Paradox of the ‘American Dream’

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 and parenting

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?

Life is not fair!

“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.