The essence of the American dream is that if you work hard enough, move fast enough and dream big enough you will achieve your goals. “Pursue your dreams and follow your heart,” is the message we have been seduced with, cajoled to reach for, and coaxed to live by from birth – into adulthood – and to death. Inherent to this statement is the assumption that pursuing our dreams and following our hearts produces happiness, peace of mind, success and more. Herein lies the paradoxical problem of living by this principle.
Entitlement is the belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges regardless of one’s contributions. Adults who expect promotions without hard word, teens who expect an allowance with no chores and elementary children who expect to win every game without practicing, demonstrate an entitlement attitude. What can you, as a parent, do to help your child not become like this?
Developmental psychologist James Fowler from his book and research, was the first to assign development stages to faith. Fowler’s stages are best understood in predictable stages of human development. They illustrate how faith develops in children giving parents a guide for teaching faith lessons.
Concerned about protecting your child’s innocence? How can parents protect their children from violent images, sexual content and inappropriate content before they are ready for it? More than ever before, parents must be proactive and be aware of what their children view and listen to. When it comes to selecting age-appropriate movies, I recommend Kids-in-mind.com.
Lawrence Kohlberg’s research and theories influenced child psychology and developmental theory for years. It is a powerful tool that can help you understand the motivation behind your child’s decisions at each stage of development.
The book and video series, Effective Parenting In A Defective World, by Chip Ingram (Focus on the Family, 2006), is a powerful, practical guide for parents with children of all ages. We also highly recommend the DVD study and guide for small groups or Sunday School classes.
Have you considered the impact of advertising, commercials and toys on your child’s values? There are ways to protect children from unhealthy toys, pressure from commercials and ways parents can get involved. Find out how commercials impact children and what you can do to protect your child’s innocence.
“It’s not fair!” is a phrase heard by every parent. Learning to survive is a skill acquired. As life sends you challenges you either survive or die. As parents, we must constantly be on the look out to ensure our children don’t become the ones who believe they are entitled to rights, privileges and “stuff” without responsibility, hard work and stewardship. You can’t have the former without the latter.
We want our children to fit in, to be accepted at school. When they ask for expensive items, it hooks something from our past. And like many parents, we find ourselves buying something not needed or out of our budget. Read about tactics to help your child learn the value of money and more while saying “No.”