Updated: Mar 7, 2021
A Child’s Mind is a Tabula Rasa.
This is probably the only statement I remember from my first psychology class that I attended 15 years ago. What it means is that a child’s mind is a blank slate. And it is the responsibility of the parents, teachers and the child’s environment to expose the child to the right lessons.
Children are highly adaptive, resilient, and yet easily malleable. Till a certain age, say around 8 years, a child learns quickly and is ready to experiment, try new things, and continues to grow rapidly. It is after that age when the child starts to develop his or her own logic and thus is in a position to push back. Say no.
In my decade long experience of dealing with kids, of conversations on happiness (I pursued a Project Happiness for 365 days) and hundreds of books, I have distilled my understanding of the following three life lessons -
1. Love Your Self
Self-love is not something that comes naturally to us. We care about our family and loved ones and your friends but not for ourselves. It needs to be a voluntary, conscious activity that we need to make into daily regular practice from very early on. This practice will lead to a child in the growing years to adolescence and adulthood to love themselves and become stronger and resilient as they face the adversity of life.
2. Failure is inevitable
Success in life is built upon multiple events where I failed. It is a critical lesson that needs to be inculcated in children. It is very important for a child to understand that failure is inevitable but that you never ever give up. Failure will come but you need to keep faith In your abilities and keep moving forward.
3. Never lose faith
The path of life has many hurdles and at each hurdle, we face various hardships. Through every hurdle, we need to learn to not give up as day follows night and a rough patch is followed by a patch of growth and success we need to teach our children that one needs to go through these cycles with humility and never lose faith because tomorrow will definitely be better than today if they continue to have faith, work hard and stay happy.
Next time, I will share some stories that will help nudge these ideas on the child's blank slate. Till then, Happy Parenting! And feel free to reach out with any parenting questions.
Utkarsh Narang is the Founder of IgnitedNeurons. He is a Certified Happiness Coach and an Internationally (ICF) Certified Life & Business Coach. He leads workshops with corporates and executives on Well Being, Growth Mindset and more. His mission is to inspire & ignite the unique spark within every individual.
The article was originally published on Momspresso Blog.