Who does most of the talking when you’re at your pediatrician’s office? More and more data is coming out that advises parents to let their children lead during their doctor’s appointments. By allowing your child to take a lead role in their health care, you are empowering them. But why stop with health care? You can empower your kids by giving them the space to question your spending too.
A generation or two ago, it was unheard of to question a doctor. Doctors would take offence to you questioning their authority. Some still do, but the medical field is starting to see the flaw in this approach. Many medical professionals now see that people need to take on a significant share of the responsibility for their health and well-being. And that can only happen if they feel empowered to find the information. And you can only do that if you can ask your doctor questions.
But empowerment isn’t just for your health and well-being. We need to incorporate that mindset into all facets of our lives. We have to remember what our ultimate goal is when we are raising children. It is often hard to remember that the purpose of parenting isn’t to get them to eat vegetables; it is to teach them about nutrition so that they can make healthy choices. It is not to administer medicine, it is to teach them about health and well-being so they can make the right choices, and feel comfortable asking a doctor question to ensure they stay healthy. And it is not to buy them the necessities. It is to teach them how to manage their resources. So that they will one day be able to live and support themselves without our help.
We are not raising children. We are training adults. It is a slog, and it is almost impossible not to get bogged down by the hundreds of tasks, and requests, and assignments, and appointments. But all of those are just the tactics. They are not the objective.
If we do our jobs well, in the end, our children will leave us and go off to live fulfilling lives as adults. How they define fulfillment may differ from us, but our goal is to give them the skills necessary to define and achieve that fulfillment. Preparing them for adulthood is why it is essential to empower your kids, given them the tools they need to question authorities. Not to be contrary, but to be curious to seek knowledge from knowledgeable people, and then help them to apply it to better themselves.
Empower via Questions
Concerning finances, don’t feel like you are the only authority they can question. There are aunts and uncles, grandparents, and an assortment of skilled professionals in your networks. Make sure you expose them to those trusted advisors. Build those relationships so that they can have a full breadth of information to empower them for what awaits them.