Wes and I were at a conference these last two days called, "Parenting with Love and Logic" and I have to tell you~ it was fabulous! It was run by Jim Fay and his son, Charles ~ what a team! As far as we're concerned, the more tools you have in your tool belt, the better prepared you will be to pull out what you need and make something work...like your parenting. That's why, even though we are certified as parent coaches through the John Rosemond Institute, we attended this workshop in Michigan. The gist of this philosophy is that kids crave the very same limits that they argue with us the most about...and our children will learn to make great decisions about big, important things by making bad decisions about the little things in life! Our mistake, as parents, is that often we are worried about letting them make even little bad decisions. But common sense reminds us all of decisions we've made before and the consequences that we paid so that we can steer clear of those same bad decisions in the future. Personal responsibility was a huge part of the Love and Logic curriculum ~ allowing your children to take responsibility for the decisions they make.
The fact is, our kids will either pay now, or pay later! We need to figure out how we can help our kids make good decisions when no one is watching, deal with temptation, and navigate in this crazy world without us, because, eventually~ they will not have us with them physically at every crossroad when they need to make important decisions. They need to have a picture of us in their hearts and hear our voices in their heads urging them to follow the right path that we have taught them to walk down even when we are not there!
We heard wisdom echoed at this conference that we have been teaching from John Rosemond: things like~ when we do too much for our kids, they don't learn to do for themselves~ Yes! Don't get dragged into problems that aren't yours. Yes! Make sure the monkey is on the right back! Yes! Don't go for having the trophy kids...Ah! You're moving in the right direction if you can stay calm, but you have to allow struggle to take place. Alright. When you empower people and they learn to grapple with issues, it will feel bad at first. Undoubtedly. That is the only way to raise strong kids and educate them to persevere!
What a wonderful opportunity to reinforce the strategies and philosophies that we have been using all along. Is there any greater gift than allowing our loved ones to struggle but send a message: I love you deeply but I know you can do this! YOU can do this...Our goal is to train our kids to eventually NOT need us anymore. It sounds heartwrenching, but if that happens, we can pat ourselves on the back and rest assured that they will be just fine!
More next time!
Ann Van De Water, Author of MOMMY MEMOIRS
Certified Leadership Parenting Coach~ (check out www.ParentGuru.com)
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