This Time of Year!

11 Sep
Dear Readers,
Another rainy Cleveland day (not complaining, well needed) with my staff at my feet as I think about the words a friend said to me this morning. She said as the Jewish holidays (the New Year) approach this is a time to reflect, look forward and to work towards personal fulfillment.
I really like that thought. Anytime for that matter would be a great time for such said positive thoughts but the timing of the Jewish New Year seems particularly perfect to me. The fall arrives with many changes and transitions; changing weather, changing colors, changing routines, changing clothes… confirming the perfect time for a change of perspective.
Which brings me to my post…
I read a wonderful article about raising successful children in the Wall Street Journal by Paul Tough titled “Opting Out of the Rug Rat Race”. This is it in a nut shell…STOP over scheduling, over indulgent, over protective, over controlling your child’s life! They actually did a study based on the General Education Development program (GED), a “…way for high-school dropouts to earn the equivalent of high-school diplomas.”
Mr. Tough writes,
“What matters most in a child’s development, they say, is not how much information we can stuff into her brain in the first few years of life. What matters, instead, is whether we are able to help her develop a very different set of qualities, a list that includes persistence, self-control, curiosity, conscientiousness, grit and self-confidence. Economists refer to these as noncognitive skills, psychologists call them personality traits, and the rest of us often think of them as character.”…”When you talk today to teachers and administrators at high-achieving high schools, this is their greatest concern: that their students are so overly protected from adversity, in their homes and at school, that they never develop the crucial ability to overcome real setbacks and in the process to develop strength of character.”
Really? No Kidding? If you spoil the hell out of your child, making them think they can do no wrong. Protecting them from negative consequences/adversities, raising your child as your equal and continually bragging about precious, really that will not workout in your child’s best interest down the road? WOW what a shocker! Wasn’t expecting that one! Is anyone picking up my sarcasm because I’m spreading it on really thick?
For those of you with a parental IQ above 50 I know this comes as nothing new and confirms your thoughts and actions. And to you I say keep going, stay on track, your child’s happiness (resilience) will be your reward, happiness and comfort. I personally know it is not easy to deliver difficult consequences to someone you would gladly give up your life for and/or seeing your child struggling to learn life’s painful lessons can make the strongest parent crumble but hang in there, it is worth it! What you are teaching them is how to live and survive in this world without you, which should be every parent’s goal.
And for the rest of you in the parenting pool with a lower IQ I do not care for you are not reading my blog anyway. You are the kind of parent that thinks your child is an extension of yourself and hence does not have any time left  in your very important day between making excuses for your child/yourself, doing their homework, and in full belief you gave birth to our Holy Savior! Amen! 
Asklotta and staff will MIND YOUR BUSINESS today in full reflections in honor of the New Year! I might have to work on the personal fulfillment portion a little bit longer!
Again, it has been my pleasure to tell you what to do and what NOT to do!
Kindest regards,
President and CEO

2 Responses to “This Time of Year!”

  1. Jennifer B September 11, 2012 at 1:40 pm #

    Your observations are so on point. I live in a community of over-indulged children (and parents for that matter). Parents do their kids’ homework, push them to compete in a multitude of activities all to enhance their children’s “resumes” and, clean up their messes when they get in trouble – either at school or with the law. They justify their behaviour with comments like “the world today is so competitive that I must do everything in my power to give my kid a leg-up”. Most of these kids go to private schools, don’t know what it is like to hold down a job (part-time), drive brand new luxury cars and have a wad of cash and credit cards to spend as they choose. My husband and I raised our son in this community. He DID graduate from a very prestigious private school, he DID have a part-time job waiting tables, he DID his own homework, he FAILED at many things along the way without a clean-up detail following behind him, he was responsible for his own actions and decisions and lived with the consquequences of those, he DID compete at a high level as a wrestler with a coach that busted his ‘butt’ everyday to be a man of integrity and honor. I have been the subject of much criticism over the years from my friends (and family!) for being too hard on my son. I heard things like “lighten up on him, he’s just a kid” among others (some more harsh). I’m pleased to report that he accepted an appointment to the United States Military Academy (West Point) and is planning a career in the military. My point here is this… old-fashioned discipline and high expectations for our kids’ behaviour can go a long way to improving our society – one kid at a time.

    • asklotta September 11, 2012 at 2:31 pm #

      Jennifer, thank you so much for taking the time to share your wonderful parenting results. I think we lived almost the exact life. I worked hard to ensure my children were not raised to feel entitled, they were owed in life. That they were responsible for their happiness/success in life. Their actions have consequences and must take full responsibility. I too have seen the most wonderful results. My children are not perfect nor am I. We all have made mistakes but we own up to them and really try to do better. Thank you so much for your wonderful contribution “one child at a time!”

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