I don’t know anyone who was given an instruction manual on how to raise children to live a happy and fulfilling life. I find this interesting because when I buy way less complicated stuff, it almost always comes with an instruction manual.
Does this mean that we consider our microwave, the car, or the bookshelf we have just purchased, to be ‘more complicated’ than having and raising our kids? Or is it because we have to pay lots of money for the new car, and we want to make sure we get the best possible value for our money?
Having kids is easy, and most of us can do it, and sometimes we don’t even think about it as we, or the person we have sex with, can become pregnant quite by accident! Great…… isn’t it?
All joking aside, I believe that making a conscious decision to bring another life into this world IS THE MOST IMPORTANT DECISION WE CAN MAKE, AND WE SHOULD ONLY DO IT DONE WHEN WE HAVE ‘GOT OUR OWN LIVES IN ORDER.’ Then, we can teach them by example, how to live a happy life.
What do I mean by getting our own lives in order?
Ok, so you want to have children. Great! Why?
Why do you want to bring another life into this world? It’s a question worthy of a lot of consideration and a question with many different answers. However, a more important question to answer first is How is my own life working out for me?
Are we happy, satisfied, fulfilled, mentally emotionally and physically balanced, and financially stable? Or do we break into frequent fits of rage, jealousy, frustration, depression, self-loathing, etc?
Do we have purpose and direction in our lives, and something that we are passionate about achieving? What I’m trying to ask is “are we living consciously, with awareness of how we ‘fit in’ to our families, societies, and the environment, and do we have a goal of contributing to the world in a positive way?
I’m not suggesting we all need to be Einstein’s, Shakespeare’s, or a Mother Theresa, but I am alluding to the fact that we contribute to either raising or lowering the vibration of the planet just because of our presence. (We are either predominantly optimistic or pessimistic.)
This is important, because, THE WAY WE THINK, FEEL AND ACT, i.e. the way we live our lives, is what our children learn from us, and then model their own lives on.
So, If we don’t know ‘who we are,’ or have no idea what we want to achieve with our lives, it’s likely that our children will end up ‘inheriting’ very similar beliefs and will be just as lost, vulnerable, and confused, about this thing called life as we are! Is that what we want for our kids?
Were you raised in a family that had their ‘act together?’
To raise a child to be happy, content, well-adjusted, and passionate about life requires that the parents first have their lives ‘up to scratch,’ so that they can pass on real wisdom learned through personal experience.
When you were young and learning ‘the rules of life’ and how to ‘fit in and be a productive and useful member of society,’ were the people responsible for teaching/programming you the best possible role models that existed?
Were their lives so perfect that they could teach you how to achieve anything and everything you wanted throughout your life?
If not, what you learned while growing up was probably NOT THE BEST of all the information available…. even if it was the best that they could do. (And this is ok, it’s just the way things are!)
ALL the information we absorbed from our environment gave rise to our beliefs about ‘how life is,’ and then our super-powerful minds set out to make these beliefs a reality! And this reality is this very life that we are currently living.
ALL THE INFORMATION STORED IN OUR MINDS HAS CONTRIBUTED TO CREATING OUR LIFE AS IT IS NOW, AND IT IS THIS SAME INFORMATION THAT WE ARE PASSING ONTO OUR CHILDREN.
This means that: If we want our children to live better lives than us, we need to change the information that we are programming them with. (You can read more about how to do this here.)
Our current life circumstances are a direct result of our programming.
Unfortunately, most of us are living life by default. By this, I mean that we have not taken the necessary time or done the necessary work on ourselves to come to ‘know ourselves.’ Our ‘life story’ is as it currently is because of the beliefs we have about life and the thoughts that continuously pervade our minds that support this current story.
These beliefs have been forming throughout our whole lives from all the unfiltered information we have ever been exposed to. These beliefs are then responsible for most of the unconscious chatter that saturates our minds (for up to ninety-five percent of our waking lives- for the rest of our lives) when we are not consciously thinking, (which is only up to five percent of the time we are awake.)
Have you ever taken any time to consider this? That who you think you currently are is nothing more than a collection of information that you have collected throughout your life. If you had been exposed to different information (programmed differently), would you be the same person you are now? No, you would not! You would see and interact with the world in a different way that corresponds completely to the ‘other’ programming.
