So what can parents do with their young children now to build strong character and lead children away from materialism?
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Be confident of your rightful authority as a parent and insist that your children respect it. Your responsibility as a parent is enormous, and you must exercise a self-confident loving authority to carry it out. Your children's confidence in your leadership will derive from your own self-confident sense of mission.
Remember that you're raising adults, not children. When you think of your children's future, picture character as well as career. Your job is not to keep children amused and busy.
It is, rather, to lead your children to become competent, responsible, considerate, and generous men and women who are committed to live by principles of integrity. Think of what your children will be , not just what they will do. Teach the great character strengths virtues : prudence, justice, fortitude, temperance, and charity. In today's terms, these are called sound judgment and conscience, a sense of responsibility, courageous perseverance, self-mastery, and respect for the rights and sensibilities of others.
Which poses the next question: do you really want to be beside them for their every waking minute in order to make sure they actually you make that decision because if you are with them making every decision for them they will never learn how to do it for themselves. In a nutshell, all parents want their children to make the right choice especially in their absence.
Therapeutic Parenting in a Nutshell: Positives and Pitfalls by Sarah Naish
Our parenting style, their basic temperament, the respect we have and show our children, the encouragement we give our children, their experience and much more, all shapes them into being who they are. When they have had to face the consequences of their actions, when they fail and then work out for themselves how to get it right next time, when they have learned to tolerate frustration, delay gratification, live within limits and boundaries, they will develop resilience. If we continue to rescue our children and do everything for them and be an over-efficient PA to them, how can we expect them to do things with confidence and make the right decision or wise choice?
As they get older, the stakes get higher and they have to have been given an opportunity to develop and acquire these skills during the different ages and stages in their lives in order for them to be able to cope with the higher staked situations. The bottom line is this: you will trust your child to make the right decision or wise choice when you have the confidence in your child to be able to make that right decision or wise choice. Children have to be given the opportunity to learn and acquire these skills and as parents, the most crippling thing we can do for our children is to rob them of this opportunity.
As the stakes get higher, the thought of them making monumental mistakes that may considerably negatively impact their future is a terrifying prospect for parents. Raising your child well will hopefully foster in them some of the essential life skills to allow them to continue their journey into adulthood as well connected, grounded, sensible, safe, responsible, sociable and respectful individuals. Are you stuck with your parenting and feel like you need a boost? Have you ever given much thought to how you react to things?
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