Here are some reminders to help
parents with their important mentoring role courtesy Sally Meeker of Youth Alternatives:
1. Match up what you say and do - easy to watch television while our kids do homework or expect our children to pick up while we might be a slob.
2. Admit mistakes and help your children learn from them - something as simple as working to change a bad habit and letting your family support you. A swearing jar where money goes when anyone gets caught swearing. Or something serious like committing to not drinking and driving.
3. Demonstrate your values through daily living - think about how you do want your kids to act - are you prudent with money, hurrying through life, eating meals together, yelling and throwing temper tantrums. It takes some work, but thinking ahead about how your kids perceive your behavior helps keep you one your toes -(more aware of what you're doing and how it's influencing your children)
4. Notice how your children mimic you - it's a great way to catch yourself and change bad habits (swearing, bragging, manners as well as being courteous, helpful, caring)
5. Form a team- you aren't the only one who can be a role model for your child - include a spouse, grandparent or friend to help show your kids new skills, think through a problem or have a new experience
6. Be present - no matter what else you do - show up - sports events, meals together, bedtime, school events. Kids notice.
It's the most important job of any mentor - it shows your children you care