This information each of us received may have been right or wrong, good or bad, based on truth, or even just made up by those who were influencing us when we were young and impressionable. Personally, I do not know anyone who was raised by someone who knew how to be a ‘perfect parent.’
Our parents generally did the best they could when raising us. However, unfortunately, some of us had parents with issues so big, that raising happy, healthy, and confident children was not a priority in their lives. Their minds may have been scattered all over the place, distracted by this and that, and all the time they were not really noticing that their children were acquiring their core-beliefs from ALL this confusion and distractions that were happening all around them, as well as to them.
Regardless of how good or bad our parents were, our young minds absorbed All the INFORMATION WE WERE EXPOSED TO AND STORED IT DIRECTLY INTO OUR SUBCONSCIOUS MINDS. This is really great if we were programmed by people who are successful, happy, healthy, and filled with satisfaction because of their own awesome life experience. These parents/teachers would be able to share with us the values, beliefs, ideas, they have about life that would also help to ensure that we could live a satisfying life.
If, however, our teachers and early life influencers were not able to ‘sort their own life out,’ there is no way that they could teach us how to have a great life……. Simply because they didn’t know how to do it for themselves- and no one can effectively teach us what they don’t know and understand for themselves! As children, we learned what our early life influencers knew (plus what we have worked out for ourselves) and we, in turn, pass it on, and the cycle repeats!
How do our children learn?
From conception, our children are learning from us and beginning to create their future reality based on the way we feel about and respond to life. Even though our children do not yet understand language, they do understand vibration. Vibration is the universal language of all creation.
We live in a vibrational universe and the vibrations that our children absorb from us, because of how we feel, (NOT WHAT WE ARE SAYING WITH OUR WORDS,) is what they take on board and make their own- (how we feel is a direct consequence of what we are thinking.) These feelings then become their default subconscious programs that strongly influence all their responses to life. AND OUR CHILDREN WILL THEN ATTRACT TO THEM, THROUGH THE LAW OF ATTRACTION, EXPERIENCES THAT MATCH THESE PREDOMINANT VIBRATIONS.
Children learn primarily from those closest to them and those who are around them most often. Unfortunately, this also includes the crap that is playing on the TV, mom and dad yelling at each other, what we are afraid of, and the angry kid next door. Whatever their young and impressionable minds are exposed to is what gets implanted into their subconscious.
They learn how we think, what we feel, and how we act and react, and these ideas, beliefs, and behaviors will affect the outcomes they are able to achieve for the rest of their lives- (unless they are able to change these programmed subconscious beliefs.)
What are our kids learning from us?
Most of us would like to think that we are providing our children with a better start in life than we had.
We may even work two or more jobs to ensure that they have everything they need and most of the things they want in the hopes of making them happy. However, while a third of our day, or over half of our waking hours, are taken up working to earn a living, paying taxes, buying stuff, taking the rubbish out, worrying about the diminishing rain-forests, and feeding the cat, we don’t have a lot of time or energy left to consciously reflect on how to raise wonderful, magnificent, vibrant, successful, and happy children!
So we do what previous generations have always done, what we learned from our parents. We just ‘get on with it’ and do the best we can.
It worked for us in the past, right? We turned out ok, Yeah?
Our kids will also be fine 🙂
Things are as they are, and life goes on…. for better or worse.
So, this is what we learned. But, is it REALLY what we want to be teaching our children?
It seems that many of us may be approaching life from a flawed premise: If we work really hard, struggle long enough, and pay a big enough price, we will somehow be rewarded with financial well-being and a ‘great life’ once we retire.
However, in our struggle, we deny ourselves essential wellbeing, alignment with the abundance we seek, and needed time with our kids that can never be regained.
Instead of judging the value of our lives by its quantity, a better idea is to place more emphasis on the amount of joy we feel, how relaxed and peaceful we are, and how many things we have that stimulate our desire to become more deeply involved in our life experience. And how do we learn this?
We are lucky that we have the best teachers available to us, and fortunate that they are willing to give of themselves selflessly and for free!
What can we learn from our kids?
I know we have to go to work, pay the bills, worry about grandma, and take some ‘quality time for ourselves. There are only so many hours in a day, and for most of us, it’s not enough to do all that we want to do or to do it well.
Complaining about it will change nothing, however, changing our attitude to become more positive will improve our lives and it will also improve the lives of all those around us, including our kids.
Children will naturally seek out the things that make them feel good, which inspires them to be happy, and that stimulates their curiosity to learn more about this beautiful world we live in and the game of life
that we are playing.
