While watching one of my favorite T.V. shows, the host had a group of people on the show to share their story of how they had reached their goal of living their dream life.
One of the guest on the show stated that every day their father would ask his children what had they failed at during that day. The guest on the show replied, nothing Dad. I was ready to hear her father reply with words of excitement and pride, instead her father informed her that he was disappointed. At this point I had to rewind the show, because I knew that my hearing had failed me. Just the contrary he indeed had told his daughter that he was disappointed with her.
The guest stated her father felt that if a person had not failed at anything in an entire day, then they had not challenged themselves or tried doing something that was not in their comfort zone. His statement was very profound for me, and very revealing.
We must teach and show our children that they should always find ways to challenge themselves to explore and expand their mind. When they do this they learn that everything does not come easily and they will be disappointed with themselves and others. But guess what, that’s also ok. These feelings of disappointment, fear, sadness and sometimes anger are all feelings that we must go through. Let’s call it medicine for our soul and well-being.
We all have a gift that lies inside of us and we must live outside our comfort zone to reach it.
I remember my mom telling my siblings and myself that when she was growing up my grandmother would have her walk to the neighborhood store; mind you the store was just up the street. My mom said that she would cry and could not understand why she was made to go, see my grandmother knew that my mom was very shy and afraid of being around people she did not know and if she allowed my mom to stay right under her all the time, she would not reach her potential, or find her gifts and passions in life.
Are we as parents sitting down with our children at the dinner table having a conversation with them or just asking them the routine questions, “how was your day”?, or “did you have a good day”?
If your children grow up hearing about your fears, and concerns then they will know that it is ok to have these feelings and thoughts.
It’s time we give our children breathing room. They can’t expect to ace every test or always be the starter on the team. We should use the small failures to encourage them and to let them know that as long as they keep working and studying and practicing and doing their best that they are doing exactly what they are supposed to be doing and that is the definition of a winner.
So now if your child tells you they failed at something, it’s ok, because we now know that means they are exploring and trying new things and one day they can say I am living my dream and using my gifts. We are all uniquely made.