There is no greater love than the one parents have for their kids. That’s why we would love to shelter them forever from everything that is waiting for them out in “the real world”.
However, protecting them from every little thing won’t do them any good.
The role of parents is to prepare their kids for what awaits them out there and to encourage them to dream and reach out for their dreams.
The more they dream, and the more they work to make their dreams come true, the greater the chances for them to be successful and accomplished adults.
Here is how you can help with that.
The first thing to teach your little ones is that there’s no such thing as impossible.
Don’t be intimidated by their big dreams, especially while they are still young.
So what if your boy doesn’t have much of a chance to become an astronaut?
As long as he believes it, he will work towards achieving this goal, and while that goal may stay out of his reach, he may still achieve the next best thing.
It’s your role not to contain their dreams in boxes, but to let them grow freely.
While fantasies and dreams are an essential part of a kid’s mind, responsibility needs to be taught.
This doesn’t happen overnight, though. With little kids, it’s something that can be turned into a game, e.g. organize dish-washing competition every day after lunch, and before you know it, your kids will adopt this as a routine.
Parents are often afraid to let go of their kids and they’re keeping them in a bubble.
However, that can do them more harm than good. Allow your children to run around, even if that means they will sometimes fall.
Let them figure out some emotional and mental challenges on their own.
Your role is just to be there in case they need help.
Children look up to their parents looking for support rather than love, so don’t ever try to discourage them from going after their dreams, regardless how silly they may appear to you.
If your kids are interested in something, do whatever you can to encourage their interests.
For example, buy an instrument for a kid who’s into music or art supplies for a painting enthusiast.
Education is the safest road towards success, and the foundation for good academic performance rests on it. Knowing how to learn is a skill children acquire early on when they still see learning as a game.
It’s imperative not to let that excitement over new knowledge fade away by turning learning into something fun and engaging.
Speaking of education, when your children reach a certain age, you are no longer in charge of steering their way without their participation. It is up to them to choose a career path they want to follow, which includes deciding about the college degree.
All you need to do is to help with those more complicated things, such as finding college ROI rankings and other useful information that may make it easier for them to choose one college over another.
As we’ve repeatedly mentioned, parents shouldn’t force their kids to dream this or that or go after this career path or that.
Your role as their guardian is far more important: you need to know how to listen to them, from the very moment they say their first word to the “big decision” moments when it comes to college.
Listening helps them feel more confident and helps you to give them a good piece of advice without attacking their opinion.
Last, but not least. In order to motivate your kids to follow their dreams, you must do the same.
Kids acquire most of their knowledge by imitating adults, so if you show them you lack confidence and desire to succeed, they are highly likely to build a similar attitude toward life.
If on the other hand, your children see that you are willing to stand up for yourself, fight for what belongs to you, have a strong sense of self-worth and do your best to continue self-improvement each day, they will pick up the best of what they see.
This, of course, doesn’t mean that you need to be power-hungry with the goal to succeed at any cost.
As parents, we always see the best in our kids, but we must understand that the rest of the people won’t look at them through our eyes.
That’s why it’s important to encourage our kids to dream big and believe in themselves enough to make those dreams come true.