I get asked this question a lot when I teach. Whether in the class or in the home, as caring adults we want to see our children and students achieve everything that they have the potential of achieving. Sadly, however, our wanting it and their wanting it are not always in line with each other. Here are some things to consider:
Our hopes and dreams are just that - ours. We can encourage and inspire our children and students to embrace their own gifts, talents and strengths, but we must remember that there is a fine line between encouraging and lecturing; between empowerment and expectations.
We cannot work harder to achieve their potential than they are willing to work. Healthy boundaries are vital. Sometimes when our kids are willing to settle for less, we do more for them thinking that that will get the ball rolling and inspire them. Often this backfires and we are left owning their school work, college payments, living space, car or more.
Unconditional love is a must. When our kids know that we will love them no matter how much or how little they want to embrace their learning, activities, and actions - we give them the freedom to figure out life on their terms. If they are happy with less, then maybe we should be too.
HERE is the most interesting phenomenon - when we stop worrying about our kids' potential and long term happiness - while expressing unconditional love - they often will take MORE ownership over their lives and decide that, in the end, they actually do want more and are willing to start working for it!
I have a 2 week, 4 session (1.5 hours a session) Parenting the Love and Logic Way™ class coming beginning Sunday, March 31st. Interested? READ MORE