It is a common debate that whether people are born leaders or they develop these leadership skills overtime. Some children tend to be generally more confident and bold and can easily tackle all sorts of people and develop a rapport with the young and old. I for one however want my children to grow up to be good leaders as well as followers. Just as much as you need to learn to manage and command people, you need to be a good listener too.
The likeness of raising your child as an independent, self-resilient and confident individual can be compared to the likeness of being an entrepreneur versus a corporate slave. Working on your kids since the very beginning is what will determine their overall personality to be either dominating or subdued.
- Instilling A Positive “Can-Do” Attitude
Leaders are ‘go-getters’, no matter what age bracket they belong to. You need to gear your child towards positively embracing the ups and downs of life and not being let down by the usual hindrances that come their way. Set the expectation bar high, so that your child strives to over-do themselves and develops self-confidence in the process. Let them go an extra mile and push themselves to their boundaries to achieve their target.
Positive reinforcement will motivate them to display a desired behavior. Help them overcome their fears by telling them that they CAN do it. This could me as minute as helping them overcome their fear of doctors and then you see how things fall into place.
- Let them define “achievement” and “success” for themselves
Do not try to impose your will or let ‘your’ dreams be your child’s dream. Parents tend to adopt a bickering attitude towards their child and pester them into doing a certain something that is supposedly an act of ‘high achievement’ for them. Little do parents realize that instead of defining ‘successes’ for their kids, they should let them take the lead. Achievement doesn’t necessarily need to be measured in terms of grades and needs to be fuelled by individual perceptions of achievement.
- You need to raise “confident” not “over-confident” individuals
Remember never to over-praise your kids. Yes! You need to tell your kids how awesome they are but you certainly don’t intend to fill them with a fall sense of achievement. The desired level of awesomeness should be real and not an illusion or mirage that will mislead them to think too highly of them. A healthy self-esteem can be built by a digestible amount of praise, you just don’t need to go overboard and paint your kids as megastars for every little act.
- Set a precedent of being a good leader
Children are prone to learning by imitation. From infants to toddlers to embracing teenager years, children tend to adopt norms being practiced around them. As parents it is your topmost priority to be an example worth following. Emotional intelligence is the art of mastering your emotions and reactions in response to various stimuli in the environment. The way you tackle certain life situations paves the road for your child to follow as they learn by instinct.
One of the most well-known and powerful drivers of success in leading positions is a high EQ. More than a million people when tested by TalentSmart, found that 58% of a leader’s job performance comprised of EQ and 90% of the top performing leaders attributed their success to high EQ’s.
- Empower them to make their own decisions
You need to leave your child to maneuver their own way and not be over-possessive about them. Easier said than done, I believe but as tempting as it may be to jump into a situation to help your child it is not always beneficial for the child in the long run. These decision making skills and independent nature usually reflects in a panic situation when you need to have a family preparedness plan and how well your child handles the situation is the true test of his leadership abilities. You could ALWAYS re-evaluate his attempt and performance and let him/her learn a lesson from their past mistakes.
Risk-takers are usually the ones that find themselves at respectable, distinguished positions in life. Overprotecting your child makes him dependent on you and when they don’t taste failure then do not know the joy of emerging stronger from a failure. You’ve got to risk it all to enjoy the fruits later on in life. Having the inner resilience to face disappointment is the first step to being able to lead successfully in the future.
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