This article continues on the article entitled Parenting During Covid with more details about how to get children away from the video games and into a more productive and happy life.
This article will help a lot of adults too.
In the section THE CHILD’S POINT OF VIEW, I explained how the child will feel and what their thoughts are, even if they do not realize it because it comes from the core nature of being human rather than the personality, and how they will deal with the current situation.
I will assume you have followed the instructions in the section; THE METHOD TO FIND YOUR CHARACTER AND THAT OF YOUR CHILD, and have found the things that you, or your child, liked to do.
Having found if the child liked to draw, or build things, or read books and learn new things, to explore and be active playing physical games or things with the mind, did they enjoy music and would dance around, or they did not like music but preferred to play in the garden, you will have narrowed down the type of thing they liked.
It is pretty easy to know if they loved and had a talent for music, or drawing, and I mean a real talent, not just a parents opinion which is usually tone deaf.
If they liked building things, then an interest in architecture or building things as an engineer or any other trade would be suitable. I know a Hungarian Jew who came to Canada out of the concentration camp, could not speak a word of English or French, and was penniless on his arrival. He got a job as a labourer in construction, assisting a house painter. I’ll cut to the time he died, worth over $50 million dollars as a large property developer. I tell you this true story to make the point that you should not reject anything because you think there is no money or future in it. Anything can be expanded.
One of my students was a corporate professional and hated her life. She quit and moved far from her home. Lost and confused, she came to my school and had no idea what to do with her life. Using this method, we found that she loved drumming. But how is she going to make a living playing with drums?
Going a bit deeper, we found she liked to be an entertainer, so after a bit of time playing around with different ideas, she eventually became a clown drumming teacher entertainer for kids and the elderly.
She now and for the last 20 years has had a very successful career, educating, performing, acting in many TV shows and films, and has had a positive influence in perhaps thousands of lives building bridges between cultures and families, and makes a good living too, all because as a kid she loved to drum.
The fear of what her parents would say kept her stuck for a couple of years before she actually started on the path that was just right for her; “You want to leave a high paying successful corporate career to do WHAT???”
I implore all parents, do not make your child waste precious years of their life. And I implore you, do not waste the rest of the life you have left.
CONTINUE THE SEARCH
As you can see, even the simplest childhood game can be the key to a very successful life. The problem with the kids now is that they are not encouraged to find and do what their real love is, and, they feel totally alone.
Do the exercise again, do it harder, deeper, with a more open mind to anything they liked, and remember that a child does not know that there are Arabic drums, African drums, Turkish drums, or any drums at all. They will bang on the pots and pans. Instead of yelling at your kid for damaging your pots and pans and making a noise, open your mind to see what they are trying to do, and not what you see.
You see a cooking pot, the child sees something they can make noise with. They don’t have fixed opinions about what a thing is. If you take a big enough pot and put it on the floor upside down, it’s a chair, or a stepping stool so you can reach the counter and take the cookies.
This is the quality of creativity and invention, and problem solving. See what something can be used for, rather than only what you are told it’s to be used as.
THE PROBLEM WITH ADULTS
You have lost your creativity in place of a fixed opinion about everything. If you have to write something down quickly and do not have a pen, but a woman’s eye liner pencil is at hand, then use that. It’s not an eyeliner, it’s a thing you can write with, or draw with.
Start to see things as things and not under the definition of what you call it and use it for alone. See everything as if you never saw it before and have no idea what it is, and then think of what you can do with it.
That is the power of a child’s mind that adults have lost, and when you lost that, you lost your spark of creativity and the vast potential of life. When that died, life started to go down a narrow dark path. That’s how the toddler, pre-teen or young teenager feels having been told; “NO NO NO, that is not what you do with that thing.”
So having accepted that creativity is a bad thing because when you tried you got shot down, the exploring and creative mind is ignored, but not dead, at least not yet. So the hunger of that mind says to the consciousness; “Find a way to be creative and free so I can live again!”
And again, we see why kids love video games and ignore or disrespect their parents.They make the rules in the game and be creative in how to deal with new challenges.
RESUSCITATE THEIR CREATIVITY
This exercise can be done to any degree you have the ability to do, which means, with 5 or 10 or 100 items, just do what you can.
