Lesson: “It’s easier to build strong children then to repair broken men.” This quote from Frederick Douglas is the first lesson of my blog because of the wisdom and profound truth of the message. A message that I keep in the forefront of my mind as I parent and interact with all children and young people.
When you come to the realization that one bad experience, one bad encounter can break a child and change the trajectory of their life forever, you become much more careful with how you interact with them.
I’m sure we’ve all come across someone, an adult, who is still struggling with some type of pain or damage from childhood. That is because children are so impressionable. Things that are impressed upon us as children stay with us, whether good or bad. I have memories of very specific things that adults said to me as a child. Some of them motivated me but some of them hurt my self-esteem and caused me to question my self-worth. Thankfully, the positive adults who were building me up outweighed the few negative ones who did the opposite. Unfortunately, that isn’t the reality for some and the damage is often hard to recover from.
Action Step(s): This lesson’s application is two-fold. First, build up the children in your life; invest into their future, watch how you speak to them, how you interact with them, what you expose them to, encourage them and be their cheerleader, listen to them and let them share their thoughts and feelings with you. Second, practice having a more open-mind with the adults in your life that don’t act the way you think they should. Try to work on approaching people from a place of understanding instead of judgment, you never know what they are trying to work through or recover from.