Kids & Failure

The prevailing pressure that parents feel is to prevent kids from experiencing failure. At all costs. And, for the rare time that it does slip through….to fix it asap.

But there is growing evidence that the inability to tolerate failure multiplies anxiety.

In this 50-second video, Brene´ Brown takes the pressure off parents, and therefore, off our kids:

Parents can:

  •   Teach kids how to feel it
  •   How to be curious about it
  •   How to name it
  •   How to ask for what they need

Here’s a fun video that you might want to watch with your children, pausing it and trying to guess who the person was that “failed” and what they eventually went on to accomplish:

 

Three Pillars of Adulthood

The path to adult status is highly individual now and therefore, demands custom parenting. Most college and post-college students seem able to build one or two pillars but it’s a rare kid who can secure all three before age 30.

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Independence – Defined as the “final” time kids move out, need zero financial assistance and begin to flourish

Marriage – Those few who are able to navigate the bizarre dating scene and resist the flow of culture

Career – The challenge of aligning gifts, education and compensation in a satisfying niche.

If you have four children, statistics predict that only one will complete the pillars in their twenties. Parenting late adolescents therefore, takes on more significance than ever before. Most of us feel confused and trapped in constant tension- that place between what it was like when we grew up and what it is now.

You’re not alone.

Here’s a question I challenge you with:

When the future we’d envisioned for our kids doesn’t play out “correctly,” what happens to our faith?

This is where the tables turn. Where it becomes more about us than about….the kids. It’s a call to enter the deep mystery of God. Uncomfortable. Scary. Confusing. But only for a time….as long as it takes God to convert our focus from “kid drama” to Himself.

You’ll recognize parents who’ve been through this. They’re humble and okay with mystery, steady and persevering, quiet with no easy answers.

Check out Hagar- the Egyptian servant of Abraham and Sarah in Genesis 16 and 21. She’s desperate and without hope and now she has a child. At the point of utter desolation, she discovers two things about God:

God sees me….

God hears my child crying….

 

Connection v. Relationship

Mike Thomas recently posted on Facebook,

I just saw this guy at Starbucks who wasn’t on his phone or laptop but was just sitting there drinking his coffee…
Like a psychopath.      

Sherry Turkle might reply,

“we’re so connected that being alone seems like a problem that only technology can solve.”

How about you? Do you sense the low grade panic when alone, prompting you to reach for the “tiny god,” the device of choice? How do you handle “alone?”

Turkle goes on to examine the interconnectedness of being alone and deep relationships. To embrace solitude is to reflect on our own vulnerability, to become okay with it. In fact, it’s one of the key skills necessary for recognizing the same struggles in others.

If we can’t see it in our own lives, we’ll never catch it in another and therefore, never really grow a deep relationship. To know God in the place of brokenness qualifies us to truly love well.

Need a conversation starter for a car ride or meal?

Talk Sheet

  • I make time for solitude

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • I’m comfortable with solitude

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • My children (rate each one) are comfortable with solitude

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • I’m drifting away from conversation and moving towards the efficiency of connection

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • I can relate to the following, “I’m uncomfortable with conversation because it takes place in real time and I have less control over what I say.”

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • Technology enchants and helps us forget….

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)

  • Phones are becoming our “Tiny Gods”

(no)     1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9          10   (yes)