Since I was pre-teens, I did not have parents to support my creativity in any way, so I read the yellow pages. For those of you who do not know what that is, long long ago before the internet, there was a big book that listed every business in a city, organized by type of business. That book was a ‘Google’ of everything that could be done. I read the index of that book, because it listed everything, so I could get ideas of what I liked.
The exercise I propose is hands on. Get as many different things as you can into one room. What you choose depends on the age of your child, but do not rule anything out because of gender. Some of the great cooks are men, so don’t think kitchen and cooking is only for girls, and there are some great woman pilots, so don’t rule out mechanical things as a ‘boy’s thing’.
Paints and things to draw, lego, things to build stuff, musical instruments, dolls, cooking stuff to play house, broken gadgets like a toaster or small mechanical device to see if they can be fixed or take apart to see how they work, binoculars to watch nature, telescope to see the stars, the list is endless, really endless. The more things you have in that room the better.
Let the kid go crazy, without any guidance or comments from you, so they can do anything they want. In fact, if the parent is not there to show their approval or disapproval the better. But someone has to be there to encourage and play with the kid, and if there are a few kids to put together, that is also much more effective.
Let them play and do anything they want then talk to them to find out what they enjoyed and why, to see what you can narrow down. If for instance, the kid likes musical instruments, or takes anything in the room to make noise which is a child’s symphony, then take the exercise to the next stage.
Repeat it but this time with a variety of items more focused in that direction. Drums, guitar, piano, etc.
Eventually, something will show, and now it is up to the parent to determine the future of their child. Remember the previous article spoke of the 10 year old boy who loved to draw and cook? Let me tell you how that turned out.
His mother said that she will stop some of the intellectual tuition and put him in an after school art class. That made him so ecstatic, the mother said she had never seen him so happy. A couple of days later the boy told his mother he did not want to go to the art class and would stay with the math tuition.
What happened? Why would the boy choose something he hated instead of what he loved? The boy’s father had abandoned the family when the boy was so young he never knew his father. His mother is all he had and he loved her so much he would do anything to please her. Sadly, he felt his mother wanted him to be better in maths and so he gave up his happiness to make her happy.
Let this be a warning to you about how you respond, interact and encourage your child. Let it also trigger memories of when you were a kid.
Find the natural character of your child.
Find your natural character.
Encourage your child to find what they love to do with a sincere heart and love that cares about them, not about you.
Just remember when you got pregnant or wanted a kid, YOU brought that kid to this world. Did you want to produce a slave and servant to take care of you when you are old? Or do you have a responsibility to raise that helpless little creature to have a happy life in this very difficult world.
Be their friend by experiencing the life they are living from their point of view. Give up all the things you ‘know’ and start to see what you are missing by being creative and seeing the world and everything in it as if you are an alien just arrived on this bizarre planet that is looking very horrible and getting a lot worse with no ability to make the money you need to live, to not be able to travel, to not be able to see your friends, to not be able to visit your family, to face a future of being totally alone.
Socialize more, as much as possible. Do not let the government destroy your child’s emotional development any more than they have already done. Do not let the damage continue and get worse.
Organize to be with your friends, get your kids to play with each other, set up a computer gaming room if that is what it takes, so they play the games while sitting close to each other.
Find ways to get the kids to play with each other, to talk, to laugh, to invent and create imaginary worlds that they would like to live in. Take every imaginary invention they come up with and find out how that can be the next best thing, a new product, service or invention.
If you cannot figure that out yourself, form a club of parents and professionals in as many fields as you can; architect, engineer, mathematician, artists, musician, film producer, sports junkie, entrepreneur, and see what each of them can think of. Someone will ‘click’ with this ‘childish silly idea’ and see how that can be turned into a new business or product.
I have owned companies in over 20 different industries and consulted to over 100 because I can turn any idea into something practical. That is what you need to do for your kid. Give them hope that there is a future and someone who knows how and what to do to make them valuable.
Regardless of age, what we all want is a partner, be that an adult relationship or a child’s friendship, someone who we can be with in the same room and not have to talk, but have someone there, just because it is comforting to have someone there. That comfort is an emotional food we need at every age of our life.
When someone says they like being alone, that is just to deal with the pain of feeling they have no other choice. Give them a choice that fits what they want, not what you think is best because that is often just what you want.