What happened to us that we lost this exuberance for life?
We were told we had to grow up and become responsible! HOWEVER, WE WERE NOT TOLD TO GROW UP AND STOP HAVING FUN, AND TO STOP SEEKING OUT THAT WHICH MAKE US FEEL GOOD!
The best way to retain our feelings of wonder and joy about life is to follow the examples set by our children. They never just walk anywhere…. They dance along, make up games all the time, look deeply into things that they haven’t seen before, and ask lots of questions. This is all part of their natural curiosity about life…… before we reprogram them with our beliefs that will, with time, turn them into ‘mini me’s.’ They will then become semi-robotic or unconscious for most of their waking times, just like we have and live a vast amount of time in ‘auto-pilot’ mode.
I don’t know about you, but I would rather live a life filled with joy, excitement, fun, and enthusiasm like a child, than a life filled with pressure, doubt, fear, and scarcity like many adults do!
WE CAN STILL BE DOING THE SAME THINGS DURING OUR DAYS, HOWEVER, IT IS JUST BY CHANGING OUR ATTITUDE THAT WE WILL BE ABLE TO RADICALLY IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF OUR LIVES.
WE COULD THEN TEACH OUR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN, BECAUSE OF OUR DIRECT EXPERIENCE, HOW TO LIVE A WONDERFUL AND FORFILLLING, LIFE!
So, if we want to do that which is of the greatest value for our children, we should only give thoughts to that which we want for ourselves and them, and then our children will receive only these wanted thoughts!
Shared with love and respect for all souls who are adventurous enough to play this game of life!
12 thoughts on “Are we teaching our children how to live a happy life?”
Parents play an important role in children’s lives, but the questions are whether the parents have enough knowledge and experiences to teach them how to live a happy life. For example, in my parents’ generation, there is no such focus on happiness. They followed what their parents (my grandparents) said and went on the path that they didn’t know they like it or not. So my parents literally didn’t know what happiness is, in my opinion. In this case, it turns out that I am educating them to enjoy life and relax, and they taught me how to be brave and to achieve my goals.
Hi Matt. It’s the same for many of the older generations. For them, they were conditioned to believe that life was all about struggle, hardships, and surviving. And of course, this is what they passed onto their children…… They didn’t know anything else!
Your parents are lucky that they can learn something about how to be happy from you now. It’s never too late!
I wish you all the best and trust you will make your life as happy as possible.
I think that some people should really not have any children. Having a child is an immense responsibility and there are too many children who are having a crappy childhood and adolescence due to parents who are unable to deal with their issues. I myself was raised in a harsh and loveless home and it has left its mark on me. Perhaps this is the reason why I do not have children. Although I would like to have children, I know how big of a responsibility it is and I don’t want to make such horrible mistakes like my parents did. I know I won’t do what they did, but still … I would want to give the best to my child, but it just is such a huge responsibility.
There should really be a manual on how to raise kids and especially on how not to instill fears and insecurities into them. After I left my home, it took me many years to get over my childhood and adolescence and unlearn what my parents had taught me.
Sadly, your story is not uncommon. Too many people have grown up and are still growing up in families who have no idea of the wonderful opportunity that they have been given by having a child.
The potential within each and every one of us when we are first conceived is beyond belief, and yet for most of us, this potential is slowly and surely diminished with each passing year. The more rules, restrictions, regulations, etc. that we become subject to the less our light is able to shine.
Often I have seen beautiful, vibrant, and enthuastic children forced to conform over and over again and made to follow pointless rules. They reach a point when their natural zest and spontaneity for life is ‘broken’ and they almost become defeated and just give in to the mundanity of ‘normal’ life. They conform to what their parents, teachers, and societies expect so they can fit in and not become an outcast.
It’s often not until they become older that they realize that they have options to change who they were made to be. Like you, many of us have chosen to break free of some of the draconian conditioning we received as children to realize that the world is so much bigger and so much brighter than we were led to believe.
This reminds me of a quote I read the other day which goes something like this: If ordinary minds do not stretch themselves to grow and develop, they are only ever going to consider the ordinary things in life- but there is always so much more to aspire to.
Congratulations on being brave and strong enough to unlearn some of the crap that was instilled into you as a child.
I wish you well on your journey, and would like to you know that ‘life can be as good as we allow it to be.’
