course they are going to get paid more!
Coming back to children, teaching children how to be respond-able in difficult situations is a great way to set them up for success AND it is a skill they can use for the rest of their lives. They learn problem-solving, critical thinking and learn how to be self-reliant in times of stress.
Whether success means having a happy life-long marriage, reaching your career goals, leading a healthy lifestyle, or being as happy as possible in your day-to-day affairs, one’s ability to respond to situations is a key.
I know what you are thinking, “How do I teach my child to be successful? How can I teach them respond-ability?” There are so many different ways that it is too much to list here. My suggestion? Ask yourself this question every day and watch how the answers pop up on their own. OR, if you are a woman who is over 21 years of age, come and have a chat with me out our next Ladies’ Night Out in Springfield, Missouri! It will be a fun women-only schmooze-fest where we can connect, meet other awesome ladies in town, and relax! Check out when the next one is here, and let’s brainstorm together on how to teach our children to be successful. I look forward to seeing you there!
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