In the age of new technology when every task seems to work at the touch of a button or wave of a hand (Kinect or Samsung Galaxy S4 phone), we actually do follow other people’s way of doing things. Just think of a moment, we buy machines all the time. In order to use them, we have to follow the ‘how to operate’ manual. There are heaps of tutorials online on how to run software and electronic gadgets. Then comes Windows 8! After so many years, I thought my learning journey with the computer world is complete.
A whole new world for a whole new generation. In getting my daughter to clean up her room, I spend the entire time hassling her to move on with her chores. No matter how I try to refrain from becoming anxious, I still and always adopt the same old style of parenting, nag. “How many times have I taught you to keep your room tidy and neat. You are now a teenager ………….brrr.” I can feel myself turning up the heat in my body. And she just would not budge.
But when my daughter is able to follow the video tutorial on ‘How to change your username type from local to administrator on Windows 8’, I am silenced. In awe of her smartness, I asked “How do you do that?” To which she replied, “Like this. I just go to YouTube and search for a tutorial. Its right here mum, I just look it up online.”
Promise yourself one thing parents! If ever you have to ask your child on how to do what they do, make sure you are ready to be displaced as their life coach and mentor.
Now you see how your children get their confidence from? Not from you teaching them new skills or paying attention to your stories of good and evil, but from learning and discovering how to do things on their own. Unfortunately, the stuff they tend to discover are the ones you most likely wish they hadn’t. Guess what! We immediately come up with another excuse why we don’t want to learn new things. I am too old for this. Or they don’t make machines like they used to anymore. That my friends, is just us talking out loud so we appear smart enough for our kids. Maybe we are right that machines aren’t so reliable compared to the good old days. (I have to careful in using the term old. No pun intented.) Guess what again! The children are not old compared to us.
Mothers, listen up, we don’t always know best.
We ALWAYS know WHAT is best. That is a huge difference.
Here is the problem. We seldom question ourselves why we want to try to pick up new skills and knowledge to keep up with the times so we can give sound advice to our kids. It is important for our children to see that we are interested in what they do without creating a feeling that we are trailing their every move. Go do your research and ask your friends while they are in school. Learn the stuff kids do for their age for fun and games. When you are educated about their world, you will feel less inclined to nag and complain. That is the truth! Because you are well informed.
I have said a lot. Hopefully you get the point. If you want your child to listen to you, don’t just sit around waiting for the world to demonstrate to you how children live. Start learning about them and their world. Suppose you really can’t work out how to change your username type on the computer, at least you know that Windows 8 is all about! In which case, knowledge wins over skill. Allow your child to show you how its done as opposed to how you should do it. Your basic knowledge of how things work, allows you to go with the flow. You are then ready to ask relevant questions. This also creates an opportunity for a more bonding relationship between you and your children. Practice the art of following your child.