Tired of reminding your child … homework, Clean your room, Chooses or select!!
Wouldn’t it be cool if they did it alone?
Habit 1/ is be proactive
It means taking responsibility for your own choices and behaviors. It is the key to all other habits. That’s why it comes first.
Proactive people say:
- “I am responsible for my own life.
- I am responsible for whether I am happy or sad.
- I can choose how I interact with others or situations.
- I’m in the driver’s seat.
- I take the initiative.
- I choose my actions, my situations, and my moods.
- I don’t blame others for my wrong actions.
- I do the right thing without being asked, even when no one is looking at me.
“Young children can learn these concepts easily and understand that different choices lead to different results. The goal is to teach them to think about those consequences before they decide what to do. Often times, they’ll surprise you by how keen they are to take charge of some areas of their private lives.
Discussions can focus on taking care of themselves, taking care of their things, and interacting or not responding to other people’s behavior without thinking, but rather planning ahead, and thinking about the right thing to do.
“I’m in charge of me.” This habit is the key to move from dependency to personal responsibility. This means that children are responsible for their choices, the results of those choices, how they respond in every situation, and taking care of their personal possessions. Don’t feel you need to “simplify” it for young children. They can understand
With your child, think of ways to be proactive. At home, at school and in public places.
Methods for installing the 1st habit at home:
- Teach your children that the Islamic guides us to be initiative. God Almighty says
﴿ وَلِكُلٍّ وِجْهَةٌ هُوَ مُوَلِّيهَا فَاسْتَبِقُوا الْخَيْرَاتِ ﴾
And that the Muslim is the one who makes correct decisions.
﴿ إِنَّا هَدَيْنَاهُ السَّبِيلَ إِمَّا شَاكِرًا وَإِمَّا كَفُورًا ﴾
- Allow choices: Do they want the blue plate or the yellow plate, do they want to sleep now or in 10 minutes, do they want to read or solve the puzzle. Regardless of the size or smallness of the selection, practice matters. They can start to take charge of what is going on in their own life.
- Set clear expectations, then give a chance to do it:
Have you ever felt frustrated by a task that you were expected to complete without them giving you clear instructions? Then someone will hold you accountable for details that he did not specify for you before?
It can feel the same for your children. If you assign them to a task, explain to them the description of success in completing that task. Even if you gave unclear commands before, review and clarify. Where should he\she put his\her bag when should they comes home? The shoes…? The coat….?
When you talk about a clean room, what does it look like? Only arrange games? Should he make the bed? Laundry clothes, where to put it?
- Make sure your expectations are appropriate to your child’s skill level.
- When should the task be completed? This should always be discussed in a calm tone and in a collaborative manner. If the child forgets the first few times, resist the urge to be reminded, wait until the agreed completion time and then ask if he has forgotten the agreement? Remind them at the time that they are responsible for that mission and tell them that you are counting on them to take responsibility for that – to be proactive.
Young children’s activities
- Most of us react to situations instantly, without spending time thinking about the consequences of our actions. Part of training in that habit is the ability to stop and think before we act.
- With your child, do some roles to practice the skill of pausing and thinking about different situations. Your goal in role-playing is to encourage your child to stop and think before reacting. Use the following ideas to start, then think of some other ideas that can be immediately applied in your child’s life.
- Play this role, you are your child’s friend ..) Say you have a new best friend a friend who lives near your house and you don’t want to play with him or her anymore. Apologize and then wait for your child’s reaction. .
- (In this role, you will be your child’s brother ..) Tell your child that you broke his favorite game by accident. Tell him that you don’t think it’s a very big problem because he has so many games. .
- (In this role-playing, you will play your child’s role and your child must play yours.). Tell your child that you are “very bored” and there is nothing fun to do. I complain that no one wants to play and that he (as a parent) needs to entertain you. .
- Read chapter one of the book, (The Seven Habits of Happy kids) with your child.
- If you have a child who is constantly complaining about boredom, ask him to come up with ideas with which he can do something nice for someone else, can be a neighbor, a friend, or a family member.
- Explain the control circle to him: draw two circles inside each other large enough to stand in. The middle circuit is the control circuit. Give your children examples of different things they can control (homework) and other things they cannot control (weather). Discuss with them how they can focus on what they can control to better manage their lives.
Older children begin to depend more and more on their peer group; they can let a rude comment by a friend spoil their entire day and they can easily become enrolled in misbehavior to gain acceptance from the gang or friends.
As a parent, it is important to help your teen understand the importance of taking responsibility for his or her life and choices. It is also important for you as a parent to let your child learn from his mistakes. If you always save the situation, your child will not learn responsibility and independence.
1- The next time your child forgets his homework or soccer shoes before a big game, think carefully before coming to the rescue. What will your child learn when you save the day?
2- If your child has a conflict with a teacher or gets a grade he thinks is unfair, encourage him to make an appointment with the teacher to discuss the matter in private rather than doing it for him or her.
