Want to know the easiest way to get your kids to keep their word?

Would you love your kids to stop making excuses?

Your Word Has Value... If You Make It Valuable

Ever had someone promise you something then not follow through? It can be a little disappointing can’t it? It makes you distrustful of others. Just another one of those things that takes away a little of your faith in humanity. Mostly because, it makes you value their word less.

Now think back, can you think of times you have done the same? It’s an easy thing to accidentally do, especially when it comes to people you trust and love. You make a promise to your kids only to realize that following through was harder than you thought. Maybe something came up that made it impossible to keep your promise. It is easy to think that they will understand, and they likely will.

They will understand, but they will also remember…

They do understand, but that doesn’t stop them from feeling the same way you do if someone doesn’t keep their word to you. If you say you are going to do something, give it your all to do it. Otherwise, they will value your word less. 

Imagine what this can do to your relationships if it happens multiple times over many years to your kids? How about with your spouse? Your friends?

Your word can be one of the most valuable things you have. It is also something no one can take away from you.

It All Starts With You

Ever heard the term, ‘be the change you want to see in the world’? The thing is, how we act influences how those we spend time with act. 

Our kids, our relationships, families, and friends, we all adapt behaviors from each other the more time that we spend together.

If we go out of our way to keep our word, those around us are more likely to do the same. Making sure we don’t make excuses when we mess up helps to ensure that those around us will be less likely to make excuses either. 

Making sure that we apologize and make it up to our kids when we mess up makes it far more likely they will do the same.

If we go out of our way to make our word valuable, those around us that admire us like our kids will begin to copy that behavior.

If we don't keep our word and decide to make excuses instead, they are likely to copy that behavior as they grow...

How you act has an impact on how those around you act.

If you act uncaring towards others, those closest to you, like your kids, are likely to copy that behavior.

If you act rude around others, your kids are likely to copy that behavior.

It is easy as a human to be very self serving in how we look at things. The more you display that around others like your kids, the more they will display that behavior as well.

Thus, the ripples we put out into the world with each action and decision travel a long way, like the ripples from a rock thrown in a pond. Subtle, we can’t always see it, but they are there.

It's All About Integrity

Integrity is all about keeping your word and staying true to your VALUES.

The easiest way to start working on the concept of integrity is to be honest and true to yourself and to YOUR values. I emphasize YOUR in that sentence because so many of us choose our values based on the values of those we admire, rather than searching ourselves on how we really feel. 

We often figure that another, whether an expert or not, would know better than we do about what is best. The easy way out is to choose to let them tell us how to think and feel.

All this does is lock us into a box, It. makes us copies of other people rather than bringing our own unique experience to the table. The world is not black and white. There are more than two sides to every story. It’s all based in perception and how you see it. 

No one in history ever really sees themselves as the bad guy. People who did the worst things in history were often driven by what in their perception were good intentions. 

Integrity needs to grow with us. It means to build an admirable character. Integrity means to grow in our values and apply them to every person and situation. Not just applying them when it is convenient and easy, because it is not always easy…

You should always be open minded to knew ideas, and adjustments to your own, this is how we grow and learn from each other. This is where progress happens in the world.

Integrity Is All About The Follow Through

Talk is cheap, talk is easy. Action and adversity is where you find the real you, the best of you.

Integrity is about following through on our values and your word. 

If you believe the world needs more respect, then give respect, even to your kids. This is another thing that is easy to forget and let slide as parents, we want our kids to be respectful to us. Are we doing what we need to set that example? Are we treating our kids with that same level of respect in how we deal with them and their feelings?

Do you believe the world would be better if people were more honest? Then check yourself first! Are you always honest with yourself? Are you always honest with your kids? How can you expect them to be honest if your not willing to be truthful to them?

Believe the world would be a better place if everyone used more courtesy with each other? GREAT, but then do you make sure you are using the best examples of courtesy, even when things go wrong? 

In the face of someone who is being rude, can you disagree while still maintaining your courtesy? Or do you have a tendency to attack the character of the other?

It’s not easy, but to have integrity is to be strong in yourself. Strong in your ideas. Strong in who you are, not in who others tell you to be.

If You Absolutely Can't Follow Through...

Then be the example of the right thing to do…

Own up to it. Apologize and offer solutions to make it up to them. Show them that you do care about keeping your word. Act in the way you would hope that your kids would act if they were forced to not keep their word.

In other words, maintain the value of your word, and they will be more likely to care about the value of theirs.

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This #Teammate parent article was written by: Cory Rose