Think about it. How much of the good stuff are you allowing into your life?
With love and respect for your journey,
Hi Andrew, there is no handbook for how we raise our kids which brings me to a point, why is it nowadays that there are so many do-gooders that create rules and control the way we should?
I know I am generations away but when I was growing up we didn’t have do-gooders and technology and respected our elders, and had social skills because we were always out playing with other kids, that unfortunately is not present in today’s society.
Is it that bringing up a family is much more expensive today and that we have to work and therefore neglect the important things?
Families feel more at ease nowadays buying the next best high tech toy or mobile phone, instead of spending precious time with their kids.
Thank you for sharing what is a great article.
I loved growing up in the early seventies. I think it was a great time to be alive. We didn’t need to lock the front door, and we would always be out playing late, (or until dinner time) with friends from all around the neighborhood.
We made many of our own props, (bows and arrows, trollies, clay forts, etc.), used our imaginations, and had a blast! Every day was an adventure. It kept us fit as well as giving our creative minds a good working over.
I have to agree with you that now there are too many rules, regulations, restrictions…… The world has changed, and it’s not all for the best. But it has changed, and we have to adapt and just do the best we can.
The need to work for money is a fundamental issue. Working adds stress for the parents as well as taking away their time….. so less time with their kids.
The kids’ young and impressionable minds are being filled with information from other sources, and it’s not necessarily the information that we would want them to be exposed to, and this is one of the main reasons why I suggest that we need to get our own houses in order before we decide to raise a family.
If we can become financially secure first, we will be able to give our newborn’s the quality time that they deserve, and raise them to become awesome adults in their own right.
I wish you all the best,
Quite an interesting article. Your first paragraph made me smile-it would have been great to receive detailed instructions on how to raise a child when you get one. It would have saved us from many fears and worries. But, that’s also a beauty of a child raising-you try to find your own ways, which will only work between you. Your other child will usually already need a different approach. When you achieve the right tone between you, it becomes the most rewarding thing in your life, in my opinion. And, then, you have to be able early enough to let them walk their own paths, but be there if they need your support.
I like to believe that we provided a good example for our, now all grown-up daughter, as a good set of values I seem to discover in her. I like to believe that we surrounded her with enough love and support that she can make her own choices and build her happiness on that foundation.
Hi Kerryanne. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
I was being cheeky when I suggested that an instruction manual would be a good idea. I agree with you that, we each have to find our own way that works for us, and each child will be different. A manual would never be able to cover all options!
Giving our children a foundation of love and unconditional support is very important, and as you have mentioned with your daughter, it has paved the way for her to make her own choices and build a happy life.
I wish you all the best,
An inspirational article, Andrew. Made me think what example I got myself and gave to my son. My parents grew up dirt poor during the crisis of the 1930s and were early 20 when the war came. So they didn’t have much to laugh about. Yet my mother was a very cheerful person who always tried to be light-hearted and never thought anything negative about people.
Yes, they did have an attitude of ‘work hard and make something of your life’, but I still think they gave me a good basis. And with all the development I made myself once grown up and independent, I feel like I have taken the good of both sides: being cheerful and light-hearted and working hard. And working on my happiness and giving an example to my son and grandkids.
Life is wonderful 🙂
Sounds great! Not all adversity is negative. It’s more like opportunities to learn and grow into better human beings.
It sounds like your parents made the best of a difficult time, and were able to give you a really great start in life….. which of course, you would naturally pass onto future generations.
it’s always great to hear from people who are enjoying their lives.
I wish you all the best 🙂
Hi, This is a very good article. I enjoyed reading it. It’s not easy today having kids, with all the routines from home to work, to school, and so much to organize. Parents need to learn to teach children good values, respect, (something that’s been gone for quite a time), positivity, and your children will follow what you teach them, and show them.
What I learned with time, now that my kids are all grown up, is that I should have taken more time…time to play with them, time to read with them, quality time to be with them because they grow fast.
Thank you for sharing
We are busy people, with so many things fighting for our attention every day, and when we get home from work, we have to think about dinner, catch up with our partner, go to the gym, etc. etc. and find quality time to spend with our kids!
However, our kids may have different ideas as they grow up, and they will want to do their own stuff, with their own friends. But while they are young, it’s really beneficial to spend as much quality time with them as possible, and this will set us up for a healthy lifetime relationship that can never be broken.
I wish you all the best on your journey,