Not every sunrise is inspiring, not every sunset is beautiful. Yet, when I think of them I am inspired and only remember their beauty.
As a dad, I made many mistakes! I sometimes over-punished. I occasionally let things slide that I shouldn’t have. I missed some important events and many times I was not tuned in to the needs of my children. You, no doubt, are just as guilty.
You may often fail in the day-to-day life of a parent. But what is your overall philosophy, your guiding principles of parenting? It is when they are wrong that you have a real issues in being a parent. Not the little things that reveal we are just human.
Let me guess. You haven’t really formulated guiding principles? As a young parent, I certainly did not. But I wish I had! Unfortunately, not many moms or dads think this parenting thing through. Even so, we all have parenting tendencies. For instance:
Do you let them be who they are?
They all have their own personality. Let them be comfortable in their own skin.
Are you there for them when they need you?
Sometimes being there for them means not helping them. Your children need to face certain things on their own to grow.
Do you really know them?
If you have more than one child, you have to tailor your parenting to their needs and personality. Each child is equal but different.
Do you inspire them?
Support their passions. Encourage imagination. Provide opportunities to grow.
Do you encourage important values?
Respect for others, kindness, honesty, self-reliance are some important values to emphasize.
If you answer YES to all the principles above, then your day-to-day mistakes will have little impact on your success as a parent and you will most likely "graduate". There are no guarantees, but never leave to chance, the things you have control over. And if you have guiding principles, the chances are much better that your children will be successful, contributing adults.
Not every day of parenting is successful, not every decision is a good one. Yet, when your children think back, I hope they will see you as inspiring and beautiful...like Sunrises and sunsets!