Do It Now
As I begin my day of appointments and my Big Three for the day, I have to remind myself that I need to Do It now. Getting started is an area that needs attention. When I give it that attention with an attitude, I have found that I need to do it now; I get started right away and complete the task. I believe today that I am writing for both kids and us adults when I say, Do It Now = Just Did It. Teaching our kids and ourselves the value of commitment and completing what we say we’re going to do is a lifelong skill that pays excellent benefits.
I hate getting up early in the morning. I know some people enjoy getting up early, but it is difficult for me. But, I also don’t particularly appreciate committing myself and then not completing it. If I say that I will get up at 5:30 a.m. and finish my morning routine before everyone gets out of bed, and I don’t do it, then I’ve let myself down more than anything. If I get up only 2-3 days a week, I either need to change the commitment or complete it. If it is good for me, such as stretching in the morning, then I need to do it right away because once the day has started, I am less like to complete it.
The same with kids as well. As a band director for many years, I had a chance to work with elementary kids through high school kids. I would notice that a student may want to play an instrument in the later elementary years. So the parents come to the band night held at the school along with the local music vendor, and they go about selecting an instrument. The child is excited and eager to learn how to play an instrument. However, there are no shortcuts to learning a musical instrument, and soon, the drudgery sets in, and the child realizes that, hey, his is complex, and it will take time.
Right now, as parents, we have the chance to teach kids the lifelong skill of commitment, of sticking with something. So often, I would hear parents say, “Well, if you don’t like it, then you can quit.” There are so many things that I didn’t like, like practicing the piano all those years. But now, I am incredibly grateful for my parents encouraging me to stick with it and do it now. Each day I would ” do it now,” and before I knew it, my friends came up to me and said I started the piano, but I quit. I wish I could play like you.
Arthur Rubenstein, a famous classical piano performer, tells a story about a woman who came to him after a concert and said, “Oh, how I wish I would play as you do.” He replied, “No, you don’t, or you would.” Which is a way of saying, Do it Now – every day for years, and you can play very well too. That long-term commitment is best served with a Do It Now attitude, and it teaches kids such a valuable life skill that will set them apart from others around them in adulthood.
Here is another post from my Tips for Teens series that will be very helpful, Tips for Teens: Three Things to Do Now – Dr. Rich Patterson (pattersonphd.com)
A favorite source of mine is Psychology Today, and Susan Sparks has a wonderful article on Do It Now, Do It Now | Psychology Today
Yours for better parenting,