Monday, January 20, 2014

Focusing on the positives

I told myself earlier this month that I would put up a new blog post each week just to chronicle my thoughts leading up to my 40th birthday later in the year. I have already failed at that. It's the third week now and this is only my second post. Nevermind, I'll make it up.

The past few weeks have been good so far. My son started his last year of kindergarten at a new place. We moved him for many reasons but wanting a better student to teacher ratio was the main reason. It's ironic that his last year of preschool precedes his introduction to Chinese school where the number of students per class is enormous. We will deal with it one step at a time. I have faith that he will adapt wherever he goes. He has more confidence and personality than I ever did as a kid, so he will be fine.  

Personality wise my boy couldn't be more different than me. I was always shy and introverted as a kid whereas Siddharth always makes himself known wherever he goes. He is not a wallflower. Most of the time it works in his favor. At times however, he gets in trouble for it when he can't rein himself in from being too boisterous. 

One thing I'm grateful for is that Sidd finds joy wherever he goes. I can't take credit for that because that trait didn't come from me. I have always been predisposed to being miserable. His quick temper and huge appetite for good food however, is all me. On a positive note he's a natural footballer and a strong swimmer which is something that also came naturally to me as a kid. It's comforting to know certain good things can be passed down. 

Inherited traits aside, I've realised that kids get easily conditioned by their environment. We try to be as positive as we can about good behaviour while slowly trying to put a stop to the not so desirable ones. Gone are the days when you can just focus on what a child is bad at, which is what parents used to do when I was young. My lingering low self esteem issues as a kid can be tied to my parents never acknowledging the good and basically focusing only on what I was weak at and hated. That is the key to mediocrity. You will never be great at stuff you hate but there is a chance you will be great at the stuff you're good at and love.

Anyway, the approach I'm taking with my kid is that whatever he's good at, he can easily be great at, if he works at it. And if he can put in the effort to be great at what he's good at, surely he can do the same and be better at what he's weak at. That is all it is. Find a way to feel good about what you're doing and just do it. Save all the psychobabble for the quacks. 

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