Vince Lombardi said “The leader can never close the gap between himself and the group. If he does, he is no longer what he must be. He must walk a tightrope between the consent he must win and the control he must exert.”
Parenting is very similar to walking a tightrope. As parents we want to raise our children to believe they can accomplish anything. That Sand Castles do exist and they won’t wash away with the tide and we can slay a dragon if we only believe.
At the same time, we need to limit their egos so they aren’t so focused on their own ambition that they will infringe on others in order to obtain them. Their self worth needs to always be at a level that doesn’t allow them to feel superior to others and entitled to flaunt their talents. At the same time we need to not ground them to the point that they doubt themselves and their ability to fulfill their own potential.
As parents we have the ability to instill the optimism that they can make a difference and their dreams can be obtained with the right planning and work. We need to teach them the skills to re-adjust to the obstacles as they arise and find a place where they can live their lives on purpose. As parents when our children are young and we have their respect it is up to us to keep that respect. Part of keeping that respect is controlling situations and not trying to be their friend while they still need us to be their parent. It is a constant tightrope that moves sometimes daily. If we recognize this task early on, as they get older the tightrope we walk seems almost effortless. However, if we fail to do so and wait instead until they are older they will see us struggle and resist more.
Encouraging Our Children’s Dreams
Somewhere in history we stopped doing what we were meant to do, or love to do to support ourselves and started just getting jobs to get by. There has been a shift over the last decade as more people realize while they are doing this job to get by their lives are passing them by. Do we want to raise our children to live the same life, have the same struggle? What if instead we encouraged them to live their passion; to find what they love and then find a way to support themselves and their family doing what they love to do.
It is a sticky place between, you have to work hard and just get a job and work hard. There is an ability to love music and not be skilled enough to play and pursue a career as a musician yet you can strive to own your own studio, be a teacher or write music. The reality is there is always a way to live life doing what you love.
So as a parent we want to raise our children to know their self worth yet never at the expense of others. We want them to see the future they want and to know that it takes work, and if you commit, your dreams can become reality. We want them to respect the rules; they are there for a reason. We want to earn their respect by respecting them and sticking to our guns. Our tightrope may seem long at times, however, the reward is someday we get to come down off the tightrope and hopefully be our children’s friends and listen to their own journey on the tightrope. C.Nordyke