Big up and inspire your child to succeed

THERE is a link between success and inspiration. Since success inspires success, a successful person is also an inspiration to others.
You cannot be inspired by a failure. Within each one of us there is a deep-seated need for inspirational moments, situations and people.
Which, I suppose, is why Ralph Waldo Emmerson, the American essayist and poet, famously said, “Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”
When and where must inspiration start? If charity begins at home, so must inspiration.
When discussing mentorship in the last few weeks, we saw how the first port of mentorship is one’s home – or, to be more specific, one’s parents or guardian.
And if a mentor must also be an inspirer, then the first and most important source of inspiration is one’s home: one’s parents or guardians.
A parent, after all, is a leader in the home, and a leader must inspire; they must inspire hope, dreams, determination, and all positive values a child needs to grow up responsibly and to succeed in life.
Robin S Sharma, the world-famous Canadian leadership trainer, says of leadership: “Leadership is not about a title or designation. It’s about impact, influence and inspiration.”
In similar vein, John Quincy Adams, the sixth president of the United States, once said, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
One of the roles of a parent is to inspire their child to become an inspiration to others by excelling in what they do – a point well captured by the American basketball legend Kobe Bryant: “The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.”
A parent can inspire their child by both word and deed, not merely by talking. Children, after all, learn more from what they see than what they hear.
If you are a parent, do not be the type that says one thing with your mouth and quite the opposite with your actions – the do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do type of parent.
Are you a parent? Then you need to take one hard look in the mirror and ask yourself some tough but honest questions.
Does the environment in your home provide an atmosphere that inspires your children to aspire for greater things?
It is possible to bring up your children in an environment that depresses or suppresses them; an environment that makes them give up on their dreams. For instance, if your home knows nothing but husband-on-wife or wife-on-husband violence, think again.
You also need to ask yourself whether your life as a parent provides any inspiration to your child or children.
Would you say you inspire your child or children in ANYTHING? Is there any particular aspect of your life that you think inspires your child or children?
Would you say your children are proud of you – or perhaps they are too ashamed to even be associated with you? Can your child proudly stand among friends and point at you saying, “That’s my Dad!” or “That’s my Mum!”
Sad as it is, there are children who see nothing inspirational about their father of mother – nothing to be proud of.
When their father or mother shows up at their school, they run and hide.
There are children who are inspired by their uncle or the man or woman next door – anyone except their own father or mother.
It is a tragedy to be a parent and yet fail to inspire your own child or children in a single thing.
All they see in you is failure and shame.
Parents, let us all big up and be an inspiration to our children.