Adulting & Accountability | Leading By Example

Standing in the kitchen the other day, I had what I thought was an epiphany… only to realize that it was more like a shower thought. But I decided to do a blog post about it anyway.

As children, we are so eager to be adults; to be able to do anything we want whenever we want. No bed times, cereal for dinner, chips for lunch & never being required to clean up our messes. And as an adult, we realize just how naive we were to be so eager, but many of us are staying up all night, eating cereal for dinner, chips for lunch & never cleaning up after ourselves. We are living our childhood dreams.

This thought brings me to parenting. (Which I clearly no nothing about yet.) They say that if you lead by example, your child will follow suit, but if you’re asking your child to do something you’re not willing to do yourself (like eating vegetables), there is often no chance.

Stay with me here…

If you haven’t heard about The Marshmallow Test (which many of you probably have now considering it was one of the newest social media trends), check out this Wikipedia Article. — Back in the 70’s, a test was conducted with toddlers where they gave them a marshmallow, told them that if they didn’t eat it while the adult was gone they would receive another, & they then left the room to let the toddler fight their urge to eat it.
The crazy part is that the study showed decades later that the children who didn’t eat the marshmallow were highly likely to do better in school & into their adult lives (think SAT scores, grades, careers, etc). – The ability to show restraint; to have self discipline, carried them to new levels. And this makes perfect sense if you really think about it.

Now, I’m curious – how much of this has to do with the self discipline of their parents? — Can your self discipline & personal accountability essentially be shared with your child by example?

The photo above is of my beautiful little niece Sawyer. She’s goofy, funny & everything you’d ever wish your little girl could be. She also loves marshmallows. And while I have no intention of testing her self discipline, I hope she knows that I would love her like crazy regardless.