As parents and caregivers, our goal is for our children to be successful and happy, yet the way to lead them to achieve these goals is not so clear.
Parenting styles vary, and we all strive to do our best, but we need to be careful not to fall into extremes: On one side we can step back and let our child learn and achieve everything by himself, not providing the support and nourishing they may need along the way. On the other hand we can be so involved in their upbringing that we micromanage every aspect of their life. Believing that micromanaging their life will make them successful, falling into a scheme that makes them feel incapable of making their own decisions.
We must be involved in their upbringing, we want them to be confident, motivated and happy. Confidence comes from our unconditional love, as well as from the knowledge that their own actions lead to outcomes. Our children need to be the architects of their success and this is achieved through their own thinking, planning, decision making, doing, wishing, coping, trying new things, failing sometimes and getting back on track, dreaming and experiencing life for themselves.
We certainly want to be there along the way, giving advice when asked, providing support, and most of all, showing we care and we love them regardless. But we must not fall into the role of micromanager and anxious parent, being anxious and worried about their future success in this complex world. It is this anxiety that will encourage us to make them do and perfectly succeed in every single requirement we believe they need for their successful future; like getting “A’s” in school, doing after-school activities that will make them look good in their resume, excelling in sports and never eating an unhealthy food, nor wasting any time idly.
Our job is to provide a nourishing environment, to strengthen them by making them responsible, and to love them unconditionally so they can love others and receive love*. Their life choices are up to them, it is their job to decide their career and other major life choices, it is ours to support them in becoming the best of themselves.