Good news for parents

Good news:  you cannot predict the future.  Parents can try,  but parents cannot predict, let alone  control  it. #parents

The future cannot be predicted or controlled.


Many try to predict how a child will fare in the future.  Most often such predictions are false. Proof, think about these big time childhood failures: Albert Einstein, Jim Carrey,  Benjamin Franklyn,  Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, Charlize Theron, and Steven Spielberg. Each one was an unlikely candidate  for success during their early years. .

Add to that the countless stories you hear about teachers and counselors predicting student failure that proved wrong.  Happened to me, happened to my kids.

Finally, think of the young addicts who get clean and sober and lead a good life.

The future cannot be predicted because the future is beyond our ability to control.

parenting advice

Not being able to predict or control the future does not mean giving up on doing the best you can to make sure  your children flourish.  It helps to understand more fully how complicated who we become is.

Jerome Kagan, Harvard  guru of human development, believes hundreds of factors shape who we are and who we become and how we change.  He lists these eight as high on his list and in the order each  appear in a child’s life:

  1. temperament and other inborn biological factors – for examples: a learning disability, your size, your brain power.
  2. Sibling position or lack of siblings.
  3. Identifications meaning who you think you are like, who you want to be like, as well as your heroes.
  4. What your parents do.  Kagan stresses the importance of  making the child feel valued, being consistently permissive or tough, teaching a set of  values.
  5. Social and school successes or failures.
  6. Community size: Kagan thinks small town life favors a child’s feeling competent in one field or another. Why? Less competition in general so even the less talented players get into the game and are value.
  7. The historical era you grew up between the ages of  twelve and twenty.
  8. Chance – and chance includes many things. I would have died early in my life, had I been born before the advent of penicillin. ;Oprah would not have achieved her success is born fifty years earlier. Illness and physical traumas change a person’s life course. The social class and families you are  born in are matters of chance. I am sure you can list many other chancy things.

The advice? Take positive predictions as hopes, negative ones as unproven. Teach your children to do the same.


Remember your job is to prepare your child for life in the real world not in the land of Happiness Now and Ever After. Encourage dreams, but also recognize the place chance plays in life.  Talk a bit about dreams you had to leave behind and how you coped.

Learning the 12 Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises and teaching  them to your children buffers the pain of failed dreams.  Go here to learn four of those exercises. 

Remember sharing is caring and share this post if you found it useful and think  another will also.


This post was inspired by this  Word Press Daily Post Prompt: There are 344 days remaining in the year. Describe what you’d like to be doing on day 211. (Hint: that’s July 30th.)

Links of interest




8 responses to “Good news for parents

  1. Nice reading about you

    Thanks for visiting my blog. Be in touch. Browse through the category sections, I feel you may find something of your interest.

    Happy New Year !!!!!!! and best wishes for you in 2014 🙂

  2. Pingback: I’m a little bit . . . something? [Sheri #1] | Rob's Surf Report

  3. Pingback: Daily Prompt: Predictions | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss

  4. Parents should not condemn themselves when child goes astray esp in this world of violence and drugs. It is heartbreaking. I lost a daughter to the wonderful world of crack when she was a teen for five years. At 30 today is is a hard working caring mother. So you never know. Our children don’t belong to us. They belong to themselves.

    • Yes, many of the kids I have loved were lured down that path by the media, friends, and even parent advisors who thought parents too restricting. Carl, would you like to do a guest blog on Emotional Fitness or here about what tactics you feel get your through that hard time? I would love that. The more we share the strong all become.

  5. Pingback: Predictions… | Life as a country bumpkin...not a city girl

  6. Pingback: BREATHLESS BALLET | hastywords

  7. Pingback: A Poetic Duet With Pouring My Art Out – “Future Dilemmas” | toofulltowrite (I've started so I'll finish)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.