3- Role-play: Play a role-playing game with them. In each situation we exchange the two ways of acting (once proactive and reactive once). Explain to your children how to handle the situation proactively instead of your behavior always being reactive.
3. Make an agreement with your teen to stop an unhealthy habit. Learn about this habit. For example:
You want to stop (smoking, overeating, watching TV a lot, not exercising, etc.)
Choose a start date, end date, and check-in dates along the way. Explain to your teenager
Research shows that it takes 21 days to start a new habit or stop an old one, so it’s important not to get discouraged or give up too quickly.
4- Discuss with your teenager topics where he can challenge peer pressure and stand up for his own opinion or what he thinks is right about it. Tell him that you really want to know his opinion, not that he tells you what he expects you want to hear. You can use a role-playing game to prepare him to respond to his peers on a specific topic.
5- Teach him that, confidence in a certain relationship, is much similar to a checking account with a bank. If you make a lot of deposits, you gain high confidence and a big account. If you make a lot of withdrawals, you will have a low balance. Share this idea with your teen, then think of things you could do to increase your deposits with each other. Let your teen do most of the talking and really listen to his thoughts. Ask your child to list what personal deposits and withdrawals might be. You can also make your own list of what you think will be your deposits or withdrawals.
6- Help your children write their own life story. Get them to tell you about their feelings when they can’t do anything they want. What they do when someone labels them with a bad name or is harassing them. What if they forget their homework? What words or verbs can a child choose to use in such situations? Explore both the positive and negative options with them and talk about the potential consequences of each.
Be careful to use the following words in your daily dealings with your children:
“Do you want ___ or _____? Good Choice.
“Thank you for being proactive and for keeping your coat on.” Do you remember ‘pausing and thinking’ before responding this way? What is the best way to respond? ‘
“We agreed that your room must be clean before you can go to your friend’s house. It doesn’t look like I would imagine a clean room. Were my expectations unclear? “Looks like you have a problem. What do you think you can do about it? “Tell me what you think here.”
Tell them examples from the biography, of the Messenger of God:
On one occasion, the people of Medina were terrified one night, and people set off towards the sound, and the Messenger of God, peace be upon him, preceded them to the sound to check the sound.
The Messenger of God always made the right decisions:
- After the Kaaba was rebuilt, a dispute arose over who would put the Black Stone in its place, and the tribes were about to fight over that. So the Messenger of God put his garment and put the stone on it, and each of them grabbed a side and raised it to his place together, then moved it to his place with his honorable hands.
- The Messenger of God resisted the temptation of the unbelievers and he was patient with that and did not accept compromise or temptation of money, authority or women.
- After the incident at Taif, God sent the angel of the Mountains to inform the Messenger of God that God had commanded him to obey him if he wanted to approximate the mountains to crush those who had harmed him. But the Messenger of God took the decision of patience and forgiveness, hoping that their offspring will believe in God.
- One of the Arabs turned to the Messenger of God for help to restore his right with Abu Jahl. Despite the well-known hate of Abu Jahl to the Messenger of God, the Messenger of God made a decision to help the Bedouin. God protected his Messenger and threw terror into the heart of Abu Jahl and restored the money of the Bedouin.
- When the Messenger of God went to trade with Mrs. Khadija’s money, Maysara the servant of Mrs. Khadija, testified that prophet Mohamed, showed the highest degree of faithfulness, sincerity and wisdom. We do not forget that he was called the honest and sincere. Commitment to good manners is a big decision made by people of high determination
Models from the life of the Companions:
- Our master Abu Bakr Al-Siddiq took the initiative of redeeming and freeing weak slaves during the stage of persecution in Makkah.
- Our master Uthman took the initiative to buy the well of Medina when one of the Jews took control of it and donated it to the Muslims
- Our master Omar, on the first day of his conversion to Islam, took the initiative to announce the religion of truth in Makkah, so the Muslims went out in the first march of two rows, one of them led by Hamzah and the other under the leadership of our master Umar and professed their religion on the streets of Makkah.
- Our master Bilal, despite his slavery, made a decision to enter the religion of Islam and endured the result of his decision from the torture of Umayya bin Khalaf in the scorching desert of Mecca until he was redeemed by our master Abu Bakr.
And the stories of initiative in the life of the Messenger of God and his companions do not end with making the right decision and adhering to the right thing even if they were not under the supervision of others and then they accept the consequences of the decision they took with the utmost courage and patience
How can I be proactive?
- Take responsibility for your choices, and take a stand
- Use your proactive language to think positively
- Think before you act
- Always find a way to achieve your goal.
- Verify that you cannot control everything that happens to you
- Get over when something bad happens. Just imagine that you push on the stop button, when you have a situation that you want to respond to, to give yourself the opportunity to choose the appropriate response, and use the following tools:
- Self-awareness: Stand out of the situation and look objectively
- Listen to your inner voice to find out what is right and wrong
- You can visualize new proposals
- Use your principles to help make choices
- Use your proactive language
- Turn negatives into positives