Have you taken your children to the movies lately? Or for those with pre-teens and teens, how about a live concert? Justin Beiber, Katie Perry? I recently took my two grandchildren to see Kung Fu Panda II. We met several of their friends along with their parents and had a great time. (The kids more than the adults I must say, several of us found it a bit boring!)
We chose the afternoon matinee which gives discounted ticket prices and offers a drink/popcorn combo at a reduced price. However, later that evening I almost went into cardiac arrest when I realized I had spent almost $40.00! I honestly thought I must have misplaced money at first…until I began adding everything up! Tickets, snacks and oh yes, the 3-D glasses…Wow! I can’t imagine the cost of a live concert!
Many of you who have been following me regularly are aware of the fact that my parenting philosophy is rooted in what within the last few years has come to the forefront defined as the principles of the Universal Law of Attraction.
You probably also know that I was raised to live by these principles long before this became a household term. In short, I was taught that what you put forth will come back to you…not that different from the teachings in the Bible that says “What you sow, you will reap.” And that we can deliberately affect this by what we choose through our thoughts and beliefs.
From watching my parents raise their five children, I also learned that as a parent what we do by way of our actions and attitude has a powerful impact on how our children will approach life. Positive or Negative.
Now, bear with me while we switch gears here for a minute…
According to the Forbes top ten list, celebrities and sports figures earned between 34 million dollars (Tom Cruise) and Tiger Woods who was at the top earning 200 million dollars. (The number one spot is held by Oprah Winfrey but I chose to omit her because she is more of a teacher to the masses than a celebrity.) In contrast, the latest statistics show that the average pay salary for a public school teacher is approximately $40, 000 and the average income for a typical 4 member family in the United States is $ 56,000 per year.
With that being said, the question I bring to you is this…
Based on these statistics, what are we as a society saying to our children about our priorities and what we value in others and ourselves?
Another example was brought to my attention by a friend and colleague, Victoria Gazeley, when she posted on Face Book that in Japan they have a devastating earthquake and tsunami and people pull together and care for each other. In Vancouver, they lose a hockey game and all hell breaks loose - looting, burning, destruction.
So, again, what are we saying to our children? What is the society we live in teaching them about what is of value and how we are to treat one another? BUT here’s the kicker…WE, you and me, we are “society”. Society is not some abstract outer being that we can hold accountable. Each and every one of us makes up, contributes to and creates our "society".
As parents, we must assume the responsibility of the world our children are growing up in and we must all do our part to initiate change.
Change is not always easy, but it can be done and it starts with each and every one of us being willing to examine our core beliefs and the resulting consequences of those beliefs because this is what we are passing on to our children.
Children learn from what we model, not from what we say. When we freely choose to spend money on what entertains us and then choose not to balance that with giving either of ourselves or financially to those less fortunate or those that provide an important service, we are sending a clear message of what we believe is important in life...what holds the most value.
What if we were the generation that consciously chose to make the necessary changes? I believe we can be.