What Can Kids Teach Us?

At the risk of sounding like I’m bragging, I’m going to share a story about my son.  He did something these last few days that really impressed me.

My son is in the 5th grade.  It’s his second year at his current school.  He recently came home from school with instructions for an essay he was to write if he was interested in running for the student council.  He was a bit bummed that it was due just a couple of days later.  When I asked him about it, he stated he wasn’t sure what he was going to do and that he’d see if he even had time to write the essay.  The next evening I returned home from work to discover that he had, in fact, composed the essay on his own and had chosen to run.

He handed it in and waited to see what would happen next.  A few days later, he found out that he was selected to be one of the council representatives.  These students were then informed that if they wanted to run for President or Vice President of the student council, they would then have to read their essays in front of the entire 5th grade (90 students) during the lunch period of that day.

My son said that when he heard he’d have to read his essay publicly (and so soon), he was really scared.  He decided again, however, to go for it, despite being nervous, and delivered his speech first (“to get it over with”).  He told me that once he got rolling, he was fine.

As I write this, I don’t yet know if he was elected to either of the positions he sought.

This is what I DO know:

  • He made his own decisions. – No checking in with peers, siblings or parents.  He zeroed in on what HE wanted and didn’t allow any outside “noise” to enter into that decision-making process.  He understood that this was a decision he COULD make by himself.
  • He didn’t hesitate. – How often do we want things and ‘overthink’ how to go about getting them, procrastinate, or convince ourselves it’s too much trouble and not worth the effort?  I love that he simply went for it!
  • He forged ahead despite the discomfort. – He said he was scared and yet he knew he was safe.  He pushed himself to step outside of his comfort zone with no guarantee of what the results might be.

What stops US from going after what WE want?

What if we made choices (that obviously don’t impact others tremendously) without consulting the masses?

If we reduced the volume of the voices of others in our heads, would our choices and actions be more in line with our own desires and values?

What if we didn’t hesitate?  How much closer to our goals would we be?

Asking myself these questions, and watching the actions of my son, makes me realize that HE is sometimes a role model for ME.

How incredibly freeing to simply aim to go for it more often, trust my instincts (as opposed to looking for confirmation from others), and let go of second guessing and waiting!!

What could YOU do if you did the same?

Lessons learned from a 10 year old…

What have children taught you?



Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women and men, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

Laurie provides personal development assistance with regard to powerful issues such as how to make a change in your life and finding fulfillment and your life purpose. In addition, she works with clients interested in learning how to say no, setting limits and boundaries, as well as balancing work and life.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.

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