Parents, are you playing the short-term game or the long-term game in parenting? In other words, do you have future goals in mind for your child as you parent him, or are you simply parenting on the fly?
When it comes to parenting, as with most other things in life, you need a plan. When you build a home, you make a plan. When you’re getting married, you plan the wedding. Because what would happen if you didn’t? The home wouldn’t be built well. The wedding guests probably wouldn’t have any food.
It is the same with parenting. We feel stuck in our parenting when we play the short game. When we react daily with no plan or purpose and, therefore, we see no change in our child or his behavior.
When you parent with purpose, you see the results in your kids. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but trust me, purposeful parenting plants a seed that grows each child into the adult you dream your child will be.
How do you parent with purpose?
First, commit to the long game.
Say you and your child are at the mall. He begins begging you to buy him things he sees in the stores. He doesn’t need these things, but if you’re parenting for the short-term, you’ll buy him what he wants just to get him to stop bugging you.
If you’re parenting with the long game in mind, you’ll react differently. You’ll pause and realize this is an opportunity to teach him to wait for what he wants. You won’t buy him the toy he wants at the mall. He will nag. You will get annoyed, but in the long run, he will learn patience, contentment and how to wait instead of expecting everything he wants to materialize in front of him. We all know this isn't how life works.