Parents want their children to grow up to be responsible adults. Teaching them to be responsible is something else entirely. The following are smart ways of teaching your kids personal responsibilities.
Perhaps you’re not sure what is meant by personal responsibility. It is the willingness to accept the standards which society dictates for individual behavior and trying to live by those standards. It can also mean that a person will accept the consequences of their behavior without blaming others.
* Children will understand the importance of education by watching you. If you enjoy reading and do so often, your children will be more likely to want to learn to read early. Children who see their parents learn to do new things rather than sit and watch television all of the time are not going to be satisfied sitting on the sidelines. They’ll want to learn and do in the same way their parents do.
* Parents who read to their children and help them with their schoolwork have children who are more apt to put forth an effort to do well in school. If their parents don’t seem to care about how well they do in school, it is unlikely the children will either. When your child understands that it is their responsibility to apply themselves in school, they will realise that if they don’t do well they will have to bear the consequences.
* Show by example about having a good work ethic. Your children will learn the benefits of working hard if they see you go to work each day as well as do your share of the work around the house. When they see you being rewarded for being a good employee, they learn they can expect to be rewarded for being diligent in their jobs – no matter what that job might be.
* Talk to your older children about the consequences of casual sex. If they understand how their lives can change drastically by engaging in sex, it may keep them from experimenting. Don’t give your children mixed messages. Explain that you expect them to say “No” when pressured to have sex. If they do decide to go against your wishes, they will demonstrate personal responsibility by taking precautions which will keep them as safe as possible and not bring another child into the world.
* Beyond casual sex, you’ll also want to talk to your teen about not drinking or taking drugs. Teach them to say “No” to anything which can harm them or cause them to harm others. I remember my nephew questioning which drugs were “good medicine” and which ones were “bad medicine”. We helped him understand the difference between prescribed drugs from a doctor and illegal drugs or “bad medicine”!
* It is also important to talk to your children about financial responsibility. If they apply themselves in school and graduate, they may want to further their education. The better education they get, the better pay they can expect. Teach them at an early age how to use money wisely and how to stay out of debt. Teaching financial responsibility could include giving your child an allowance and letting them make mistakes with money in small amounts so they’ll avoid those mistakes with larger amounts.
As a parent you want the best for your children. You want them to grow up to be responsible members of society who can contribute. Teaching them personal responsibility isn’t necessarily an easy task, but it is one that is vitally important.