The #1 Requirement Every Adult Needs to be an Exceptional Parent
Over the course of my career I have worked hard to help adults really work at becoming the best parents they can be. I was sitting with a Dad in a restaurant and he asked me a question. What is the one thing I can do to be a great Dad? I said to him let me think about that for a moment. When I got back I said to him “Be their living example. He asked me what I meant and I gave him a general answer. Later, in another session we revisited this question and I told him this. Be as much yourself as you can be. Over the years this has begun to shape my whole philosophy of parenting. I now say the #1 thing every adult needs to be an exceptional parent is Authenticity.
I define authenticity as living a life in which your beliefs, thoughts, words, and actions are all aligned. I say this because 85% of what children carry forward in their lives are the things they observed their parents doing. This is important because; it is not what we say which our children carry forward into life. It is what we do. When we tell our children not to lie. Then ask them to tell someone on the phone we do not want to talk; to tell them I am not here. We confuse them. Ultimately, they will do what we do and not what we said.
There is an old saying “actions speak louder than words”; this is the exactly what children learn. We do and act according to what we really believe. If we say not to lie, and then we lie we have told our children lying is okay. I realize this is an inconvenient truth. However, I truly believe learning to live an authentic life makes a true difference in our lives and the lives of our children. So, how do we live authentically
Becoming authentic is a journey. I have worked on this for years. Here are two links to help you get started. The first is a 500-word Luminary I wrote for Inspire Me Today. The second is the first in my blog series on becoming Authentic. Happy reading!
Believe in Parenting