Wondering how to raise a successful child or children? I read 23 biographies in a row of successful adults, and noticed ONE parenting technique that 98% of their parents used. Coincidence? I think not…
A funny thing happens when you read 23 books within one genre – in 2 months, no less – while researching for a kid’s career exploration article: you start to see a pattern.
And this particular pattern?
I didn’t just see it; it slapped me over my face in nearly every one of those 23 books.
So, I got to thinking: could this ONE parenting technique be the secret to raising a “successful” adult?
While I don’t necessarily believe that one particular parenting technique guarantees your kiddo’s future success, the fact that this one showed up in nearly 23 different biographies of successful people – people who became big deals in their profession of choice – made me want to share it with you.
I mean, how can 23 different successful people be wrong about what helped them achieve all they did?
That No. 1 Reason is….
Each of their parents — who were unknowingly raising successful children — allowed them to experiment with what they were naturally interested in as a child.
Seriously, it’s that simple + straight forward.
But stay with me here a second.
Because when I say ‘experiment’? I mean EXPERIMENT.
:: Super-Soaker Inventor: Lonnie’s parents let him continue his experiments even after one caught fire in their kitchen…with the only stipulation being that they had to be done outside of the house moving forward.
:: Explorer + Scientist: Charles Darwin’s father thought the idea of him going aboard the HMS Beagle to explore places was a “wild scheme,” but still let him go.
:: Astronaut: Leland Melvin wanted a skateboard that his father could not afford. Instead of saying no, his father told him he’d have to build one.
:: Oceanographer + Shark Enthusiast: Eugenie Clark’s mother surprised her with a saltwater aquarium.
:: Book Writer: Ted Geisel’s (aka, Dr. Seuss) mother was fine with him drawing all over his walls. And his father shared tales from his zoo + the comic strips out of his newspapers with him. Did I mention his parents let him enter a drawing contest run by the Springfield Union…one that he won?
:: Computer Programmer: Grace Hopper’s mother just giggled after her child had taken apart seven different clocks throughout their home to figure out what made them tick. Which led her to fix her alarm clock, build her dolls an elevator in their dollhouse suite, and even enlist in the Navy at age 36 to write programs for computers.
What this Suggests We Mama Bears Should Be Doing
In figuring out how to raise a successful child, your role in encouraging and supporting your child’s sometimes-crazy ideas + experimentation cannot be understated.
Yes, it can get annoying. Especially with the messes (I’m an organized nut, myself).
Yes, it can get tempting to mold your kid’s activities, which is good some of the time, but never all of the time.
Yes, it can seem to be a waste of resources – both money and time.
But let them play, unstructured, experimenting to their heart’s content around what they naturally gravitate towards. And see where they end up. It's worth a shot because don't we all want to know how to raise a successful and happy child?
What are YOUR kids naturally interested in, and how have you found ways to indulge this (or ways you'll allow them to in the future)?