We would then take a few seconds to contemplate how we could find and nurture these experiences. Inevitably, the process of discovering our experiences would entail giving, sharing, or creating those experiences with others. This created a dynamic where we always felt connected to others and motivated to treat others in the same way that we would want to be treated. It also created a vision that engaged others who wanted success and fulfillment as much as we did. And most important, it allowed us to shape our own destinies, focusing on the experiences that would keep us inspired, creative, and passionate about each new day.
As parents, we hope we can instill values in our children that will give them confidence and inspire them to treat others with love and respect. The simple exercise described above is a powerful way to help children listen to what makes them feel good and then seek out and share those feelings with others in their world.
Name ten values that you hold most dear. Promise your child that you will teach these values to him or her by your own example.
I promise to remind you that there are many perspectives to any situation.
When Sumant was two-and-a-half years old, he went for his first expedition with his father. It was a big trip for his dad -- the first time he was going to spend several hours completely alone with his baby. He decided to take Sumant to the zoo.
Sumant was so excited when they reached the park. His father bought him a balloon and sat him upon his shoulders, and they went from one animal to the other. They reviewed all the appropriate animal sounds. They pointed out the brilliant colors on the parrots and the lovely feathers on the peacocks. Sumant's father then gave him a wonderful treat; they took a ride on an elephant around the park. It was one of the most special afternoons his father had ever spent.
When they arrived home, Sumant's mother came running out to the car. She grabbed Sumant, giving him hugs and kisses and asking if he had fun. Sumant was licking a lollipop, and he showed his mother the stuffed monkey that his father had bought him. His father beamed with pride, knowing that he had treated his son to an ultimate day of fun and learning. He was excited to hear Sumant's tales of the day.
"Tell Mama all that you saw," his father coaxed.
Sumant beamed with pride and responded, "Rocks, Mama. So many rocks."
Copyright © Mallika Chopra. Permission to republish granted to Pregnancy.org, LLC. Reprinted from: 100 Promises to My Baby by Mallika Chopra. Copyright © Mallika Chopra. Permission granted by Rodale, Inc., Emmaus, PA 18098.