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Let Your Kids Surprise You And Themselves

by Jake Beus

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November 11th, 2011

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Growing Up Too fast

Yesterday I was at the gym working out with a friend. I was helping her do the bench press in order to build some upper body strength. She hadn’t done the bench press in a long time. As I pushed her and spotted her weights, she would be about to give up and I’d encourage her and help her do a few more reps. Mentally she would think she was done at 10 reps, but I’d encourage her and she would often do at least 5 more reps. I told her that she needs to give herself opportunities to surprise herself.

I don’t have any kids, so I’m not going to give you any parenting advice. All that I can do is think of ways that I can be a good father when that opportunity arrives and also try to see things from a son’s perspective. I grew up in a large family. My parents were not perfect parents but they were great parents and did their best, and I love them for that. I knew they could see some sort of potential in me and they still do. There have been times when I have been very motivated to achieve my potential, and other times when there has not been much motivation at all.

Yesterday I learned a great lesson: “Give yourself and others the opportunity to be surprised.” This has made me reflect on the past and think about the future. I took piano lessons for 6 years in my youth. I wasn’t a great piano student, but my mom made it a rule that we couldn’t play organized sports unless we took piano lessons. Sometimes I would enjoy the music I played and work hard to learn it. Other times I didn’t. Had I simply worked a little bit harder, I think I would have surprised myself and my parents. Instead, I just thought about playing sports and I did just enough to pass mom’s inspection.

Many parents have had great success teaching their kids Spanish with the help of Visual Link Spanish software without knowing Spanish themselves. What a great surprise it must be to see your child speaking in a foreign language that you don’t know. On parenting forums I have read the thoughts of parents wondering if they should teach their child Spanish and what tools to use. They wonder what age is too young. One regret that I have from my youth is that many times I did just enough to get by so that I could play sports. I wish I had worked harder on the piano or taken on some other hobbies that didn’t involve basketball, football, baseball, and soccer. Don’t get me wrong, I love sports and I’m glad I play them, but it is good to be more well-rounded.

Your kids need an opportunity to develop skills and talents. Give them an opportunity to learn Spanish. Give them an opportunity to work, play, and learn new things. Encourage hard work and creativity. Celebrate success. Let your kids surprise you and themselves. When is the last time you were surprised?

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