Okay, let me begin by making a confession. I am not a Rocket scientist. Yet today, I’m going to share with you a thing or two about Rocket science, in particular, a few things about a rocket booster. And despite my lay understanding, the things that I’m going to share are all supported by science. Well, at least that’s my story.
In the end, whether you deem this post to be Rocket science or plain ole common sense, you will soon discover one incontrovertible truth. The things shared will not only benefit parents but will also be beneficial for anyone committed to elevating the outcomes of children.
HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM
I’m sure that it will come as no surprise when you hear me say that I believe many children are not living up to their potential. In fact, I’m of the opinion that far too often, rather than being encouraged to reach for the stars, children are instead being conditioned to be mediocre or worse. I call this part of the national dumbing of America.
More on the intentional scheme to diminish the potential of children later. For now, I just want you and me to get on the same page – the page where the headline reads “Houston, We Have A Problem”.
FAILING CHILDREN AT AN ALARMING RATE
If you don’t already believe me or share my position about the diminishing expectations of children, spend a few hours with children especially high school students. Afterward, I would be willing to bet that not only will you believe me but you will also share my opinion.
This alarming phenomenon of waning hopes is especially evident in urban public schools where not only are educational outcomes disproportionately low but the expectations of greatness and conditions for success are equally depressed. Astoundingly, those most responsible for marginalizing potential, producing diminishing returns, and stagnating future possibilities share the children’s DNA.
Yes, you read that correctly! If producing a nation of sleepwalking giants wasn’t bad enough, the usual culprit of raising comatose children, in almost every case, are the children’s parents.
So many parents are caught up in themselves – advancing their careers, earning more money, reliving their youth, buying stuff, looking at TV/phones/tablets/computers, and building monuments to nothingness – that they lose perspective about what it means to be a parent. In large part, today’s children are grounded in average and pursuing lower elevations because parents either don’t understand and/or are choosing to neglect their role as rocket boosters.
EVERY CHILD REQUIRES A ROCKET BOOSTER
Odds are that you have watched a space launch at least once. While watching you probably noticed that there was a glaring discrepancy between the size of the rocket boosters and the space capsule. On average a rocket booster is the height of a 15 to 36 story building. The space capsule, on the other hand, is on average 13 feet.
For the space mission to be a success, enormous amounts of energy and assistance are required by the rocket boosters. Despite the rocket boosters’ enormity and huge payload, it does not consider itself more important than the much smaller and weaker space capsule. The rocket booster understands the mission and executes its task without wavering. The rocket booster knows that it exists simply to help the space capsule reach for the stars and beyond.
Just like a rocket booster, a parent’s role is to help their children launch – to be equipped and trained to reach for the stars. Like a rocket booster, a parent is supposed to burn up all their energy making sure their children have the chance to exceed all expectations. And after giving all they can give to the launch of their children, parents like the rocket boosters, should get out the way and watch their children change the world.
BACK IN THE DAY
My next statement may appear to be revisionist history but I believe it to be factual, parents of previous generations had a better understanding of their role as a rocket booster. Parents of previous generations believed it imperative that their children did better than them. Thus, parents poured everything – all their energy – into giving their children an opportunity to reach for the stars.
Regrettably, for the first time in history, children today are expected to do worse than their parents. Some parents blame technology and globalization. Other parents blame capitalistic greed and homogeneity. While blame can certainly be assigned to external factors, parents cannot escape the reality that they are with increasing regularity shirking their responsibility as a rocket booster.
So if you are a parent, I implore you to honor your role and responsibility as a rocket booster. Make sure you have within you the fuel to elevate not merely your own life but that more importantly you understand the ultimate mission – to help your children reach the highest and most extraordinary heights imaginable.
Are your children positioned to do better than you? Have you equipped your children to be able to reach for the stars? Children have two parents, do your children have two rocket boosters?
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