We love hearing from the adults of Blue Papaya, and those adults who support Blue Papaya. Every one of them provide helpful and thoughtful commentary into their world as young children and teenagers. There is a reoccurring theme in every conversation, “I just wanted to be like everyone else.”
The children of the new generation know they aren’t like everyone else, but that doesn’t stop them from wanting to be accepted and liked by their peers. Our role as adults is to create a better way of loving and caring so that we help our children stand strong in their significant and delightful unique qualities. Here are some ways we can help to shed the mantle of self doubt that previous generations have endured and contribute our part to the end of the cycle of conformity over individuality.
Have respect for your children, for they are souls who have been entrusted into your care until they are able to step into this world on their own. Speak to them as you would wish to be spoken to, and expect that they also speak to you in the same manner. Treat them with the same care and consideration that you would give anyone. Be fair and balanced in your decisions, don’t be judgmental or vindictive. You’ll find that when others see how you speak and treat your children, they do will make sure to treat them at the same level of respect. Even better, your children will learn that they are valued, and expect others to treat them well.
Give your children fair responsibilities for their age, making sure to take the time to teach through instruction so they understand what is expected of them. Don’t do everything for them, for if they are to go out into the world they do need to know how to care for themselves. Children as young as elementary school can keep their rooms clean, make their own lunches, help care for family pets. As they age, teach them how to care for and clean their clothes, cook, and more. These should be fun learning experiences, that empower the child and provide positive steps towards their feeling more capable.
Most of all, love your children unconditionally. Accept them for every aspect that makes them the blessing they truly are. Hopefully, with help from you, they’ll accept themselves fully and love themselves. They still may have times in their life where they may want to fit in, but hopefully the strong foundation you have helped to instill in them will carry them through that life challenge and make that foundation even more solid.