I was reflecting tonight on my childhood role models and the effect they had in my life. As a child I idolized Neil Armstrong. He helped instill in me my sense of adventure. The most important lesson I learned from my hero is that there is nothing a person can't do once they set their mind to it. Unfortunately many young kids role models tend to be cartoons. Children need and want positive role models to look up to in their life. Real life role models. Knowing that their are people in the world that like the same thing that they do, and are accomplished, interesting, and committed, will fuel their optimism, desire, and persistence.
Below are 3 ways in which you can give your kids some great role models to look up to.
1. Gather resources that have stories of great accomplished men and women and fill your child's setting with them. There are books, website, magazines, and newspapers that are filled with inspiring stories. Spend time with your child finding positive role models. Explain to them who they are and what they did that have earned the a place in history.
2. Go to the library or to the bookstore with your children. Together you can pick out magazines and newspapers that feature stories of successful men and women that interest your kids. Perhaps even subscribe to one or more for your child to receive.
3. Read biographies of people that have made a successful life of the same things that interest your child. Talk with them about it. You can also clip articles from the newspapers or start a scrapbook that features strong accomplished people that interest your child.
One last thing, it is important to remember that as parents we are our children's first role models, and heros. With that in mind, we should think about our own behaviors and what we can do to have a positive impact in our children. I often think that looking at things this way can help us parents become better people, better human beings. Not only do we impact our kids, but they impact us in a very subtle and profound way. Something to chew on the next time you are doing something and you notice your child watching you.