My Kids are the most vital part of my life. So, when I started by business, I felt that guilt monster following me everywhere and into my most busiest moments. I went back to the same question all the time, ‘Am I ignoring my child to pursue my goals and dreams?’ After much deep searching, I realized the answer wasn’t so easy. There will be times when they are ignored but then they saw a happy part of me. A part of me that they wanted to connect with. They wanted to be part of my goals and dreams. While that was very overwhelming at first, but gradually I was able to involve them in my goals and dreams.
Here are some of my take-away lessons for all those mothers who want to involve their children in their goals and dreams.
Talk to them
Your children may be seeing a lot of change around them. They may be seeing a busy, productive you. They may be seeing a physical transformation or they may be seeing you running around getting more things done. Ýour children probably don’t understand these changes. So, it’s best to talk to them. Tell them how you have finally set yourself to realize your goals and dreams. Admit you need help. Make them feel an important component to the path towards that change. Most importantly, ask them if they want to be involved. Get them excited about the involvement.
Follow the five-step plan
If you are like most parentpreneurs, you’ll agree that involving your kids in your goals and dreams is easier said than done. It’s easy to talk to them but the hardest part is finding actionable ways to involve them. The author of Goal Express, Jim Wiltens, has outlined a very doable give step plan that parents can borrow:
1. Write it down: Write your goal and dreams. Use concise, simple words. Put the writing up on your fridge. If you can, go an extra mile and make a fridge magnet or a coaster out of it!
2. Be specific: Setting up a business’ ís a vague goal. Even if you can see clients begging to hire you, your kids probably don’t have the superpowers to see that. Make your goal specific. What kind of business? What’s the time target? Will that be an online or a brick-and-mortar store? Where do we start?
3. Think of the Pros and the Cons: What are the pros and cons of involving your kids? Don’t just think of the disaster. Think of how much fun it will all be. A big family adventure. Get a paper and a pencil and write those pros and cons. If your kids are big enough, ask them to contribute. That’s the best way to involve them.
- Ask yourself the Three W’s:
- Who can help? If you have more than one kid, give them responsibility as per their ages.
- What do I need to do?
4. When? It’s not really possible to get them involved 24/7. They have school. They need to appease their fun quota. Set a time every day for involve your children in the goal. Or do it over the weekend, if their schedule is too busy.
5. Monitor Progress: Get feedback from your children. Are they happy with the involvement? Talk to your spouse or your parents. Get an unbiased view. Is the involvement making them into better individuals? And also, are you benefiting from the involvement?
Open your book for them
Show them a sneak peak of the real world. If it’s a business you’re talking about, show them the financial books. If it’s a body transformation that you are talking about, show them your exercise routine. This will help your kids see your dream and goals from a realistic point of view. Give them something to hold on to.
Involving children often means empowering them. Solve problems together. The best way to give them that confidence is by involving them in the thinking sessions. If you have a new idea or a product in mind, talk it through with them. It wouldn’t just give you new, younger perspective but also build up trust as a family. Set after-dinner brainstorming sessions. Let everyone speak. Make sure they feel heard. Consider their ideas and advice realistically.
Make it exciting
Kids get bored easily. Make your goals and dreams appear exciting. Excitement is contagious. If they see an excited parent, they’ll get excited. Bring out the colorful crayons and the new animal stationery. Plan excursions together.
Admit a fall
While it’s very fun to involve your kids in the business and make them feel part of the great family revolution, you should also own up to your mistakes. Dreams don’t just belong in the wonderland and the far far away land. So, when you take them out into the reality, there will be setbacks. Your kids should know this. Discuss with them when there is a problem. Talk to them. Communicate with them. It’s not the end of the world. Prepare to strike back with more gusto. Use words, feelings, and actions to do that. If you go sulking around when you lose a client, it sets the wrong impression on your child. For them to accept failure, you should be prepared to accept it first. Be the bigger person because you literally are the bigger person here.
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