Recently, a popular talk show host featured a guest spot that focused on a single parent household. While that may not seem to be an extraordinary way to spend six minutes of your day, the story was truly inspirational as the single mother involved had just had the thrilling experience of witnessing her two sons being accepted into the Ivy League colleges of their dreams. One was 18 and celebrated getting accepted into Stanford. The second son, at age 16, was accepted into Harvard University. So, how did this mother single-handedly raise two successful boys without benefit of a father and with little income and material comfort?
So many parents may believe that the only way to raise truly successful and accomplished adults is to provide them with all of the advantages in life. On the other hand, the vast majority of the world seems to believe that a poor, single mother will not be capable of raising productive members of society, especially when she is away from home the majority of the time trying to earn enough to keep the lights on and food on the table. So, what truly helps motivate a child to grow into a responsible and caring adult?
The most important factor in whether a child succeeds in life is having a significant person in their life that encourages, supports and holds them accountable for their behaviors and decisions. Setting the example of how to be a responsible adult while also modeling how to be compassionate to others will make a lasting impression.
While it is helpful to have all of the important material possessions in life to help one achieve their goals and dreams, things cannot influence the outcome of whether a child will live up to his or her potential. Indeed, it is confidence and pride in oneself that is the biggest factor in life. If a child has just one person – be it mother, father, sibling or teacher – who is willing to invest emotionally in him or her, it can make all of the difference in life.
Conversely, if that one person who represents the voice of authority or acceptance in that youngster’s life is disapproving, detached or expresses doubt or negativity, then the child is more likely to turn inward and fail to reach for goals that may seem to no longer be attainable. The power of belief and encouragement can make the difference between a child who may earn decent grades just to stay out of trouble and the child who thrives in every aspect because he or she knows that someone else believes in them.
Almost every parent wants their child to succeed and be happy in life. In order to do that, we must form them in good habits and behaviors by setting good examples. But, the most important task of all is to show them and tell them that they are loved and valued. The rest will take care of itself.
Writer Bio: Angela Mose
I am a mom of 7 who has successfully homeschooled for 20 years. I was married for more than 25 years and have recently started my life over. I have a passion for writing and music and when the two can be combined, it is utopia. A Maryland native, I am planning to relocate north in the near future and will continue to strive to learn and experience new things on a regular basis. I am fortunate enough to be able to work from home while exploring new ways to increase my knowledge and skills and help improve the lives of those around me.