PARENTING ARTICLES :
Parents Who Lead Will Inspire Children Who Win
By Dr. Maryann Rosenthal
Nearly all of our children are highly creative until the age of five. Then, within two years, only 10 percent of these children maintain their creativity. By the time they reach the age of eight, only two percent of our kids are able to meet the creativity needs of real creativity for the remaining 98 percent. How does this happen and why? We adults seem to nip creativity in the bud by making our kids hesitant and afraid. Afraid of not doing what other people want, of not pleasing, of making mistakes, of failing, and of being clumsy, foolish, or wrong. This fear of rejection makes them afraid to risk, afraid to experiment, and afraid to try the difficult or the unknown.
Even before a child is born, the nurturing moods if its mother during the nine months of pregnancy are important, as are all of the environmental noise levels, reactions, and substances the mother consumes as a reflection of her own self-image.
Modeling is a potent learning tool that goes far beyond simple imitation. Modeling
takes place unconsciously, as one individual gradually assumes the characteristics of someone else, especially someone who he or she likes or admires. The parent is a far more potent role model than any other adult in the child’s social environment; and the modeling effect operates so powerfully, quietly, and universally, that the parent is hardly aware of it, and the child is totally unaware that it is taking place at all.
Help your children convert stumbling blocks into stepping-stones to success by being more optimistic, by swallowing your cynicism, by praising their progress more, and by criticizing their mistakes less. Creativity comes from parents who are interested in children’s school work, in attending open houses, who are eager to learn about what’s happening in their children’s lives, who’ll listen, unconditionally, who praise often and criticize constructively the behavior that is undesirable, while not directly criticizing
Introduce your children to the creative geniuses in history who, in reality, were hard-working people trying to solve problems, but who never gave up on their dreams. Successful people believe in their dreams when they have nothing but a dream to hang on to.
Creativity is having parents who are open to new ideas. They are imaginative and productive and say, “ It may be difficult, but it is always possible.”
Dr. Maryann Rosenthal’s new book “Be A Parent Not a Pushover is available in bookstores everywhere. Dr. Maryann tells how to find a balance between loving your children and setting limits for them, to generate trust, confidence, resilience, and integrity.