Raising a well-balanced child: How do you define success?
Balance. This is the value that affords fulfillment and peace.
Here’s a secret: I’m not a perfect parent. In fact, I’m not perfect at anything. Nor am I worried about being perfect. Instead, what I strive for every day is to find balance in my life and in my parenting.
This perspective gives me the space to honor myself exactly where I am. Why am I ok with this? Because when I model this behavior and give permission to myself, I am giving my children this same gift of grace.
What I want for my children (and myself) is to be happy and content today and every day. Not only when they meet the next big milestone, enter the next grade, or ace a big test. No, I want them to be happy in this very moment. So often we, ourselves strive to achieve & accomplish, and forget to stop and celebrate. Achievement is important, but balance coupled with achievement allows for fulfillment.
Finding balance doesn’t mean our kids won’t strive for excellence or they will lose their drive and determination. Rather, balance gives our children access to an even greater power – the power to appreciate themselves for exactly who they are.
We want our children to be driven. We want them to pursue their passion and to push for the sake of growing the amazing person they already are. What we do not want is for them to be driven for the sake of running away from themselves and striving for better because they aren’t enough right now.
But how do we do this?
We must always start with ourselves. Begin by asking yourself:
• What are my values?
• What does balance mean in my life?
• Why is balance important to me?
Then, work WITH your child to uncover their unique responses based on your shared family values and those unique to them.
Challenge: Talk with your kids about what balance is and where do they feel both balanced and imbalanced in their lives.