“I’m not smart.”
This has got to be one of the last things any conscious parent would want to hear. I should know because these were the exact words uttered by my 10 year old daughter during an online Science demo she was watching with her brother, who’s a year younger, the other day. I think she was disheartened that he was getting it right to all the questions asked while she’d gotten everything wrong.
Sitting next to them, I could see this tidal wave of negative self-talk rising in her mind and immediately sprung to action to contain it. I know something like this could easily lead to a confidence issue, which would in turn be harder to resolve. At the age she’s at, anything but a healthy self-esteem is definitely insidious – something along the lines of peer comparison and the illogical conclusion that she’s not matching up in any way.
“Learn to fail so that you will not fail to learn.”
I showed her this quote to cheer her up, but also to tell myself to STOP feeling all that MOM GUILT about not preparing her enough in the academics department to date. To stay objective, I processed my emotions, and like a scientist, dissected my existing approach so that I could come up with a GAMEPLAN – an action plan of “daily practice” that is still palatable, but would work to help her with better scores and therefore boosted confidence levels.
Parenting is no different from the process of mentoring and starts with some hand-holding at first. But given the right amount of emotional SUPPORT and DIRECTION, we emerge with shifted perspectives, growth and the ability to RECOVER quickly from all sorts of parenting situations that would surely come our way.
P.S. Fresh Off The Press! I’m opening up 3 free slots for parents who are finding themselves in a similar situation and could use a fresh take on parenting. PM if you’re feeling ‘yes’ or share this opportunity with fellow parents by reposting it. 😊