There is this mistaken notion that one can motivate another through criticism and by pointing out the things that you’d like them to change. And although that may work with some, I know that harsh words make me crumble into my worst self. However, when I sense that someone deeply believes in me, I want to live up to that belief.
So too my self motivation is far more effective when I envision my best rather than knock myself down. The first step, however, is really accepting where I’m at. We have to forgive ourselves for being human and thus just a work in progress. From that place, we can envision our aims and dreams and the manifestation of our potential, and go for it.
Though we cannot change anyone, we can change what we view possible from another. Plant seeds of hope and belief.
Someone pointed out to me a few weeks ago that I may be limiting the potential of my daughter in a specific situation by expecting the worst. And although at first I thought defensively that I am just being realistic, I’ve now seen that things can shift by shifting what I believe possible.
I am currently doing a parenting class Shefer where we’re taught that our kids co-operate with our deepest beliefs in them. We watched a video of an awe-inspiring woman who was born without hands and yet functions as any other using her feet or other parts of her body, even doing dishes, cooking and driving a car. The woman in question’s mom had raised her just the same as her brothers and sisters, expecting no less, and thus this woman had a can-do attitude without a trace of feeling sorry for herself.
Though I’m yet to figure out where praise and positive reinforcement is healthy (very rarely according to Shefer), I’ve learned that praise for something that obviously a child is capable of is more undermining than positive. There is something so powerful in transmitting a simple deep knowing and belief in your child.
Let’s believe in each other, help each other to be our best, and thus change the world.