3 Keys to Maximize Influence with Your ChildrenAugust 9, 2013
Our influence is felt most significantly by those closest to us. This is especially true as it relates to our children. Henry Ward Beecher said, “The humblest of individual exerts some influence; either for good or evil upon others.” Regardless of how you influence your children, be certain, they are being influenced. There are many factors in having a positive effect in their lives, but here are three keys that are certain to have long-lasting, and far-reaching results:
Hanz Finzel said, “Only through association is there transformation- we cannot change people if we do not spend time with them.” More than anything else, our children need our time and attention. Years from now they will not remember the gifts or presents you bought them as much as they remember the moments you shared with them.
We are instructed in Scripture to “train up a child” in the way he should go. Training involves trial and error, correction and discipline, love and grace. Effective training is ultimately rooted in the relationship you have with your child. At the end of the day, no one else is responsible for the training of your child but you (not teachers, preachers, cultural heroes, etc). Training involves patience, wisdom, and the willingness to forgive. It is more than telling them what to do, it is showing them what to do.
John Maxwell said, “The length and breadth of our influence on others are directly related to the depth of concern we have for them.” Trust is built through consistent love and affection. It is the hinge upon which our influence turns. “Trust is the framework that supports all relationships” said James Kouzes, “Building that structure of trust begins when one person takes a risk and opens up to another. If you are the leader in the relationship, you need to ante up first.” If we wait ten or fifteen years to develop trust in our relationships, odds are it will never happen. Invest early and they will trust you throughout the course of their lives.
Parenting is not only a gift from God, it is one of the most stringent responsibilities we have as adults. Utilize these three keys and it is certain you will open up the door to their hearts.