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Dreaming Big


The premise of following’s one’s bliss should never be undervalued or underestimated. Pursuing one’s dreams is a simple concept to comprehend yet utterly unattainable to achieve for much of the population due to a variety of reasons. External pressures such as the economy, family, religion, and politics all factor in to stifle ambition. But often internal pressures like the fear of failure present a greater obstacle. As a parent, one holds the key to unlocking a child’s potential. Conversely, parents can inadvertently destroy dreams by way of tendency towards risk aversion. What steps might a parent take to allow one’s children to dream big?

As a father of two young kids, I find myself arguably in the midst of the most important developmental time in their lives. In order to spark creativity within my children, I’ve come up with a few basic ideas.

The unofficial guide to Dreaming Big

  • Recognize it’s not about you. Your child has a clean slate. Removing your own personal history from your child’s life enables him or her to create their own unique story.
  • Observe your child closely. She or he will provide countless clues about their interests as well as their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Be a catalyst. Create an environment fostering creativity. Introduce art, science, literature, music, sports and more.
  • Be positive. Sometimes we have to fail to win. History is filled with countless individuals who suffered setbacks yet learned from their mistakes and achieved phenomenal heights.
  • Get inspired by your child. Kids possess a sense of wonder many adults have long forgotten. On many levels, children really do keep us young.

What’s on your list? How do you open the door to new possibilities? Please leave a comment below. Be sure to stop by our Facebook page to “Like” us, won’t you?

  • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

    “Recognizing it is not about you” is SO IMPORTANT and such a wise first point, Vincent! Too many parents think because a child may have their same DNA that this means they’re supposed to like the same things! NOT!

    The only other thing I believe is not to encourage your kids in totally unrealistic dreams – like “I’m going to President” – though you don’t have to say “No Way” in response. Instead, suggest they do what they’d need to do to qualify but also pursue something that isn’t quite so unlikely!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for your insight Bruce. Always appreciate your point of view. Providing information to help children comprehend the requirements of their aspirations makes a lot of sense.

  • Melissa Wardy

    I love this post, most especially the part about creating a positive space for creativity. Open ended play is so very important for our kids!

    • Anonymous

      Yes, open ended play helps children take flight. Thank you for commenting Melissa. Your advocacy for children, specifically the empowerment of girls is admirable.

  • Thomas Matlack

    I realized the best thing I can do for my kids is lead by example. It’s important to me that I encourage them to do the things they love simply because they love them.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Thomas for your insight. Encouragement can tip the balance from quitting to perseverance.

  • MSH

    Love the flying elephant!! Exposure to a variety of activities and places encourages my kids’ imagination and adventures. Positive reinforcement and approach to these activities and adventures versus a dreaded forced approach is key.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks! I like the elephant too, especially since it’s my son’s favorite animal. I agree a heavy handed approach would be detrimental for kids.

  • http://www.BoysRising.blogspot.com Autherine

    Give them the freedom to be a kid and to express creativity. Don’t get in the way, just let them believe that anything is possible. Give unconditional love.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for commenting Autherine. Unconditional love coupled with encouragement really makes a difference.

  • A_loscalzo

    Let the children explore & be mindful of the possibilities. Well said with sincerity Cutemonster.

    • Anonymous

      A wise approach. Thank you A_Loscalzo for your support.

  • Danigirllove

    great advice!, I have 2 boys and have concerns about video games stumping their creativity and imagination, I set limits, but my 6 1/2 year old tends to obsess about the video games, he will talk about them in great details, even when he doesnt play them for a few days, any advice on how to handle that?

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Danigirllove. As for video game usage, I think it’s prudent to set limits. In a nutshell, I get the whole frustration of one’s child being obsessed with video games. But to him it’s this new world he’s discovered which is his very own. A world at 6 1/2 which he can control. Powerfully compelling stuff for a little guy. Perhaps channeling his interest to another area might work. For example, I’m a huge proponent of comic books. It promotes literacy, etc. Or if he’s into LEGOs or some other construction toys, creating a world based on some of his favorite video games. Better still, weather permitting, role playing games outside at the park or the backyard. In each scenario, offer up new ideas to get his mental wheels spinning to break out of his video game centric focus.

  • http://www.mochadad.com mochadad

    I love to see my kids’ sense of wonder. I do my best to keep it alive and nurture it. They inspire me to keep dreaming.

    • cutemonster

      Agreed. At my most jaded moments, my children have re-opened my eyes to new possibilities. – Vincent