Find Those Sparks
Today I want to encourage you to find those sparks in young people. Sparks represent the goodness that is inside them. It is their gifts, particular way of thinking, or caring attitude; maybe it is just how they think. When you notice them in your kid’s or others’ kids, make a positive remark. You can say something like, “That is a real gift that you have; I hope that you will use it often with others.” Just by saying something simple like that, you connect with them in such a way that says, “You are great, you have good ideas, you have something to offer the world.”
In my experience as an educator, many kids feel they have nothing to offer anyone or anything. I remember feeling that way at times as well when I was younger. When kids look at our successes, our place in life, it is easy for them to get discouraged and think, “I’ll never live like that.”
I remember having a conversation with my oldest step-son one day in our kitchen. He was struggling with school truancy, and I was trying to encourage him to do his best, to present his best self every day. His best self was so magnificent, but he didn’t see it. When I said to him, “You can easily live in a house like this.” His response was, “I’ll never live in a house like this.” I was so surprised because, in so many ways, he already had a great start towards living at a high standard, but he didn’t see it. So often, kids don’t see it; they can’t believe that it could work out.
As parents, when we support our kids by attending their events, sports, music, drama, and clubs they are members of, we give them encouragement for their sparks and interests. Maybe they do something nice to someone, recognize it and offer that you thought that was a charming gesture. That recognition and encouragements go a long way to starting future conversations and help to build young people’s self-esteem.
For more guidance, please see my post on Beyond High School, Beyond High School, What’s Next? – Dr. Rich Patterson (pattersonphd.com)
Succeed On Purpose as a post here that will be very helpful Find Your Spark (succeedonpurpose.com)
Yours for Better Parenting,