Congratulations Graduates! (Now what will you do with your life!?!?)

Parents, do you remember, back in the day, when it seemed like EVERYONE was asking you that question? I wasn’t one of those people who knew exactly what they wanted to do, so the answer changed every time I gave it! I can remember feeling a little bit overwhelmed wondering, “Am I really supposed to know what I want to do? And what does it mean if I don’t?”

Fast-forward a few years, and I can’t remember the last time I really paused to think about that question. How about you? When is the last time you asked yourself, “What do I want in life?” Maybe you can’t remember. But I bet you think about it more than you realize, when it comes to what you want for your children.

In fact, I venture to say that every interaction I have with my kids ends up in some way reflecting my vision of what I hope they can achieve – to be “successful” – in life. There are times when I am so excited to see kindness, confidence, grit and self reflection. Other times I wonder how they will ever “grow up and leave the house.” At the end of this school year, I’m pausing to look back on those ups and downs.

Back to the “What do I want in life?” question. Can you name your own answers, top of mind? If not, take a minute to write them down. Now, take a look at this list of the top 8 answers named in studies over the past 10 years.

How many of your answers matched this list?

  1. Happiness.
  2. Money.
  3. Freedom/Confidence.
  4. Peace.
  5. Joy.
  6. Balance/Stability.
  7. Purpose.
  8. Passion.

And what are you doing every day to get closer to the things on your list? How would these answers compare to your kids’?

These are the questions I want to stop to find out as we transition from school year to summer.

In order to help my kids see the connection between their actions and their goals, I need to make a very concrete connection. This connection must be about what they want, in relation to their vision, their words, their goals, rather than what I want for them.

This is a KEY part for us, parents, in helping our kids define what’s most important. They have a whole new set of information at their fingertips, and with so many choices, they may simply be overwhelmed or have a false sense of how it works to work toward a goal. If this sounds familiar, the feeling that your kid doesn’t really know what it’s like to work toward something, you are not alone. It’s the worry we hear most from parents at Yellow Parachute.

I’ll press the pause button here for the week and assign some homework.

However it fits into your family’s routine, get each family member to WRITE DOWN (yes this is important which is why I put it in caps) 😉 5 things they want in their lives. The answers don’t need to be fancy, but they do need to be accurate. Good luck, have fun, and I’ll give you next steps next week.

PS If you want some help in guiding your Middle or High Schooler set vision, goals, and an action plan, visit our current course options!

Yours in the journey,