Michelangelo was reportedly once asked what he did for a living. He didn't answer that he was an artist; instead, he described his work as a sculptor as a process of removing the excess marble concealing the beauty of the figure within. His job, he was reported to have said, was a process of uncovering rather than creating. Parenting bright kids is just like this.
|Good Parenting Skills For Teenagers|
Bright kids are the people who can change the world. They are the people with all the spirit, energy, and get-up-and-go to make a difference. They are vigorous survivors. For them to broaden out to become the people they really can be, they need parents who not only survive but thrive.
Parents of bright kids need good ears, a good heart, and a good spirit.
By "good ears," I mean being able to quiet your own inner conversation and listen to your child, to hear the nuances of their stories, the values they express, and the hopes, dreams, and despair contained within them. This is an ongoing challenge because most people have two ways of being with others: talking and waiting to talk.
"Clean your ears" and rid yourself of everyday prejudices, assumptions, and short-hand ways of summarizing what people are saying. It is always easier to presume rather than to listen, but bright kids are not like everyone else: they have talents, skills, and vulnerabilities that are a unique and powerful mix.
Parents of bright kids often need to listen "behind the words." Bright kids, in the heat of battle, can say the most hurtful, heart-shattering things. Being able to listen behind the words to the fearfulness and anxiety allows parents to remain calm in stormy times and to preserve goodwill in their family.
A good heart
"A good heart" refers to being able to view people compassionately, to see the positives in bright kids and their actions - that is, to be able to see beyond the behavior to the underlying and to what the behavior is really trying to achieve.
The great drive of many bright kids can elicit in some adults a desire to control them. But bearing in mind these kids' great potential, and being prepared to reveal the beauty of the figure within, allows parents to avoid engaging in pointless battles.
Parents of bright kids receive a lot of advice. Much of it is unhelpful, of the "spare the rod and spoil the child" variety. Having a good heart also refers to being compassionate to yourself. No one has all the answers to parenting bright kids, but no one knows your bright kid better than you do. We all make mistakes from time to time and lose our cool or our perspective. At the end of the day, what matters is not that you were a perfect parent but that you were prepared to do what you could, by remaining a fierce friend to your bright kid, owning up when you made errors, doing what you said you would do, and maintaining as positive a relationship as you could.
I've heard that Mozart once wrote a musical composition that was so harmonically perfect, so technically balanced that it was, well, a bit soulless and dull. He then rewrote the piece, adding some dissonant passages and some notes that continued on for longer than was usually expected in pieces of this type to create some tension and drama. In some ways, people are like this: it is our imperfections that make us interesting. To find out more, you can check out Good Parenting Skills For Teenagers.