Learning & Development

This Children’s Day give wings to your child’s aspirations by approving their career choices

Written by Archana Singh Nughaal
Published: November 5, 2022

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Currently working in Pinegrove School in Kasauli Hills, Archana Nughaal is an educationist with over 14 years of experience. Her certifications include Army Commander's Commendation, Management & Personality Development DSSC, Wellington and MBA from Utkal University.

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A career counsellor was invited to a school to guide young minds. On being asked as to what they would want to become when they grow up, the counsellor was completely taken aback by the responses. Who would have imagined 8 & 9-year-olds aspiring to become Fashion Stylists, Talent Managers, Code Analysts, Voice Artists, Gaming Designers, Organic Farmers, Vegan Chefs, Spiritual Healers, and Sports Commentators? There was hardly any mention of the regular run-of-the-mill professions like Doctors, Engineers, Teachers, or Astronauts. 

Yes! Believe it or not, the days when kids would mindlessly follow orders and submit to their parents without inquiry are long gone. Children are exposed to novel ideas, cutting-edge notions, and unconventional thinking as technology permeates every part of our daily life. They have mastered the knack of challenging every action or event and frequently evolve to establish a thought process of their own. The biggest mistake a parent may do in such a situation is to force their opinions on the child or to make them give up their goals.

Every parent aspires for their kid to be:
– Happy and healthy
– Well-behaved with peers and elders
– Intelligent and preferably a top performer
– A multi-talented all-rounder
– A beloved personality

A touch of genius, nonetheless. Whatever the situation, there’s nothing wrong with having aspirations for your child. However, it is more crucial to prioritise their aspirations first, above your own. As a parent, know where to draw the line between expectations and over-expectations.

Parenting today is more about becoming their friend or mentor. This approach can help you understand your kid’s life goals and desires. Of course, your child will seek your guidance while deciding about their career path. Not to forget, there will be a lot of peer pressure as well. Your role as a parent will be to help them create the roadmap after considering what they truly wish and enjoy pursuing. In other words, be a facilitator, not the one who influences their choices. 

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Role of parents in student’s life

Needless to say, every child is unique and has a mind of his own. Hence there can be no defined set of rules for parenting as such. Nobody knows your child better than you do. However, there are a few aspects that you can surely consider to inculcate positive parenting:

  • Open up with your child and hear them out
    Sit down with your child and start a discussion about their area of interest. Introduce them to future aspirations, and goals gradually. It’s crucial that you are the one starting the conversation. PAUSE and LISTEN when you’re done introducing the idea.
  • Do not mock their decisions
    Whatever their interests are, don’t dismiss, invalidate, or condemn them, no matter how insignificant you may think they are. The last thing you want to do is be judgmental. While some kids need more guidance, others are naturally motivated and conduct extensive research and work on their own. Whatever the situation, let your child know that you are there for them. Advise them in terms of safety, physical capabilities, talents, and college access.
  • Make them aware of what’s going on in the outside world
    Children see the world in a special way. They know very little about the outside working environment and how competitive it is. In order to help them make better decisions in life, as a parent you should present them with the real picture. In addition, it would be helpful if you asked your kids to evaluate the viability of their career goals in light of the current job market. Also, let them know about the hidden dangers that can act as a wake-up call.
  • It’s OK If you can’t motivate them, but don’t discourage them
    Sometimes parents find it difficult to understand their child’s goals for school, work, or life. If you can’t inspire them in these situations, just remain passive and don’t discourage them. Children who feel defeated, overburdened, or unworthy frequently believe that they do not deserve kindness. They intentionally act harshly because they don’t feel good about themselves. It’s like the child is saying, “I don’t deserve to be loved, so I’ll be on my own.  I’ll get what I deserve in this manner.”  Hear them out and address the underlying problem. You’ll be able to find a solution when they eventually open up about their troubles
  • Don’t let your kid succumb to peer pressure and the herd mentality
    Encourage your child to feel confident about themselves. Celebrate their accomplishments and praise them when they choose wisely. Positive self-esteem in children makes them more resistant to negative peer pressure. The same could be said about friendships. Children who have friends whose families share your values are more likely to resist negative peer pressure.
  • Avoid micromanaging them
    It robs kids of priceless learning opportunities and simply fosters animosity and harms relationships. Children grow older and wiser when given the chance to organise their own tasks and take ownership of their decisions. Additionally, they acquire self-reliance and organisational abilities that will help them in school and afterwards. If they require assistance, give them tools they may use to discover the solutions on their own.
  • Encourage your child to pursue their passions
    Giving your child the freedom to try new activities can aid in the discovery of their interests, abilities, and weaknesses. Encourage them to get their hands dirty in whatever area of interest they have- from painting lessons to weekend ballet rehearsals to beatboxing. This will genuinely guarantee that they discover what motivates them and inspires them to follow their hobbies with a passion. 
  • Embrace them as they are. Don’t anticipate too much.
    Your child’s aspirations could be derailed by expectations. It is incredibly unjust of you to label them as if they were a part of you and expect them to realise your aspirations. Your children might not be as interested in things as you are. They possess a distinct style of thinking and view of the world. Therefore, embrace them as they are and focus on honing their talents and skills.

To conclude

In order to understand your children’s goals and desires, you must remain composed and patient. That’s what positive parenting is all about. Keep in mind that collaborating as a team will ensure that your child has a fun and safe journey. Make sure you pick the greatest in the world when it comes to guiding your kids towards the right route. It’ll take work on your part, but it’ll be worth it!

 Always remember – Faith works, Force doesn’t! 

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The views expressed are that of the expert alone.

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